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YDS
5.7

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Description

A 10,360ft summit that is easily seen from the Mammoth Lakes basin, it stands above Lake George.

There is some sport cragging along the left flank as the approach trail reaches the cliff, and some alpine/trad routes to the summit.

Approach

Park at the Lake George parking lot and start hiking along the Crystal Lake trail. At the first main branch (about 20 minutes) take the left branch, for Crystal Lake. Follow this to the lake, and then along the shore, about 100 yards after reaching the lake, take the obvious climbers' trail that heads off to the left up towards the peak.

Total approach: about 45-60 minutes.

Descent notes

From the summit, the descent is generally along the west face -- continue back along the peak ridge, and descend exposed easy 5th class (or rappel off horn) to talus, generally working south & west as the going is easiest (mixed 3rd, 4th class), until you can circle back around northwards (skiers right) to the base of the climbs.

Routes

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Grade Route

There are a number of routes and choices up the north face of Crystal Peak, all starting at the same chimney, and all having about the same difficulty level. Mostly easy 5th class, with 5.5-.5.6 sections, and the occasional 5.7 move.

Start up the chimney in the back of the corner where the approach trail reaches the cliff. At the end of the chimney, choose any of many choices towards the peak:

a. Stay left, following the arete.

b. Take the obvious ramp up rightwards, then up crack lines that rise up and rightwards, then straight up to the peak.

c. Up the ramp rightwards, then back left towards obvious chimneys.

All finish through the layer of gorgeous quartz crystal that gives the peak its name.

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Activity

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