There are 9 summits in this massif that rises in the Cathedral Range of Yosemite National Park. It is popular among climbers, offering class 2-5 climbs on the various peaklets. The easiest summit takes two minutes of scrambling to climb, the most difficult is several pitches with a 5.7 crux. All of them are interesting problems with many possible variations. They are often climbed as a dayhike, requiring 3-5 hours on average to climb them all, as diesired, plus additional time for the hike in and out. There are excellent views of Yosemite from the various summits, particularly of nearby Cathedral Peak and Matthes Crest. We will meet at the Tuolumne Meadows Store and back track a few miles to the Cathedral Peak Trail head, once the group is assembled. Oh, and for those that just want to hike the easy routes see #0-#3, #5, #7 & #8..... my plan...
Here's an overview of each:
#0 - class 3. The north side is tricky but short, the south side is a bit easier.
#1 - easy class 3, approach from the east side between #1 and #2. Variation: climb the class 4 West Face.
#2 - class 3. Approach as above for #1, climb the north ridge to the summit. Variation: climb the class 3 West Face.
#2 1/2 - class 3. From the west, climb the short ridgecrest from the main ridge between #2 and #3.
#3 - class 3. Highest of the Echo Peaks. Register on summit. Traverse the fun, adjoining ridge from #2. Variation: climb the class 3 West Face. Variation: Climb the class 4 ridge from the saddle between #3 and #4.
#4 - class 4. This is the second hardest of the Echo Peaks and has a summit register placed by the Sierra Club. The steep gully between #3 and #4 on the east side can be most easily climbed to the left (south) of the central gully. From a point about 30 feet below the main #1-4 ridge on the east side, climb the NE side of #4 via ledges and flakes. Variation: climb the class 3 West Face to the notch between #3 and #4, then downclimb about 30 feet on the east side before following directions above.
#5 - class 3. The north and east sides are easy class 3.
#6 - class 4. This is the third hardest of the Echo Peaks. Secor rates it class 3, but it has some exposure with awkward moves. The easiest way up is from the north side, traversing from right to left at the base to get onto the vague north ridge. It can also be climbed at low class 5 on the West Face, traversing upwards left to right (low class 5).
#7 - class 3. Easy class 3 from the north. The northwest side has some steep, fun class 3+ flakes that can be climbed. The SE side also goes class 3 through some short chutes, approached from the base of #9.
#8 - class 3. The north side is easy class 3.
#9 - class 5.7. The hardest of the Echo Peaks has a summit register placed by the Sierra Club. The SW Face offers the easiest route to the summit. Beware - loose knobs. The NE Corner is 5.9.