Posted on July 10, 2020 by smiweb - Alpine Rock Climbing, Mt. Conness - East Ridge Route Trailhead: Sawmill Campground - marked Distance: 9 miles – up and back Elevation gain: 2,900 feet Elevation peak: 12,590 feet Time: 6 to 8 hours Difficulty: 4 Danger level: 3 Class: 3 – a few spots How easy to follow: 3 Children: No Map: See Page 6 Fees/Permits: None Waypoints (WGS 84): See Page 5 More Articles About California Hiking ... totally wiped out and fell asleep in the cold wind. The lake sits beneath a rounded buttress that forms the ultimate termination of Mt Conness' eastern reach. had described this as a class 3 route, and remembering to be extra careful while being out here alone, I started my way along the crest of the ridge. I watched it rise and blow easterly with the winds as my eyes filled with tears. Mount Conness is located on the north east border of Yosemite National Park at an elevation of 12,590′. Note for future climbers: The parking at Sawmill is for campers and will probably be full; the road has copious pullouts. The traverse idea worked out fairly well - the terrain at the roughly 11,000 foot level on the southern slopes of the buttress was fairly good - compacted gravel, or nice little stretches of subalpine grass or low scrub. (. A five-minute drive brought me back up to Saddlebag Lake, where I stopped at the large trailhead parking area. There's one section of particularly significant exposure, however the rock and route quality remain consistently good. The summit block itself was very prominent, rising up another few hundred feet into the sky a short way to the west. Conness has been on tick list for a long time, but I was thwarted twice before, despite the route being very easy. Conness in particular has claimed a number of lives. Not knowing exactly what to expect, I was a little nervous as the mini-plateau narrowed and I approached the shattered bump of rock that marked the start of the knife-edged arete section. Since it was now fully dark, I decided to simply continue a little ways up and off into subalpine terrain until I found a flat bit of unvegetated ground. Is it very dangerous? Lastly, how scary is that summit block? Mt Conness - North Ridge North Ridge Route 5.6, Border of Yosemite National Park Lee Vining, California 1 day / Cost: $375.00 / per person with 1 Climber 1 day / Cost: $225.00 / per person with 2 Climbers The North Ridge of Mt. Later we would traverse the ridge from the summit to Virginia Peak, on the lower right of the photo (2020-10-18). There are at least two class 3 routes to the summit. The West Ridge of Mt. The first route from the west requires an overnight stay at Young Lakes or the closer Roosevelt Lake. The elevation here was now well over 12,000 feet - pretty high for someone who had come from sea level only 14 hours ago. The first bit was moderately steep, but wide and composed of solid, minimally-fractured granite. The rock began to transition to classic white Sierra Granite as I approached the saddle. The Conness Glacier was a fairly small sliver of its former self, hiding from the sun under the northeast-facing walls. Some people say they prefer the North Ridge of Conness, but I can't speak to that yet, since I haven't done it. The objective was not the top of the buttress, but rather the start of the east ridge beyond it. It's rated 5.6 which seems petty accurate. The climbing is enjoyable, clean and generally quite easy even for a 5.6. Fantastic views were now available both north and south off of the ridgecrest; to the north, the Conness Lakes Basin, and to the south, the basin of the Monroe Hall Research Natural Area, plus many craggy and high peaks of Yosemite National Park beyond. Next was the long descent down the east ridge back to Saddlebag Lake. Armed with a favorable snow report from the guys at telemarktips.com, I made plans to head back to the backcountry skiing mecca of Tioga Pass -- specifically, to climb Mount Conness and ski the chutes and bowls on its east ridge. In addition to offering relatively easy side-scrambling, this route also had the advantage of not having to deal with the clefts along the ridgeline, since it ran at roughly the level of the base of the clefts. Send feedback or leave comments (note: comments in message board below are separate from those in above message board), Web Page & Design Copyright 2001-2020 by Andrew Lavigne. 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