USA is blessed with mountains and mountaineers. It’s one of the favorite sports of US clad. You can see hoards of Americans mountaineering at any place around the world. The mountains here are diverse and accessible. So, go mountaineering in USA and dare yourself to something really adventurous. There are best rock-climbing spots in USA which you can climb with just hand gears and few protective gear. The seven tallest mountains in USA are in Alaska, which is higher than 14000 feet.
Best Time To Visit For Mountaineering
The best and most stable months to travel June, July, and August. The most stable month in June, at the end of August, there are more chances of weather going unstable.
6 Best Spots For Mountaineering In USA
Take a look at this list of all the best spots for mountaineering in USA that one should definitely add on their bucket list to embrace the thrill hidden there!
1. Mount Whitney
Mount Whitney stands at an altitude of 14505 feet and is a rock mountain. It is one of the highest peaks in Sierra. It is not anything peculiar and holds no glaciers. It’s just a piece of ranges on earth. Many people would just run or hike their way to the top of this exposed granite. What makes this mountain interesting is its history and its great east-facing mountain which has a good selection of routes. During winters people also come here to ski their way off this mountain.
Location: California Sierra Nevada
How to reach: One can reach Mount Whitney by taking US-395 to Lone Pine and then turn west to Whitney Portal Road. It’s around 13 miles from Whitney Portal.
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It is one of the highest peaks in the western hemisphere and is in the western part of Argentina, very near to the border of Chile. It sees a huge trail of climbers coming to this mountain every year. The reason is that there is a non-technical path that almost anyone capable of walking can pass. But the problematic part is its altitude. That’s why one should never attempt climbing this mountain alone.
How to reach: To reach here one should fly to Santiago and then to Mendoza. From Mendoza take a bus to Puente del Inca to enter the National Park.
3. Mount Rainier
The mountain was originally called Tahoma. It is one of the highest volcano and fifth highest mountain in the continental USA. It is huge and has multiple glaciers and various technical routes. It offers all the excitement a mountaineer is looking for in the climb. The most regular routes are Disappointment Cleaver and Emmons Glacier.
How to reach: To start your journey on Mount Rainier you need to enter Mount Rainier National Park. It has got access to all the directions. The best route is to reach Seattle and take a train and then a bus to reach here.
4. Mount Katahdin
This is one of the highest peaks in Baxter State Park and stands at an altitude of 5269 feet. This mountain provides a great view of Maine backcountry and stands almost a mile above sea level. The Appalachian trail is one of the famous trails and is also known as the “Knife Edge” which is only two feet wide and standing at thousand feet drop on either side of it. This blade like arch is what makes this mountain so attractive for the mountaineers. The best way to reach this summit is through the Chimney Pond.
Location: Northeast Piscataquis, Maine
How to reach: To reach there, take interstate 95 to the millinocket-mattawamkeag exit which is about 50 miles north of Bangor, ME. From Millinocket , take a right turn at the T point to take the road to Katahdin..
5. Mount Washington
This is one of the largest summit in northeastern US and is prominent part of east of Mississippi River. It is located on the Presidential Range of White Mountain and have a great view of the surroundings which makes this climb worth it. What makes this mountain an attraction for the adventure lovers is its unpredictable weather conditions. This mountain experiences some of the highest speed winds, with a record of 231 miles per hour during the month of April.
Location: Sargent’s Purchase, New Hampshire
How to reach: Pinkham Notch is one the most popular starting point for climbing the Mount Washington. It’s located halfway between Gorham and North Conway on route 16.
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6. Mount Hood
This mountain is located around 50 miles on the east of Portland in Oregon and is one of the most glaciated peaks in North America. It is a dormant volcano and provides an easy approach and low altitude for its climbers. Thus, making is popular amongst the less experienced climbers. The south side route along the Timberline Lodge parking area is the shortest and most popular route to the summit. You will require an ice ax and crampons to climb Mount Hood and a climbing helmet to keep you away from any hazards if you fall. On warm days it’s preferred to start your climb early, at least by 10 am.
Location: Portland, Oregon
How to reach: Take USA Highway 26 towards the government camp and turn to the north at Timberline Lodge, which is around half a mile east of Government Camp. Or else take OR SR-35 to Polallie Camp road and head west on the Forest Service Road 3512 to reach the Cooper Spur.
What To Pack For Mountaineering In USA
Climbing Pack, Rope, Helmet, Harness, Ice axe
Map, Compass, GPS, Cellphone, Battery Pack, Satellite messenger
Sleeping Bag, Water Bottles, Water filter, Meals, Energy Foods and drinks
Rainwear, Fleece Pants, Gloves, Long Sleeve shirt, Lightweight fleece
Boots, Socks, Insulated boots, Warm hat
First Aid Kit, Whistle, Signaling mirror, Lighter, Firestarter
Emergency shelter, Toiletries
Prescription medications, Hand sanitizer
Each expedition that you undertake in USA has its permits and permissions that are required. Most of these are available at the foothill of the mountain that you choose to climb. However, while planning your trek, you must check their official website and see if any kind of vaccination or anything is required to take up your expedition.
- One must prepare well before every climb. Start jogging long runs and build up your stamina to accommodate high altitude climbs. Your body must be accustomed to the strain that it will go through during your climb.
- Read about mountain climbing and known all kinds of challenges you might face and other notions that you may not be known otherwise.
- Do your packing in such a way that all your belongings are waterproofed. You can carry separate items in small poly bags before you place them into your backpack.
- You cannot afford to not have water during your climb. So, carry at least a two-liter bottle with you filled with fresh water which you can refill at any source of drinking water you find on your way.
- Carry snacks that are high in carbs to keep you fueled as you will be burning a lot of it during your hike.
- Carry a first aid kit with you with all kinds of necessary medication that might be required during your climb.
When you are willing to do something offbeat in life that also brings you a sense of achievement, then you turn towards activities like mountaineering. That sense when you reach the top of the hill and see everything lying small from there, the joy and excitement that brings, is something to try this activity for. Plus mountaineering also helps you achieve your physical goals, how much you can strain yourself in unfavorable conditions and weather and how much intellect you use to cope with them, brings into you the true joy of living the normal life that you live otherwise. So, plan a trip to USA and indulge in the fun.
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Frequently Asked Questions About Mountaineering In USA
A. You can use liners. It’s the best way to keep your bag clean for an extended period. Also, you can keep your belongings in different poly bags to keep them tidy and dry.
A. It depends on the trail you have chosen for your expedition. You must check with an expert whether you are fit enough to climb that trail.
A. Well not for all, but some you do require technical know-how of climbing. For some, you may even have to join the boot camp to get yourself ready for it before you are allowed to climb.
A. The best time is during June and July. After and before that you won’t find much stable weather to climb the mountains.
A. There are two safety instructions that you must never forget. One is to check the weather forecast before you climb and second is to never climb alone. You must have someone with you to keep a check on you during the climb. If you can’t bring anyone, opt for a group expedition.
A. It is only required for technical climbs. Depending on your climb you may require a range of equipment. Some of them are rope, harness, ice axe, etc.
A. Must carry a signaling device like a satellite phone or a signaling mirror to contact someone in case you are stuck in an unformidable situation. Also, you can have a cellphone and a battery pack with you.
A. You must carry degradable bags for removing human waste.
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