Many people who want to climb mountains instantly dream about hiking all 29,029 feet of Mount Everest. Before you can make it up there, you must first get your feet wet with some smaller mountains.
If you are a beginner mountain climber, you want to start small before tackling the more significant peaks. A gradual increase in the challenge will help you learn the skills needed for more intense treks.
If you are getting started mountaineering but don’t know where to start, we’ve got you covered. Our guide covers the best mountains to climb all beginner mountaineers will love.
1. Mt. Rainier
A perfect mountain to start your climbing career with is Mt. Rainier. Located in Washington state, this mountain is excellent for mastering basic mountaineering skills.
Its 14,411-foot elevation is tall and requires a bit of technical skill to reach the top. You’ll learn how to clip ropes, use the lines, and traverse ice and snow.
Hiking to the top is a three-day round trip. You can find many guides and instructors to help teach you the literal and figurative ropes.
2. Mt. Baker
Another Washington state beginner mountain is the icy Mt. Baker. This mountain isn’t very technical but helps newbies gain altitude and glacier climbing skills.
You can reach the summit in by hiking one very long day. The many hours of hiking will help on future pushes to the summit.
You can find many guided Mt. Baker climbs that will get you to the summit. Consider taking part in one to help hone your alpine skills.
Are you looking to try to gain some experience hiking in higher elevations? If so, check out Cotopaxi in Ecuador. This mountain raises 19,347 feet tall and is a volcano!
Head to this mountain if you want to teach your body how to acclimate to higher elevations. As a bonus, the snow and ice-covered summit will help you practice more technical skills.
Most climbs up this mountain last three or four days. You’ll cross crevasses and climb up glaciers. Make sure you have a solid endurance base before attempting this climb.
4. Mount Kilimanjaro
A famous beginner mountain to trek is Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania. This mountain rises 19,341 feet into the sky, making it the tallest mountain in Africa.
The long five to seven-day trek will help you get used to an extended trekking adventure. You’ll have to live in a tent, pace yourself, and acclimate your lungs.
You can choose from several different Kilimanjaro routes. The Marangu route lasts six days and is the easiest way to reach the summit.
The most beautiful route to take is the Lemosho route. Although stunning, it is much more challenging than the Marangu route.
For the most ambitious way up the mountain, choose the Umbwe route. You’ll need to be in great shape to get to the top using the path. Although the most challenging, you won’t see many people on these trails.
Most people who hike Kilimanjaro join an experienced guide. Your trek will cost you a pretty penny, but the money goes to the guides and the Kilimanjaro National Park.
5. Island Peak
The Himalayan mountains are a mountaineering paradise. If you aren’t ready to climb Mount Everest, give Island Peak a try.
Located in Nepal, this mountain soars 20,305 feet tall. If you are already acclimatized, you’ll need two to three days to reach the summit.
You’ll practice using crampons and learn how to use an ice ax. If you make it to the summit with no issue, you’ll be ready for more challenging Himalayan peaks.
6. Mount Whitney
You can find the highest mountain in the lower 48 in sunny California. Mount Whitney is the tallest of the 14,000-foot Sierra Nevada mountains.
Although the bare granite walls make for a dramatic sight, anyone in good shape can make it up to the summit. If this mountain is on your bucket list, you’ll need to enter a lottery for a permit to hike. The lottery helps keep the number of climbers on the mountain at a reasonable level.
More than 30,000 people try to reach the top of this mountain each year, but only 10,000 make it to the summit. Even though this hike isn’t too hard, it still requires some training.
7. Mount Fiji
One of the most picturesque mountains you can climb is the tallest mountain in Japan. Mount Fiji is not an overly tough climb, but at 12,389 feet tall still takes some preparation.
If you are new to mountaineering, consider starting at the Fuji-Subaru Line. You’ll begin 7,874 feet up and knock five hours off your hike.
Mount Fuji is snow-covered most of the year. Although this snow and ice make the mountain beautiful, the hike is still dangerous. The climbing season for the general population lasts from July to September.
If you want to hike in other months, you need special permission. The mountain is also closed during rainstorms as bad weather can loosen the gravel on the trails.
Mount Fuji is a sacred mountain in Japan. If you make it to the top, you’ll find a shrine dedicated to the spirit of the mountain.
There is also a post office at the summit! You can buy postcards here and get a special stamp showing you made it to the top.
You Can Find the Best Mountains to Climb as a Beginner All Over the World
If you’re just starting as a climber, you’ll want to head to an easier mountain to get a feel for the sport. The best mountains to climb for beginners will help you learn more about yourself while honing your skills.
You can find great beginner mountains in every continent on the globe! If you’re ready to plan your trip, check out our articles on Asia, South America, and Africa for inspiration.