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California Thirteeners

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What’s a Thirteener?

The California Thirteeners (aka 13’ers, 13ers, 13Kers, etc.) are the tallest mountains in the state, automatically incorporating the Fourteeners and Hundred Highest. Although most California Thirteeners present worthy alpine objectives for the mountaineer, I would be the first to admit that a complete list of a state’s Thirteeners is primarily of interest to the peakbagger.

Most of the peaks had as their first ascenders those who in a former day would have been called explorers but now could only be thought of as peakbaggers, interested primarily in trudging endlessly over heaps of stones, building cairns, and inserting their business cards into specifically designed cannisters especially carried for this purpose. But perhaps I am being too harsh. They’re having their fun.

Steve Roper, The Climber’s Guide to the High Sierra
Copyright ©1976 by Sierra Club Books

Compiling a list of the 13,000-foot peaks is a bit more complicated than simply including all summits rising above 13,000 feet, for not all of those peaks could seriously be considered separate mountains. To illustrate this point, suppose that you’re walking up a ridge toward the summit of some 14,000-foot peak. Once you pass the 13,000-foot level, every rock or boulder on the ridge crest rises above everything in its immediate vicinity, but would you call it a mountain? Climbers need additional, preferably objective criteria for deciding which are the mountains, and which are just bumps on the ridge, sub-summits, etc.

Some of the other list compilers have required that the summit have an official (or unofficial) name, but in my view this unduly favors the more well-known and easily accessible mountains over their distant, more exotic cousins. The convention used for the compilation of the Colorado Fourteeners, Hundred Highest, etc. is that the summit must stand 300 feet above all saddles connecting it to higher peaks. Like the summit height criterion, I admit that the 300-foot “prominence” (aka “saddle depth”) criterion is fairly arbitrary. However, I think it comes closest to representing what it means to be a mountain. I’ve therefore decided to adopt it for the Official VRMC California Thirteeners List.

to display the California Thirteeners on this page

or just download the list's KML file to load into the separate Google Earth application (also free).

Rank Help Icon Each passing peak is ranked among all other passing peaks, as determined using 'Best available data' (VRMC passing criteria). Peak Name Help Icon Peak names not yet recognized by the U.S. Geological Survey are surrounded by quotation marks.

Click a peak name to see detailed peak information including a (2-D) MyTopo Map of the summit area.
Elevation Help Icon The elevation is determined using 'Best available data' (VRMC passing criteria).

Click an elevation to focus on detailed peak information.
Prominence Help Icon The prominence is determined using 'Best available data' (VRMC passing criteria).
1Mt. Whitney 14,491' or 4417m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
2Mt. Williamson 14,375' or 4382m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
3White Mountain Peak 14,246' or 4342m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
4North Palisade 14,242' or 4341m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
5Mt. Shasta 14,162' or 4317m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
6Mt. Sill 14,153' or 4314m387'
7Mt. Russell 14,088' or 4294m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
8Split Mountain 14,058' or 4285m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
9Mt. Langley 14,026' or 4275m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
10Mt. Tyndall 14,018' or 4273m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
11Middle Palisade 14,012' or 4271m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
12Mt. Barnard 13,990' or 4264m968'
13Mt. Humphreys 13,986' or 4263m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
14Mt. Keith 13,975' or 4260m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
15Mt. Stanford (South) 13,973' or 4259m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
16“Barrett Peak” 1This peak appears to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it doesn't have sufficient prominence.13,962' or 4256m302'277' to 327' by altimeter error
17Trojan Peak 13,947' or 4251m738'
18Mt. LeConte 13,930' or 4246m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
19“Mt. Morgenson” 1This peak appears to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it doesn't have sufficient prominence.13,927' or 4245m302'279' to 344' by contours
20Mt. Agassiz 13,893' or 4235m853'
21Junction Peak 13,888' or 4233m774'
22Norman Clyde Peak 1This peak appears to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it doesn't have sufficient prominence.13,855' or 4223m344'272' to 338' by contours
23Mt. Mallory 13,845' or 4220m463'
24CalTech Peak 13,832' or 4216m551'
25Mt. Darwin 13,831' or 4216m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
26Mt. Kaweah 13,802' or 4207m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
27Mt. McAdie 13,799' or 4206m538'
28Mt. Winchell 13,775' or 4199m669'
29Mt. Morgan (South) 13,748' or 4190m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
30Mt. Gabb 13,741' or 4188m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
31Bear Creek Spire 13,740' or 4188m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
32Red Kaweah 13,737' or 4187m702'
33“East Barnard” 13,724' or 4183m486'
34Mt. Mendel 13,710' or 4179m554'
35Mt. Abbot 13,704' or 4177m896'
36Black Kaweah 13,680' or 4170m557'
37Midway Mountain 13,664' or 4165m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
38“Second Kaweah” 13,661' or 4164m545'
39Mt. Tom 13,652' or 4161m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
40Milestone Mountain 13,638' or 4157m758'
41Table Mountain 13,632' or 4155m541'
42Mt. Ericsson 13,615' or 4150m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
43UTM882683 13,615' or 4150m385'
44Birch Mountain 13,602' or 4146m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
45University Peak 13,589' or 4142m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
46“Ed Lane Peak” 13,576' or 4138m892'
47Mt. Brewer 13,570' or 4136m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
48Mt. Goddard 13,568' or 4136m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
49Tunnabora Peak 13,563' or 4134m610'
50Mt. Dubois 13,559' or 4133m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
51Palisade Crest 13,553' or 4131m620'
52“Milestone Mesa” 13,547' or 4129m581'
53UTM794568 13,540' or 4127m446'
54Thunder Mountain 13,533' or 4125m564'
55Cloudripper 13,525' or 4122m896'
56“Squaretop” 1This peak appears to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it doesn't have sufficient prominence.13,524' or 4122m302'262' to 394' by contours
57Mt. Gayley 13,510' or 4118m453'
58Mt. Fiske 13,503' or 4116m813'
59Mt. Hale 13,494' or 4113m659'
60Mt. Pinchot 13,494' or 4113m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
61Mt. Thompson 13,494' or 4113m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
62Mt. Bolton Brown 13,491' or 4112m574'
63Mt. Pickering 13,474' or 4107m883'
64Mt. Versteeg 1This peak appears to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it doesn't have sufficient prominence.13,470' or 4106m335'281' to 347' by contours
65“Twelve Flags Peak” 13,468' or 4105m340'
66“Northwest Lamarck” 13,464' or 4104m859'
67Mt. Mills 13,451' or 4100m509'
68Montgomery Peak 13,441' or 4097m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
69Mt. Newcomb 13,422' or 4091m604'
70Mt. Haeckel 13,418' or 4090m514'
71“Keyhole Plateau” 1This peak appears to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it doesn't have sufficient prominence.13,404' or 4086m328'284' to 324' by contours
72Cardinal Mountain 13,396' or 4083m600'
73Mt. Jepson 13,390' or 4081m390'
74“Mt. Steven Jay Gould” 13,385' or 4080m357'
75“The Cleaver” 13,383' or 4079m374'
76Kaweah Queen 13,382' or 4079m541'
77Mt. Wallace 13,377' or 4077m349'
78“Vagabond Peak” 13,374' or 4076m349'
79UTM809631 1This peak appears to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it doesn't have sufficient prominence.13,366' or 4074m358'262' to 394' by contours
80“Point Powell” 13,366' or 4074m358'
81Mt. Powell 13,364' or 4073m545'
82Mt. Hilgard 13,361' or 4072m886'
83The Thumb 13,356' or 4071m610'
84Mt. Jordan 13,344' or 4067m667'
85Black Giant 13,330' or 4063m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
86Joe Devel Peak 13,327' or 4062m449'
87North Guard 13,327' or 4062m568'
88Royce Peak 13,294' or 4052m909'
89Black Mountain (South) 13,291' or 4051m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
90Picture Puzzle 13,291' or 4051m640'
91UTM698439 13,284' or 4049m889'
92Mt. McDuffie 13,282' or 4048m719'
93Deerhorn Mountain 13,281' or 4048m666'
94Aperture Peak 13,265' or 4043m341'
95Mt. Bradley 13,264' or 4043m814'
96Mt. Goethe 13,264' or 4043m928'
97“Mt. Tom Ross” 13,253' or 4040m541'
98Gendarme Peak 1This peak appears to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it doesn't have sufficient prominence.13,252' or 4039m312'292' to 332' by contours
99Feather Peak 13,242' or 4036m755'
100“South Basin Peak” 13,240' or 4036m507'
101South Guard 13,232' or 4033m531'
102“Adamson Point” 1This peak appears to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it doesn't have sufficient prominence.13,232' or 4033m358'280' to 360' by contours
103UTM692591 13,228' or 4032m489'
104“Mt. Carl Heller” 13,225' or 4031m495'
105Mt. Julius Caesar 13,219' or 4029m479'
106Mt. Warlow 13,206' or 4025m561'
107Mt. Emerson 13,204' or 4025m791'
108“Ruby Peak” 13,188' or 4020m475'
109UTM690535 13,186' or 4019m607'
110Mt. Hitchcock 13,186' or 4019m463'
111Acrodectes Peak 13,182' or 4018m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
112Basin Mountain 13,181' or 4018m443'
113Mt. Wynne 13,179' or 4017m374'
114Striped Mountain 13,179' or 4017m541'
115Mt. Young 13,176' or 4016m387'
116UTM528173 1This peak appears to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it doesn't have sufficient prominence.13,172' or 4015m318'292' to 332' by contours
117Mt. Chamberlin 13,169' or 4014m413'
118Mt. Ritter 13,143' or 4006m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
119“Picture Peak” 1This peak appears to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it doesn't have sufficient prominence.13,140' or 4005m305'240' to 320' by contours
120Mt. Baxter 13,136' or 4004m614'
121Red Slate Mountain 13,136' or 4004m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
122Diamond Peak 13,127' or 4001m886'
123“Checkered Demon” 13,121' or 3999m523'
124Mt. Lyell 13,114' or 3997m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
125Mt. Gilbert 13,106' or 3995m452'
126UTM722049 13,104' or 3994m682'
127Merriam Peak 13,103' or 3994m882'
128Charybdis 13,096' or 3992m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
129Mt. Huxley 13,086' or 3989m394'
130Mt. Goode 13,085' or 3988m922'
131Seven Gables 13,080' or 3987m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
132UTM888455 13,074' or 3985m518'
133UTM762773 13,071' or 3984m518'
134“Twin Peaks” 13,061' or 3981m456'
135Mt. Dana 13,057' or 3980m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
136Mt. Genevra 13,054' or 3979m509'
137Mt. Mary Austin 13,051' or 3978m509'
138UTM542055 1This peak appears to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it doesn't have sufficient prominence.13,041' or 3975m322'281' to 321' by contours
139Mt. Barcroft 13,040' or 3975m463'
140Mt. Solomons 13,034' or 3973m591'
141“Polychrome Peak” 4This peak appears to be tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it's too short.13,018' or 3968m12,992' to 13,058' by contours509'
142UTM577135 4This peak appears to be tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it's too short.13,012' or 3966m13,000' to 13,040' by contours400'
143“Wheeler Peak” 4This peak appears to be tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it's too short.13,012' or 3966m13,000' to 13,040' by contours535'
144Mt. Gould 13,005' or 3964m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
145Kuna Peak 13,002' or 3963m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters
146Mt. Morgan (North) 13,002' or 3963m300m+Prominence is greater than 300 meters

