Route: South Sister (OR)

Oregon, US
11.5 mi

South Sister (10358 ft) is the third highest peak in Oregon. It is the highest of the Three Sisters, near Bend, Oregon. The route to the summit is mildly technical (class 3) and ascends 5600 feet in about 6.25 miles.

There is a Strava segment for this route, but we consider Strava times approximate & runners should report their precise times.  Runners should note whether they start/finish where the Climber's Trail crosses Hwy 372, or at the TH, which adds about 200m in each direction. King's RT FKT was from the TH. McKay's ascent was from the highway, but Mendoza does not indicate his starting point.  See David Mitchell's South Sister FKT page for a summary of fast men's and women's times from Strava.

The Five Peaks Traverse summits the Three Sisters plus Mt. Bachelor and Broken Top.


The Bulletin of Bend (published in Jan. 2013) credited Max King and Ryan Bak with the ascent (1h26m18s) and round trip (2h41m) FKT, set in October 2011. Bak is quoted as saying "That was the first time I ever tried to ascend something as fast as I could. It was fun and new to me. There's definitely a whole crew of people who are very into that. It's very different than just going out for a run in the mountains. The way it fatigues your muscle groups is different when you're using the same muscle groups for two to three hours during an ascent.” Some faster ascent and round trip times are reported here.


GPS Track


New female times for South Sister climb are:

the Purple Ninja 1:47:30  July 27, 2018

Stephanie Howe Violett ~1:57:00 July 24th, 2018

Amy Sproston ~ 1:58 August 5th, 2017

It’s worth noting that there are a number of faster female times for S Sister climb and round trip. In 2021 I set a time of 2:53:42 for the RT time from the hwy crossing, and my time is the third fastest on Strava, behind Alexis Crellin and the Purple Ninja. I hope Purple Ninja claims her spot on the podium!

User Picture
Profile picture for user emilyrosekeddie

Bri.g.runs absolutely! I hope so too. There are a lot of fast females times that exist. Part of the fkt/Strava issue with crossover is Strava segments not being complete routes. Max’s route starts at the parking lot and goes to the true summit, not just the rim. I think for these popular routes it’s fairly obvious when faster times exist- but also if they aren’t acknowledged, the women won’t be represented! I know I’m far from fastest and was hoping by posting a more recent time it might get the route more traction and we’d see more names added. Strange there hasn’t been yet!

Also, 2:54 is smokin!