Highpoints by Steepness (Tim Worth)

Quoting from Tim Worth’s “Summit Steepness” website: “In contrast to plugging geographical information into a complex formula to get a numerical rating, angle-based calculation reports steepness of the terrain surrounding a summit in terms of easy to understand figures: angle and vertical drop. […] The calculations above are related of the concept of Spire Measure, with the main difference here being that fixed distances from the summit are analyzed.”

Three key metrics are calculated:

  • Max Drop/Angle – Steepest single line in any direction outward from summit at a given distance (100m, 800m)
  • Min Drop/Angle [*] – Least steepest single line in any direction outward from summit at a given distance (100m, 800m)
  • Avg Drop/Angle – Average steepness over all directions outward from a summit at a given distance (100m, 800m). Quoting “At 100m, sharp spires are identified, 800m/1600m favor large mountains with great vertical drop“.

* Note that the Min Drop/Angle can be negative. For example, the 3DEP spot elevations can be inaccurate. This is especially bad if the central summit elevation is wrong, or taking measurements on a flat plateau (Oklahoma). Another example is with Boundary Peak, NV, where the 800m lines extend across the NV/CA state border (towards Wheeler Peak, CA).

Tables with gory details are below, but first, let’s look at some summary graphics. The first one shows the Max/Avg/Min drops at 100m and 800m.

We can also compare the Max drop (left) and Avg drop (right) at 100m versus 800m in scatter plots.

These scatter plots allow us to see which peaks are “flatter” near the summit (100m) versus near the shoulder (800m). These are the peaks to the left of the ratio line. Peaks to the right of the ratio line will be “steeper” near the summit (100m) versus near the shoulder (800m).

Looking at Massachusetts we see its a fairly flat top near the summit (100m)

as compared to Montana which has a fairly steep summit area.

This map tries to present the data in a visual manner. The pins are color coded to the average drop at 100m from the summit. There are four arms extending which represent the minimum (purple lines) and maximum (orange lines) drops on a logarithmic scale on their respective bearings.

Three tables are presented below. The first is a summary table showing the Max/Min/Avg drops at 100m/800m. The next table provides detailed information at 100m while the final table provides detailed information at 800m.


This table presents summary steepness information:
Max 100 – maximum drop in feet at 100m
Min 100 – highest minimal drop in feet at 100m
Avg 100 – average drop in feet at 100m
Max 800 – maximum drop in feet at 800m
Min 800 – highest minimal drop in feet at 800m
Avg 800 – average drop in feet at 800m

State Max 100 Min 100 Avg 100 Max 800 Min 800 Avg 800
Alabama72ft15ft43ft760ft71ft410ft
Alaska288ft52ft137ft2,324ft693ft1,336ft
Arizona162ft31ft120ft1,732ft368ft1,195ft
Arkansas36ft13ft20ft659ft75ft361ft
California707ft10ft301ft2,214ft540ft1,400ft
Colorado215ft11ft115ft1,821ft347ft1,108ft
Connecticut*89ft25ft44ft550ft149ft412ft
Delaware11ft2ft5ft72ft11ft43ft
Florida15ft-0ft6ft82ft2ft44ft
Georgia197ft45ft98ft1,391ft385ft824ft
Hawaii164ft6ft99ft1,019ft165ft625ft
Idaho305ft92ft224ft2,400ft452ft1,553ft
Illinois57ft3ft40ft243ft44ft155ft
Indiana10ft2ft5ft39ft9ft24ft
Iowa15ft3ft9ft53ft13ft31ft
Kansas9ft1ft5ft86ft2ft44ft
Kentucky64ft3ft32ft794ft73ft378ft
Louisiana73ft6ft39ft272ft111ft204ft
Maine331ft21ft140ft2,192ft427ft1,055ft
Maryland100ft18ft61ft630ft65ft429ft
Massachusetts78ft21ft43ft1,509ft362ft799ft
Michigan65ft6ft31ft400ft42ft222ft
Minnesota58ft21ft32ft465ft131ft332ft
Mississippi113ft37ft70ft314ft125ft227ft
Missouri10ft3ft6ft320ft24ft150ft
Montana798ft79ft359ft2,339ft235ft1,451ft
Nebraska27ft3ft15ft75ft13ft48ft
Nevada265ft75ft173ft2,053ft-11ft1,331ft
New Hampshire103ft18ft60ft1,131ft362ft845ft
New Jersey128ft13ft72ft673ft69ft372ft
New Mexico246ft34ft137ft1,705ft192ft979ft
New York193ft40ft112ft1,428ft554ft998ft
North Carolina152ft30ft102ft1,229ft262ft754ft
North Dakota157ft17ft80ft348ft115ft281ft
Ohio39ft4ft24ft115ft20ft69ft
Oklahoma8ft0ft2ft569ft0ft257ft
Oregon510ft21ft231ft2,440ft970ft1,777ft
Pennsylvania12ft0ft5ft325ft19ft149ft
Rhode Island24ft4ft10ft118ft21ft70ft
South Carolina172ft26ft89ft800ft196ft529ft
South Dakota300ft39ft176ft1,262ft474ft842ft
Tennessee69ft27ft44ft1,378ft141ft760ft
Texas310ft75ft208ft2,668ft594ft1,390ft
Utah354ft73ft189ft1,884ft296ft1,219ft
Vermont300ft5ft146ft1,518ft406ft1,067ft
Virginia98ft15ft44ft1,011ft276ft568ft
Washington125ft16ft74ft1,424ft303ft911ft
West Virginia91ft2ft32ft1,298ft79ft572ft
Wisconsin96ft41ft60ft162ft23ft120ft
Wyoming433ft51ft203ft2,094ft857ft1,492ft
District of Columbia37ft0ft17ft164ft20ft101ft
American Samoa553ft9ft209ft1,630ft91ft775ft
Guam124ft13ft77ft947ft88ft494ft
Northern Marianas Is0ft0ft0ft0ft0ft0ft
Puerto Rico282ft43ft135ft1,296ft427ft937ft
US Virgin Is127ft17ft67ft963ft206ft637ft

