Mount Sill – North Couloir


Last Wednesday I drove 6+ hours to the eastern Sierra with big mountains on my mind, specifically Mount Sill and the Palisades (full trip report here). At 14,153 ft, Mount Sill is the sixth highest summit in California and the second highest in the rugged Palisades group. The peak is known as the best viewpoint in the Sierra with spectacular views in every direction. The route I chose was the North Couloir via the North Fork of Big Pine Creek. The route is neither the shortest nor the easiest, but arguably the most scenic (and in fairness, all the routes are long). On the 10 mile approach I passed through a chain of lovely alpine lakes with Temple Crag towering in the background and was treated to sweeping views of the Palisade Glacier, the largest glacier in the Sierra Mountains.

Temple Crag from Second Lake

Temple Crag from Second Lake

The climb took 10:45 to complete (5:23 up, 27 minutes on top, and 4:55 down). There was a surprising amount of snow remaining, particularly an icy patch covering the exposed class 3/4 traverse section above the couloir which required attention. In addition, I didn’t get a chance to acclimate before the climb so I am sure the upper sections were more sluggish than they could have been. Check out the full trip report with many photos!

Palisade Glacier Panorama (Mount Sill on the left)

Palisade Glacier Panorama (Mount Sill on the left)

After the jump, view a couple videos, the first from the terminus of the Palisade Glacier and the second from the summit of Sill.


  • La Sportiva Fireblades
  • Kahtoola Aluminum Crampons
  • Petzl Snowracer Ice Axe
  • Petzl Meteor III Helmet

Be sure to check out the complete trip report with many more photos here.

One Response to “Mount Sill – North Couloir”

  1. Interval training Says:

    Great videos

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: