Brewer Pass

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Brewer Pass

Post by LMBSGV » Mon Dec 17, 2018 8:57 pm

GENERAL OVERVIEW: This pass leads between East Lake and Cinder Col


LOCATION: Kings Canyon National Park [ ... m=14&cat=2]


USGS TOPO MAP (7.5'): Mt. Brewer

Note: Since there is no description of this pass, here is a description based on my experience in August 2018. If one wants to get into Brewer Basin, both Longley Pass from the south/South Guard side and Sphinx Pass from the north/Sphinx Lakes side may offer better, safer alternatives.

Ascend from East Lake to the south ridge of Mount Brewer by following Ouzel Creek. It is best to not travel too close to the creek since that will result in unpleasant bushwhacking. Follow the ridges on the north side of Ouzel Creek to past timberline where a large talus slide (the moraine on the topo map) comes up from the south side. Cross a short talus field and then go over slabs with the origins of Ouzel Creek trickling underneath. This will put one directly below the final steep climb. Up to this point, it is class 1 or relatively easy class 2 travel.

The final climb to the notch at the top of the pass is extremely steep over loose rock and scree, reminiscent of Harrison Pass except the way to the top of Brewer Pass is much narrower and without the class 2 rocks on either side to avoid the scree. If the pass is covered in snow, the climb might be less treacherous, especially with micro-spikes, crampons, and/or an ice axe. Secor says “The east side of this pass may be impassable due to steep snow. If this is the case, it can be bypassed by climbing the south ridge of Mount Brewer . . .”

The west side is also steep, but without the scree and so easier and safer. Make your way down loose sand/rock past short cliffs and ledges to the small lakes by Cinder Col.

Approach to Brewer Pass

Nearer approach to Brewer Pass

Brewer Pass (red line indicates route I took)

View east from top of Brewer Pass

View west from top of Brewer Pass, Cinder Col below
View from Cinder Col of west side of Brewer Pass
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