Marginal Failing Peaks

Rank Help Icon Each passing peak is ranked among all other passing peaks, as determined using 'Best available data' (VRMC passing criteria). Peak Name Help Icon Peak names not yet recognized by the U.S. Geological Survey are surrounded by quotation marks.

Click a peak name to see detailed peak information including a (2-D) MyTopo Map of the summit area.
Elevation Help Icon The elevation is determined using 'Best available data' (VRMC passing criteria).

Click an elevation to focus on detailed peak information.
Prominence Help Icon The prominence is determined using 'Best available data' (VRMC passing criteria).
 Mt. Irvine 2This peak does not appear to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it does have sufficient prominence. 3This peak is tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data', so it will be included if it does end up having sufficient prominence.13,793' or 4204m226'197' to 328' by contours
 Mt. Corcoran 2This peak does not appear to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it does have sufficient prominence. 3This peak is tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data', so it will be included if it does end up having sufficient prominence.13,727' or 4184m223'197' to 328' by contours
 UTM769620 2This peak does not appear to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it does have sufficient prominence. 3This peak is tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data', so it will be included if it does end up having sufficient prominence.13,720' or 4182m295'269' to 335' by contours
 UTM883438 2This peak does not appear to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it does have sufficient prominence. 3This peak is tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data', so it will be included if it does end up having sufficient prominence.13,678' or 4169m279'197' to 328' by contours
 “Sharktooth” 2This peak does not appear to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it does have sufficient prominence. 3This peak is tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data', so it will be included if it does end up having sufficient prominence.13,665' or 4165m259'197' to 328' by contours
 “Mt. Williams” 2This peak does not appear to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it does have sufficient prominence. 3This peak is tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data', so it will be included if it does end up having sufficient prominence.13,622' or 4152m259'236' to 302' by contours
 UTM857461 2This peak does not appear to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it does have sufficient prominence. 3This peak is tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data', so it will be included if it does end up having sufficient prominence.13,530' or 4124m223'197' to 328' by contours
 UTM777615 2This peak does not appear to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it does have sufficient prominence. 3This peak is tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data', so it will be included if it does end up having sufficient prominence.13,409' or 4087m240'197' to 328' by contours
 UTM783617 2This peak does not appear to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it does have sufficient prominence. 3This peak is tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data', so it will be included if it does end up having sufficient prominence.13,343' or 4067m269'197' to 328' by contours
 UTM751908 2This peak does not appear to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it does have sufficient prominence. 3This peak is tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data', so it will be included if it does end up having sufficient prominence.13,264' or 4043m299'272' to 338' by contours
 Centennial Peak 2This peak does not appear to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it does have sufficient prominence. 3This peak is tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data', so it will be included if it does end up having sufficient prominence.13,228' or 4032m276'236' to 302' by contours
 UTM852432 2This peak does not appear to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it does have sufficient prominence. 3This peak is tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data', so it will be included if it does end up having sufficient prominence.13,219' or 4029m236'197' to 328' by contours
 Ericsson Crag 1 2This peak does not appear to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it does have sufficient prominence. 3This peak is tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data', so it will be included if it does end up having sufficient prominence.13,123' or 4000m279'262' to 328' by contours
 UTM692578 2This peak does not appear to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it does have sufficient prominence. 3This peak is tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data', so it will be included if it does end up having sufficient prominence.13,087' or 3989m236'197' to 328' by contours
 UTM678596 2This peak does not appear to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it does have sufficient prominence. 3This peak is tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data', so it will be included if it does end up having sufficient prominence.13,077' or 3986m226'197' to 328' by contours
 Ericsson Crag 2 2This peak does not appear to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it does have sufficient prominence. 3This peak is tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data', so it will be included if it does end up having sufficient prominence.13,068' or 3983m217'197' to 328' by contours
 UTM661642 2This peak does not appear to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it does have sufficient prominence. 3This peak is tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data', so it will be included if it does end up having sufficient prominence.13,022' or 3969m12,992' to 13,058' by contours236'197' to 328' by contours
 UTM758636 2This peak does not appear to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it does have sufficient prominence. 3This peak is tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data', so it will be included if it does end up having sufficient prominence.13,012' or 3966m12,992' to 13,058' by contours279'197' to 328' by contours
 “Sky Pilot Peak” 5This peak appears to be too short for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it is tall enough.12,999' or 3962m12,992' to 13,058' by contours482'
 “Matthes Peak” 5This peak appears to be too short for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it is tall enough.12,989' or 3959m12,960' to 13,000' by contours830'
1 This peak appears to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it doesn't have sufficient prominence.
2 This peak does not appear to have 300' of prominence based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it does have sufficient prominence.
3 This peak is tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data', so it will be included if it does end up having sufficient prominence.
4 This peak appears to be tall enough for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it's too short.
5 This peak appears to be too short for inclusion in the Thirteeners based on 'Best available data'. However, based on 'Spot or contours' there is a chance that it is tall enough.

What Happened to Mt. Muir?

Unfortunately, the saddle criterion eliminates four peaks appearing in Stephen F. Porcella and Cameron M. Burns’s Climbing California’s Fourteeners: The Route Guide to the Fifteen Highest Peaks (Mt. Muir, Thunderbolt, Starlight, and Polemonium Peaks). I certainly don’t limit my mountaineering to official Thirteeners; I’ve done Muir, Thunderbolt and Polemonium and highly recommend these climbs. Some day I plan to wrestle my way up the “milk bottle” atop Starlight as well (we turned back from the West Face route in 1993.) I also recommend Burns & Porcella’s guidebook, which includes excellent route descriptions. That said, what right does “Starlight Peak” (14,219' high with a 79' saddle) have to claim Fourteener status over Keeler Needle (14,288' with a 210' saddle)? Rather than make subjective decisions for the entire climbing community, I favor consistent, objective criteria, and the four peaks mentioned above from Porcella & Burns’ list simply don’t cut it.

The closest of the four is Mt. Muir. On 22 July 2000, over a very short period of time and in clear, stable weather, a VRMC climbing party measured its saddle depth with several altimeters, and it came in at 276(+/-20) feet. I hope this encourages somebody out there to lug a transit up the Mt. Whitney trail so we can answer this question once and for all. I really do wish it had 300 feet of saddle depth - I love climbing this mountain (four times and counting).

If you don’t see a peak in the list above, you’ll probably find it (along with Mt. Muir) on the Official VRMC non-Thirteeners list.


Are You a Peakbagger Too?

Here are the registered climbers closest to finishing the list:

Climber VRMC Thirteener Count
Burd141
Schmed97
BobSumner89
jmoffat79
Lugsole69
bromberg39
BrianKalet36
KKrugler23
fonzor12
dsweigert9
CMonsalve5
Al_Sandorff5
shariphillips4
RousZin13
crhumphries3
cave_dweller2
mkw_sierrasnow2
tlajones0
Davi0
Harden0
Tjholdrege0
Ubay0
Tholdrege0
earthwocha0

Keep track of your own climbs - become a registered climber!


Methodology and other Supplemental Pages

The following pages include various other peak lists, details on the VRMC methodology, etc:


Data Submissions Welcome

I welcome information about summit and/or saddle elevations, but please study the Methodology page first so you know where my data come from. If you notice a mistake I’ve made (such as an incorrectly listed map elevation) or have accurate survey data for a summit or saddle, please send an email to me at: schmed@transpac.com.