Pets allowed
Not Allowed
Elevation Gain
4,916.00 ft (1,498.40 m)
Trail type
10.00 mi (16.09 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

Candlelight Peak blends into and is and slightly hidden along Mount Irvine's east ridge, which is located in the Mount Whitney area above Whitney Portal. While the only landmark that marks its true summit is an old radio repeater, Candlelight Peak is a worthwhile climb that doesn't require a permit; a rarity in the Whitney zone!

Starting from Whitney Portal, follow the main Mount Whitney Trail toward Lone Pine Lake until you see the route up to the ridge. There are several crack and chute systems visible up the ridge but keep on the lookout for a ledge system next to a 'cave.' From there, just follow the chute all the way to the ridge. Once there, the climbing isn't over yet. The ridge is pretty much a slab system. It is not technically challanging but presents some exposure. The slabs gradually get less steep the closer you get to the false summit. There are a couple class 3 moves to get over the first false summit section, but then you  drop down bit, followed by another scramble to get over a second false summit. From there, it is only a short distance to get to the actual summit where you can find the summit register. 

The summit view is grand including views of Lone Pine Peak, Mount Irvine and Outpost Camp. Take some time to enjoy the scenary. Once you are ready to descend, the easiest way off the summit is to descend the sandy slope to the south toward toward Meysan Lake. Once off the slope, you will merge onto the Meysan Lake Trail to make a loop out of the climb. From the Meysan Lake it's about 5 miles back to the trailhead and Whitney Portal.




Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass


Open Year-round



Quiet for Whitney area. This Loop can be done in a day.


No trail for some of route.

Trailhead Elevation

8,374.00 ft (2,552.40 m)

Highest point

39,622.70 ft (12,077.00 m)


Backcountry camping
Big vistas
Old-growth forest

Typically multi-day


Permit required



Nearby Adventures

Eastern Sierra + White Mountains Area, California
Eastern Sierra + White Mountains Area, California

Nearby Lodging + Camping

Eastern Sierra + White Mountains Area, California
Eastern Sierra + White Mountains Area, California


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