Taken from the northeast, Photo #1 and Photo #2 show Horn Peak’s northeast ridge. Your first goal is to hike up to the Rainbow trail and there are two ways to get there: 1) Next to the trailhead restrooms (Photo #3), hike southwest up an excellent trail to reach the Rainbow trail after 0.6 mile, or 2) From the trailhead, walk back down the road a short distance, turn left on a dirt trail used by 4-wheelers (Photo #4) and hike 0.3 mile to reach the Rainbow trail.
At the Rainbow trail (Photo #5), turn right and hike 0.7 or 0.2 mile (depending on which approach you used) to reach the junction for the Dry Lakes trail - Photo #6. Pass this junction and continue on the Rainbow trail another 0.7 mile to reach another trail junction - Photo #7. Turn left and start southwest up the rocky Horn Peak trail - Photo #8. After climbing for approx. 0.5 mile, crest a ridge at 10,000’. Enjoy an easy section before the trail climbs another 400’ to reach a small creek - Photo #9. Cross the creek, continue southwest along the creek for a short distance and make a sharp right before climbing 0.3 mile to reach the crest of Horn Peak’s northeast ridge, above 10,700’ - Photo #10.
Hike southwest along the ridge and you’ll soon get a view of the remaining route - Photo #11. After a long hike to tree line, exit the trees near 11,600’ and continue on or near the ridge crest (Photo #12 and Photo #13) to a 12,665-foot point, with a good view of the remaining route - Photo #14. You’re getting closer. Near 12,900’, you’ll reach the rocky, crux of the route - Photo #15 and Photo #16. Stay just left of the ridge crest and zigzag up through rock slabs to reach 13,000’. Ascend the remaining 450’ of steep, rocky terrain (Photo #17) to reach the summit - Photo #18 and Photo #19.