* – Note that Connecticut is measured from Mount Frissell, MA (the summit) versus the contour line on the CT/MA border.
* – Note that Northern Marianas Islands has no spot elevations


In this section we present detailed steepness information at 100m. The following graphic shows the maximum, average and minimum drops for the 50+6 summits.

This table presents detailed steepness information at 100m:
Max Drop – maximum drop in feet
Max Angle – maximum angle [atan(max drop/100m)] in degrees
Max Brng – the true compass bearing of the max drop line
Min Drop – highest minimal drop in feet
Min Angle – highest minimal angle [atan(min drop/100m)] in degrees
Min Brng – the true compass bearing of the min drop line
Avg Drop – average drop in fee
Avg Angle – average angle [atan(avg drop/100m)] in degrees

State Max Drop Max Angle Max Brng Min Drop Min Angle Min Brng Avg Drop Avg Angle
Alabama72.3ft12.4°301°15.3ft2.7°190°43.4ft7.5°
Alaska287.9ft41.3°202°51.5ft8.9°120°137.4ft22.7°
Arizona162.5ft26.3°293°30.6ft5.3°179°119.7ft20.1°
Arkansas35.9ft6.3°319°12.9ft2.3°141°20.3ft3.5°
California707.3ft65.1°25°9.6ft1.7°221°300.6ft42.5°
Colorado215.2ft33.3°10.8ft1.9°206°115.3ft19.4°
Connecticut*88.6ft15.1°106°25.1ft4.4°219°44.2ft7.7°
Delaware10.5ft1.8°169°1.6ft0.3°295°5.0ft0.9°
Florida15.2ft2.6°136°-0.0ft-0.0°14°5.5ft1.0°
Georgia197.0ft31.0°43°45.3ft7.9°113°98.0ft16.6°
Hawaii163.6ft26.5°94°5.9ft1.0°168°98.8ft16.8°
Idaho305.1ft42.9°355°92.0ft15.7°169°224.4ft34.4°
Illinois56.6ft9.8°194°2.9ft0.5°280°40.2ft7.0°
Indiana9.8ft1.7°68°2.1ft0.4°123°5.4ft0.9°
Iowa15.1ft2.6°101°3.1ft0.5°193°9.0ft1.6°
Kansas9.3ft1.6°284°1.2ft0.2°5.2ft0.9°
Kentucky63.6ft11.0°87°3.5ft0.6°15°32.4ft5.6°
Louisiana73.2ft12.6°49°5.9ft1.0°321°39.5ft6.9°
Maine330.8ft45.2°60°20.8ft3.6°315°140.2ft23.1°
Maryland99.6ft16.9°126°18.4ft3.2°218°60.9ft10.5°
Massachusetts78.3ft13.4°72°20.9ft3.6°261°42.6ft7.4°
Michigan65.0ft11.2°239°6.1ft1.1°130°31.5ft5.5°
Minnesota58.4ft10.1°317°20.7ft3.6°59°32.3ft5.6°
Mississippi112.8ft19.0°200°37.2ft6.5°10°70.5ft12.1°
Missouri9.7ft1.7°197°3.2ft0.6°290°5.7ft1.0°
Montana798.2ft67.7°25°79.1ft13.6°305°359.3ft47.6°
Nebraska27.4ft4.8°319°2.5ft0.4°158°15.0ft2.6°
Nevada264.9ft38.9°339°74.6ft12.8°203°173.1ft27.8°
