Corteo Peak/Southwest Ridge

An easy Class 3 and 4 climb in the North Cascades near Rainy Pass.

getting there

Drive SR-20 (North Cascades Highway) to Rainy Pass (52 miles east of Marblemount). Park at the rest area on the south side (4,855 ft).


Hike the trail past Lake Ann. Stay on trail 2 miles to Heather Pass (6,080 ft). Continue west and across talus, passing to the south of Lewis Lake. Follow a trail or snow to the east moraine of the Lewis Glacier at ~6,400 ft. Camp at either Lewis Lake or on heather benches north of the moraine.


Follow the top of the moraine to the Lewis Glacier. Ascend southeast bearing left at top to a notch on ridge at 7,500 ft. Follow the ridge west to a notch and down climb 400 feet (on dirt or snow) to the cirque under Corteo Peak’s West Face. Reach Corteo Peak’s Southwest Ridge at a large notch (one-third up from the ridge col) via an easy gully. Follow the ridge to summit. Climbing is exposed Class 3 with a few Class 4 moves.


Descend the climbing route.


Trailhead to Camp 2-4 3,900
Camp to Summit 3-5 1,010
Summit to Camp 2-3
Camp to Trailhead 2


Standard alpine equipment.


  • This climb can be done in one day with a car camp at Rainy Pass. Plan on 10-12 hr.
  • Suitable Activities: Climbing
  • Climbing Category: Basic Alpine
  • Seasons: June, July, August, September, October
  • Weather: View weather forecast
  • Difficulty: Basic Alpine Climb, Strenuous 3, Technical 2
  • Elevation Gain: 4,910 ft
  • 8,080 ft
  • Land Manager: North Cascades National Park
    Stephen Mather Wilderness
  • Parking Permit Required: None
  • Recommended Party Size: 6
  • Maximum Party Size: 6
  • Maximum Route/Place Capacity: 6
  • USGS Mt Arriva
  • USGS Washington Pass
  • Green Trails Washington Pass No. 50
  • Green Trails Mt Logan No. 49
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