REYNOLDS PEAK (9,679') CLASS 3
Location: 2.5 miles NE of Ebbetts Pass.
Drive: See Raymond Peak, Route A, Drive. Drive to the T-Junction signed "Sunset Lakes 1/4 Wet Meadows Trailhead 1" and park off the road. There is room for only a few small cars. High clearance and 4WD vehicles may try to proceed further.
Climb: Take the road going right (south) at the T-Junction marked "097." Pass through a USFS gate after several yards. Shortly pass the site of a shack on the right. In a few feet more, come to a junction and go right. A sign here reads, "Indian Valley Wet Meadows Reservoir 1/2 Mokelumne Wilderness Boundary 1 1/2". Take this road south through Indian Valley. Follow a track on the right (west) side of this valley and pass posted, "no vehicles" spur roads going to the right (west). With a good high clearance or 4WD vehicle, one can drive the 1.2 miles from the regular car parking near the T-junction to a turnaround in a lodgepole forest. Basically follow the main track to here. A slighter track continues south. Follow this on foot as it goes south, then head cross-country for a low saddle at the south end of this valley, navigating through or around to the right (west) of a brushy, boggy meadow, then through forests. From about this low saddle, climb to the left (east) up a juniper laden hillside, and then contour left (east) into the drainage leading up to the west side of Reynolds Peak. One will pass through a myriad of volcanic mud flow formations. Head up eventually for the distant, sharp mass that forms the highpoint. This is somewhat to the right of the perceived head of this drainage. The summit is the leftmost, high crag on the main ridge ahead. The least steep climbing can be made to this saddle between Reynolds Peak and the adjacent peak to the north. The ridge south from the saddle to Reynolds Peak summit is fairly easy walking. Climb up to the left (north) side of the summit mass and climb the class 3 rock up the last 100 feet on the less steep north side. This route narrows to a knife-edge, with considerable exposure. The moves are not bad, but a rope may assure the unsteady. There are good spots for anchoring.
Drive: Take Highway 4 to a large bend in the road called "the Elbow," which is 2.5 miles west from Ebbetts Pass or 8.7 miles east from Bear Valley. Park off the road where possible.
Climb: Head cross-country north up Elbow Creek at which Reynolds Peak is the head. Work around to the north side and join Route A.
Drive: See Raymond Peak, Route B, Drive. Take Highway 4 to the PCT South parking lot near Ebbetts Pass.
Climb: Take the PCT north, which starts 0.4 mile west along Highway 4 from the trailhead parking. One could take the PCT South, coming shortly to a junction where the right fork goes to the PCT North. Go past Upper Kinney Lake about 4 miles to the head of Eagle Creek just below and to the east of the peak. Climb directly up steep volcanic soils and gullies around to the north side, and join Route A and B to the top.
WINTER SKI ASCENT: See Raymond Peak, Winter Ski Ascent.
TRIP STATS: Route A, 1,700 feet gain, 4-5 miles one way; Route B, 1,700 feet gain, 2 miles one way; Route C, 1,500-1,600 feet gain with an additional 600-700 feet gain on the return, 5-6 miles one way; winter ski ascent, minimum of 4,000 feet gain, 11 miles one way.
Notes: See Raymond Peak,
Regarding Route B, one could, apparently, instead ascend cross-country to Sheep Meadow, go north across a ridge, and then contour northeast across three canyons. Continue east to join Route A. However, starting on Route A seems easier.