New Hampshire103.4ft17.5°21°18.5ft3.2°215°59.8ft10.3°
New Jersey127.9ft21.3°300°12.6ft2.2°18°72.2ft12.4°
New Mexico245.5ft36.8°310°34.4ft6.0°33°137.2ft22.7°
New York193.5ft30.5°162°39.8ft6.9°61°111.6ft18.8°
North Carolina152.5ft24.9°221°29.8ft5.2°130°101.7ft17.2°
North Dakota157.3ft25.6°130°16.7ft2.9°54°79.5ft13.6°
Ohio39.4ft6.8°273°4.2ft0.7°171°23.9ft4.2°
Oklahoma7.7ft1.4°158°0.0ft0.0°203°1.8ft0.3°
Oregon509.7ft57.2°355°21.3ft3.7°269°231.5ft35.2°
Pennsylvania11.6ft2.0°109°0.2ft0.0°20°5.5ft1.0°
Rhode Island24.0ft4.2°263°3.9ft0.7°352°10.3ft1.8°
South Carolina172.2ft27.7°20°26.4ft4.6°113°89.5ft15.3°
South Dakota299.8ft42.4°39.0ft6.8°262°175.8ft28.2°
Tennessee68.5ft11.8°199°27.0ft4.7°130°43.7ft7.6°
Texas309.8ft43.4°74.8ft12.8°258°208.4ft32.4°
Utah354.3ft47.2°274°72.6ft12.5°177°189.1ft30.0°
Vermont300.0ft42.4°99°4.8ft0.8°220°145.7ft23.9°
Virginia97.8ft16.6°318°15.1ft2.6°205°44.0ft7.6°
Washington124.7ft20.8°78°15.7ft2.7°173°74.4ft12.8°
West Virginia90.6ft15.4°139°2.3ft0.4°212°32.3ft5.6°
Wisconsin96.1ft16.3°220°40.6ft7.1°321°60.1ft10.4°
Wyoming433.3ft52.9°264°51.4ft8.9°215°202.8ft31.7°
District of Columbia37.3ft6.5°297°0.1ft0.0°341°17.1ft3.0°
American Samoa552.6ft59.3°214°9.4ft1.6°295°208.6ft32.4°
Guam124.1ft20.7°32°12.8ft2.2°162°77.4ft13.3°
Northern Marianas Is0.0ft0.0°0.0ft0.0°0.0ft0.0°
Puerto Rico282.4ft40.7°157°42.8ft7.4°235°135.4ft22.4°
US Virgin Is127.4ft21.2°17.1ft3.0°99°67.0ft11.5°

* – Note that Connecticut is measured from Mount Frissell, MA (the summit) versus the contour line on the CT/MA border.
* – Note that Northern Marianas Islands has no spot elevations


In this section we present detailed steepness information at 800m. The following graphic shows the maximum, average and minimum drops for the 50+6 summits.

This table presents detailed steepness information at 800m:
Max Drop – maximum drop in feet
Max Angle – maximum angle [atan(max drop/800m)] in degrees
Max Brng – the true compass bearing of the max drop line
Min Drop – highest minimal drop in feet
Min Angle – highest minimal angle [atan(min drop/800m)] in degrees
Min Brng – the true compass bearing of the min drop line
Avg Drop – average drop in fee
Avg Angle – average angle [atan(avg drop/800m)] in degrees

