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Kearsarge Peak

Coordinates: 36°47′22″N 118°20′50″W / 36.7894738°N 118.3471996°W / 36.7894738; -118.3471996
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Kearsarge Peak
East aspect, from Owens Valley
Highest point
Elevation12,620 ft (3,850 m)[1]
Prominence535 ft (163 m)[1]
Parent peakPeak 12719[2]
Isolation0.80 mi (1.29 km)[2]
ListingSierra Peaks Section[3]
Coordinates36°47′22″N 118°20′50″W / 36.7894738°N 118.3471996°W / 36.7894738; -118.3471996[4]
Kearsarge Peak is located in California
Kearsarge Peak
Kearsarge Peak
Kearsarge Peak is located in the United States
Kearsarge Peak
Kearsarge Peak
LocationInyo County, California, U.S.
CountryUnited States of America
Parent rangeSierra Nevada
Topo mapUSGS Kearsarge Peak
First ascent1925 by Norman Clyde[5]
Easiest routeclass 2[6]

Kearsarge Peak is a 12,620-foot (3,847 m) mountain located less than two miles east of the crest of the Sierra Nevada mountain range, in Inyo County in northern California.[4] It is situated immediately northwest of Onion Valley in the John Muir Wilderness, on land managed by Inyo National Forest. It is also 8.5 miles (13.7 km) west of the community of Independence, and 2.1 miles (3.4 km) north-northwest of Independence Peak. Topographic relief is significant as the east aspect rises 5,250 feet (1,600 meters) above Onion Valley in two miles.



Kearsarge Peak, Kearsarge Pinnacles, Kearsarge Pass, and the Kearsarge Lakes were named after the Kearsarge mine on this peak's slope, which was named by its owners after the USS Kearsarge.[7] In turn, the ship was named after Mount Kearsarge in New Hampshire.

The first ascent of the summit was made in 1925 by Norman Clyde, who is credited with 130 first ascents, most of which were in the Sierra Nevada.[8][9] He was principal of the high school in Independence from 1924 to 1928, which provided him access to this peak near his home.



According to the Köppen climate classification system, Kearsarge Peak has an alpine climate.[10]> Most weather fronts originate in the Pacific Ocean, and travel east toward the Sierra Nevada mountains. As fronts approach, they are forced upward by the peaks, causing them to drop their moisture in the form of rain or snowfall onto the range (orographic lift). Precipitation runoff from this mountain drains into Independence Creek and South Fork Oak Creek, thence Owens Valley.

See also



  1. ^ a b "Kearsarge Peak, California". Peakbagger.com. Retrieved 2021-05-06.
  2. ^ a b "Kearsarge Peak CA". ListsOfJohn.com. Retrieved 2021-05-06.
  3. ^ "Sierra Peaks Section List" (PDF). Angeles Chapter, Sierra Club. Retrieved 2021-11-28.
  4. ^ a b "Kearsarge Peak". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey, United States Department of the Interior. Retrieved 2021-11-28.
  5. ^ Voge, Hervey H.; Smatko, Andrew J. (1972). Mountaineer's Guide to the High Sierra. San Francisco: Sierra Club Books. p. 266. ISBN 978-0871560643.
  6. ^ Secor, R.J. (1992). The High Sierra Peaks, Passes, and Trails (1st ed.). Seattle: The Mountaineers. p. 129. ISBN 978-0898863130.
  7. ^ Farquhar, Francis P. (1926). "Place Names of the High Sierra".
  8. ^ "Norman Clyde - Mountaineer". OwensValleyHistory.com. p. 57.
  9. ^ Jones, Fred L. (1954). "A Climber's Guide to the High Sierra".
  10. ^ Peel, M. C.; Finlaysonv, B. L.; McMahon, T. A. (2007). "Updated world map of the Köppen−Geiger climate classification". Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci. 11. ISSN 1027-5606.