"Close to home" has been the keyword for my hiking microadventures recently and Peak 4916 in the Danskin Mountains of southwestern Idaho fits that requirement. It was too cold, rainy and windy for my liking and in parts, way too steep, but I pushed on anyway. What do I mean when I say steep? Steep, as in having to scramble and hold on to rock handholds so I wouldn't slide over a ledge.
|Peak 4922 is on this ridge line. Doesn't look all that steep, does it?|
The Weather SuckedI'm a big fan of hiking in shorts and a sweatshirt. The weather forecast indicated that would be appropriate attire. The actual weather dictated long pants and a jacket. I had the jacket but long pants were sitting at home on this Tuesday, April 11, 2017, hike.
Private/Public Land InterfaceAll the research showed I could make it to the ridgeline and Peak 4922 without venturing through private property. I'm relatively certain I never stepped foot on anything other than public land during the hike.
It was tempting to bag a nearby "privately owned" summit, Peak 4950, located a short 275 yards to the north on that ridgeline, but I didn't. I also had a number of grazing allotment fences to step over or crawl under during this out-and-back hike.
|Peak 4922 Rock Cairn and Tim Bondy|
Steep, It WasThe last 1,000 feet to the ridgeline summit was a little scary for me. Being a solo hiker, the opportunity to get hurt and spend hours waiting for help is not something I wish to experience. I was on my hands and knees during a part of that ascent.
There were also a few times I thought about heading down to find a safer route back up. The only problem with the retreat plan was scrambling down was just as, if not more nerve-racking than plodding forward. So I kept moving up. Obviously, the fear was all mine and I was in no danger of falling off planet earth.
The steep part of the scramble averaged a 30% slope with a max of 63%. I'd say that 50+% slope portion was probably where I felt a little exposed? Yeah ... probably.
The Particulars Of The Hike
- Total Length: 2.88 miles trailhead to trailhead
- Elevation Gain/Loss: 1,461 feet
- Slope: Avg. = 17.1% and Max. = 63.1%
- Total Time On Trail: 2:50 hours
- Trailhead Coordinates: 43.277794, -115.677721
- Peak 4922 Coordinates: 43.284738, -115.664381
- 7.5' Quad Topo Map: Syrup Creek, Idaho
- See more photos: https://goo.gl/photos/gZ4YLCJoRCJm1XH18
- This is a cross-country hike with no official trails to the summit. A "point-your-nose-and-go" summit.
|A possible hike in April 2017. - Off Syrup Creek Road.|
Another Peak Spotted
I've been asked how I figure out what peaks I will be hiking in the future. Research is the answer I give most times. However, sometimes during a hike, I'll spot an interesting route in the distance that looks 'doable.' And during this hike, I spied Peak 4702.
The route is likely located on 100% public lands but only time will tell. Sometimes we get there, only to find "No Trespassing" signs and other time, like on April 11, 2017, it's a park, hike, and drive away all on public lands.
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Originally published on April 13, 2017.
Freelance Writer & Citizen Journalist
I am currently a proud citizen journalist, aka "enemy of the American People!"
In decline: The City of Mountain Home, Idaho is in a steady state of decline. My advice is to stay away from my hometown.