State Max Drop Max Angle Max Brng Min Drop Min Angle Min Brng Avg Drop Avg Angle
Alabama760.2ft16.2°119°70.6ft1.5°352°409.6ft8.9°
Alaska2,323.8ft41.5°186°692.7ft14.8°303°1,336.3ft27.0°
Arizona1,732.3ft33.4°128°368.1ft8.0°217°1,194.5ft24.5°
Arkansas658.9ft14.1°177°75.2ft1.6°107°361.3ft7.8°
California2,213.5ft40.1°96°539.9ft11.6°169°1,399.8ft28.1°
Colorado1,820.5ft34.7°316°347.3ft7.5°205°1,108.3ft22.9°
Connecticut*549.6ft11.8°70°148.9ft3.2°411.8ft8.9°
Delaware71.8ft1.6°76°11.1ft0.2°195°42.7ft0.9°
Florida81.7ft1.8°177°2.0ft0.0°220°43.5ft1.0°
Georgia1,390.6ft27.9°317°385.5ft8.4°173°824.0ft17.4°
Hawaii1,018.7ft21.2°106°164.9ft3.6°322°625.0ft13.4°
Idaho2,400.0ft42.4°108°452.4ft9.8°42°1,552.9ft30.6°
Illinois242.8ft5.3°300°43.8ft1.0°125°154.8ft3.4°
Indiana38.8ft0.8°235°8.8ft0.2°143°24.2ft0.5°
Iowa52.6ft1.1°220°13.5ft0.3°165°31.3ft0.7°
Kansas85.9ft1.9°317°2.2ft0.0°229°44.3ft1.0°
Kentucky794.4ft16.8°169°73.3ft1.6°294°377.8ft8.2°
Louisiana271.6ft5.9°284°111.0ft2.4°174°203.9ft4.4°
Maine2,191.9ft39.9°39°426.6ft9.2°271°1,054.9ft21.9°
Maryland630.0ft13.5°341°64.6ft1.4°217°428.5ft9.3°
Massachusetts1,508.7ft29.9°114°361.5ft7.8°233°798.6ft16.9°
Michigan400.2ft8.7°42.1ft0.9°167°221.6ft4.8°
Minnesota465.4ft10.1°212°131.2ft2.9°336°332.3ft7.2°
Mississippi314.0ft6.8°339°125.1ft2.7°162°226.8ft4.9°
Missouri320.3ft7.0°62°23.5ft0.5°110°150.0ft3.3°
Montana2,338.7ft41.7°16°235.0ft5.1°317°1,451.2ft28.9°
Nebraska75.0ft1.6°308°12.8ft0.3°117°47.6ft1.0°
Nevada2,052.9ft38.0°332°-11.3ft-0.2°208°1,331.2ft26.9°
New Hampshire1,131.5ft23.3°153°362.2ft7.9°32°844.6ft17.8°
New Jersey673.1ft14.4°125°68.9ft1.5°30°372.0ft8.1°
New Mexico1,704.9ft33.0°276°191.6ft4.2°10°979.1ft20.5°
New York1,428.0ft28.5°161°554.2ft11.9°66°997.8ft20.8°
North Carolina1,229.3ft25.1°69°261.7ft5.7°126°754.1ft16.0°
North Dakota347.5ft7.5°44°114.8ft2.5°115°281.1ft6.1°
Ohio115.4ft2.5°98°19.9ft0.4°68.7ft1.5°
Oklahoma569.1ft12.2°205°0.2ft0.0°281°257.0ft5.6°
Oregon2,440.3ft42.9°58°970.1ft20.3°181°1,776.5ft34.1°
Pennsylvania325.3ft7.1°338°19.4ft0.4°39°148.6ft3.2°
Rhode Island117.7ft2.6°104°20.8ft0.5°208°69.8ft1.5°
South Carolina799.9ft17.0°301°196.2ft4.3°132°528.5ft11.4°
South Dakota1,261.6ft25.7°347°474.3ft10.2°158°841.5ft17.8°
Tennessee1,378.3ft27.7°141.2ft3.1°262°759.5ft16.1°
Texas2,668.5ft45.5°224°593.6ft12.7°72°1,389.8ft27.9°
Utah1,884.1ft35.7°275°295.9ft6.4°203°1,219.3ft24.9°
Vermont1,518.2ft30.0°113°405.7ft8.8°196°1,067.0ft22.1°
Virginia1,011.2ft21.1°321°276.2ft6.0°208°568.2ft12.2°
Washington1,424.1ft28.5°24°302.5ft6.6°205°911.1ft19.1°
West Virginia1,298.1ft26.3°150°79.4ft1.7°27°571.9ft12.3°
Wisconsin162.5ft3.5°246°23.3ft0.5°296°120.0ft2.6°
Wyoming2,093.6ft38.6°322°857.3ft18.1°187°1,491.7ft29.6°
District of Columbia164.4ft3.6°66°19.9ft0.4°201°100.9ft2.2°
American Samoa1,630.0ft31.8°156°91.1ft2.0°272°775.3ft16.5°
Guam947.3ft19.8°235°87.7ft1.9°156°494.3ft10.7°
Northern Marianas Is0.0ft0.0°0.0ft0.0°0.0ft0.0°
Puerto Rico1,296.1ft26.3°193°426.6ft9.2°121°936.8ft19.6°
US Virgin Is962.8ft20.1°158°205.9ft4.5°112°636.5ft13.6°

* – Note that Connecticut is measured from Mount Frissell, MA (the summit) versus the contour line on the CT/MA border.
* – Note that Northern Marianas Islands has no spot elevations

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