Highpoints of the United States

A Guide to the Fifty State Summits

The highpoints of the fifty states range from Alaska’s 20,310-foot-high Mount McKinley to 345 feet at Lakewood Park in Florida. Some highpoints, such as Mount Mitchell in North Carolina and New Hampshire’s Mount Washington, can be reached by car on a sightseeing drive. Others, including Colorado’s Mount Elbert or Mount Marcy in New York, are accessible as wilderness day hikes. Still others, such as Mount Rainier in Washington or Gannett Peak in Wyoming, are strenuous and risky mountaineering challenges that should be attempted only by experienced climbers. Whatever your level of skill and interest, these varied highpoints offer a diverse range of experiences.

The third edition of this classic guide updates route descriptions and maps, changes to private property ownership and public lands requirements, lists of guides and outfitters, and essential online resources. As with the two popular previous editions, Highpoints of the United States is arranged alphabetically by state, each site description accompanied with a map, photographs, information on trailhead, main and alternative routes, elevation gain, conditions, historical and natural history notes, and lists of potential guides or outfitters. Appendices include a list of highpoints by region and by elevation, useful resources, and a personal log for the unashamed “peak-bagger.”

Whether you’re an armchair hiker or a seasoned climber, interested only in your state’s highest point or all fifty, this book will be an invaluable companion and reference.

Don W. Holmes is a California native now residing in Colorado. Don has been on numerous expeditions in the West, climbed sixty-five summits in the Sierra Nevada, taught basic mountaineering classes for the Sierra Club, reached the summits of 270 peaks over 5,000 feet in southern California, and assisted with the Wilderness Trekking School for the Colorado Mountain Club. He was formerly chair of the board of directors, president, and treasurer of the Highpointers Club. Don was awarded the prestigious Jack Longacre Award at the Highpointers Convention in 2005.

Praise and Reviews:

“An essential guidebook for climbing the U.S. highpoints.”
—Backpacker Magazine

"Holmes provides a simple yet comprehensive description of the nation’s 50 highpoints. I particularly like the addition of alternate routes, special conditions, historical notes and natural history which help enhance the peak-bagging experience. It shouldn’t be just about reaching the top. Hikers and climbers should learn and enjoy the beauty that nature provides around each of these spectacular sites—even if the highpoint is in the middle of a highway. Holmes makes that possible with his Guide to the Fifty State Summits."
—Mike Weibel, coauthor of High in Utah: A Hiking Guide to the Tallest Summits in the State’s 29 Counties