The most beautiful mountains in the US are a contentious subject, for this is a land that brims with beauty. We scoured the states and whittled them down to a list of 21
Legendary climber Reinhold Messner said that there are three rules of mountaineering: “It’s always further than it looks. It’s always taller than it looks. And it’s always harder than it looks.”
Messner was the first person to climb all 14 eight-thousander mountains and has undoubtedly seen the ugly side of the world’s most beautiful mountains. Thankfully, those of us less alpine-inclined can observe these peaks from afar. Most of us might content ourselves with the most beautiful mountains in the US instead. To help get you started, we’ve whittled our favourites to a list of 20.
Most beautiful mountains in the US
Our list of the most beautiful mountains in the US is unashamedly subjective. We haven’t used a matrix of metrics, scoring each on height, dominance, elegance or difficulty. Instead, we’ve chosen peaks that are striking in a particular way. It could be the extraordinary symmetry of Mount Shishaldin or the jagged spine of Dragontail Peak.
These mountains are all remarkable in a specific way and, we believe, deserve a place on this list. So, without further ado, and in no particular order, here is our list of the most beautiful mountains in the US.
1. Baring Mountain
Height: 1,868m (6,127ft)
Location: Cascade Range, Washington
Baring Mountain is the third steepest peak in Washington, which is more impressive than it sounds given that the state is notorious for difficult climbs.
Baring’s double summit lends it a dramatic aspect and its sheer north face rivals some of the big walls in Yosemite. Efforts to scale the face spanned 10 years until climbers Don Gordon and Ed Cooper completed a successful ascent in July 1961. Today, it goes years without ascents because of poor rock quality and unpredictable weather.
2. Mount Shishaldin
Height: 2,857m (9,373 ft)
Location: Aleutian Islands, Alaska
Mount Shishaldin is a moderately active volcano on Unimak Island in the Aleutian Islands of Alaska. Its contour lines form near-perfect circles above 1,980m (6,500ft), making it one of the most symmetrical mountains on Earth.
Shishaldin has long served as a landmark to…