Highpointers, of course, strive to climb the highest peaks. However, sometimes doing only that misses some great mountains/areas.
What are some of the best non-highpoint hikes out there?
Here's five of the best I've done, mostly in Utah, but I'm sure other forum users can point out many more.
1. Navajo Mountain. Elevation, 10,388, S.E. Utah. You need a permit from the Navajo tribe and it's not much of a hike if you have a four-wheel drive vehicle and drive to the top, but the isolation and the views of Rainbow Bridge from above were great.
2. Notch Peak, Utah, southwest of Delta, 9,655 foot elevation. Has a spectacular, sheer cliff on its west side. Also has great centerpiece views of Utah's west desert area.
3. Frary Peak, Antelope Island, Utah, 6,596-foot elevation. With buffalo roaming the area, this peak gives a 360-degree aqua view of the Great Salt Lake and its west side seems more like a wilderness area than a state park.
4. Mount St. Helens, 8,365-foot elevation, Washington State. A fascinating look at the power of nature during about a 6-mile, one-way hike. Great views of Rainier. even Mount Shasta, on a clear day. Requires a special permit.
5. Columbia Gorge, Oregon, east of Portland. Contains dozens of short hiking possibilities to waterfalls, in the shadow of Mount Hood.
Ok, it's a county HP (Madeira county, CA) but I'll have to vote for my eponymous peak.
The hike from Agnew Meadows up past Shadow Lake and the campsites around Ediza Lake are gorgeous, and you have great views of Mt. Ritter, neighboring Banner Peak and the Minarets, all prime climbing destinations. Ritter and Banner are good 3rd-class scrambles, with quite a bit of snow climbing (ice axe and crampons required) for good measure. The Minarets are real 4th and 5th class rock climbing.
For the easy way up Mt. Ritter, check the route description in my 1999 trip report via the link, above.
Plus, if you drive over to Mammoth Lakes from the Bay Area, you necessarily pass through Yosemite, and there are lots of great hikes and non-technical climbs there...Half Dome, Lempert Dome up in Tuolomne Meadows, the Yosemite Falls trail, and many others. Obviously, if you're into big wall climbs, you have the face of Half Dome, and el Capitan to tempt you, as well.