Ascent of Mount McGuire on 2012-09-29

Climber: Ken Jones

Other People:Solo Ascent
Only Party on Mountain
Date:Saturday, September 29, 2012
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Mount McGuire
    Elevation:10082 ft / 3072 m

Ascent Trip Report

I very nearly demonstrated the foolishness of solo climbing/backpacking on this one. I came down with the flu at camp, and had to hump my overnight gear out on Sunday *very* slowly. But I made it.

Drive to Crags Campground from either the Salmon or Challis areas. There are a lot of options for getting there, but eventually you want to end up on Panther Creek Road (USFS #55) where the Porphyry Creek Road (USFS #112) branches off. Follow this and the signs at junctions onto #113 and #114. There is a campground, a hiker parking lot, and a stock parking lot at Crags. At the time of my visit, the road forks were well signed to Crags Campground.

From the hiker parking it is a little over 8 miles on trail to Birdbill Lake where I camped. Some of the trails are not shown on my topo maps, so get a newer map or follow the GPS track attached. Generally speaking junctions were well-signed at the time of my visit. To get to camp, follow the pointers to "Bighorn Crags", "Crags Lakes", and "Birdbill ".

From camp I continued on the trail toward Airplane Lake. I left the trail too early and returned to it; you should follow it over the first saddle and through some quick switchbacks, and then follow the long northerly trending segment until it switches back to the south. You'll lose a little elevation, but you need to lose almost all of it to get around some bad terrain anyway and the trail is much easier going. From that northern switchback follow the line of least resistance cross-country toward the peak, which you should be able to see periodically. Look at the GPS track: my down route was better; it's the one that drops off the peak more directly (farther west). The whole thing is only class 2, but traversing on the boulders is tedious.
Summary Total Data
    Elevation Gain:4622 ft / 1408 m
    Extra Gain:1500 ft / 457 m
    Distance:21 mi / 33.8 km
    Route:Via Birdbill Lake, then SE Ridge
    Trailhead:Crags CG, hiker parking  8460 ft / 2578 m
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip

 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by Ken Jones
Click Here for a Full Screen Map
Note: GPS Tracks may not be accurate, and may not show the best route. Do not follow this route blindly. Conditions change frequently. Use of a GPS unit in the outdoors, even with a pre-loaded track, is no substitute for experience and good judgment. accepts NO responsibility or liability from use of this data.

Download this GPS track as a GPX file

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