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U.S. National Forest High Points

Public Land in New Reorganized Forest Units

Showing Bill Hebert's most recent ascent dates for climbed peaks (49 out of 110, or 44.55%)

RankLand NamePeak Elev-M
(Avg)
StateAscent Date
1.Inyo National ForestMount Whitney4419California1979-08-09 A
2.Pike and San Isabel National ForestMount Elbert4399Colorado1999-08-15
3.Rio Grande National ForestBlanca Peak4372Colorado2001-08-15
4.Grand Mesa-Uncompahgre-Gunnison National ForestUncompahgre Peak4361Colorado1974-08 a
5.Arapaho and Roosevelt National ForestGrays Peak4349Colorado 
5.White River National ForestGrays Peak4349Colorado 
7.San Juan National ForestMount Wilson4342Colorado 
8.Shasta-Trinity National ForestMount Shasta4317California2012-08-19
9.Sierra National ForestMount Humphreys4263California 
10.Bridger-Teton National ForestGannett Peak4207Wyoming1998-08-27
10.Shoshone National ForestGannett Peak4207Wyoming1998-08-27
12.Ashley National ForestKings Peak4123Utah2003-07-04
13.Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National ForestGilbert Peak4097Utah2003-07-04
14.Chugach National ForestMount Marcus Baker4016Alaska 
15.Bighorn National ForestCloud Peak4013Wyoming1976
16.Carson National ForestWheeler Peak4011New Mexico2003-05-01
17.Santa Fe National ForestTruchas Peak3993New Mexico1993-09-03
18.Medicine Bow-Routt National ForestMount Richthofen3944Colorado 
19.Custer National ForestGranite Peak3901Montana1983-08-27
19.Gallatin National ForestGranite Peak3901Montana1983-08-27
21.Manti-Lasal National ForestMount Peale3877Utah1991-08-01 a
22.Salmon-Challis National ForestBorah Peak3859Idaho1973-08-01
23.Coconino National ForestHumphreys Peak3851Arizona2003-04-15
24.Sequoia National ForestFlorence Peak3789California 
25.Humboldt-Toiyabe National ForestDunderberg Peak3772California 
26.Gifford Pinchot National ForestMount Adams3742Washington1978-07-22
27.Caribou-Targhee National ForestDiamond Peak3718Idaho 
28.Fishlake National ForestDelano Peak3709Utah 
29.Sawtooth National ForestHyndman Peak3660Idaho 
30.Lincoln National ForestLookout Mountain3530New Mexico 
31.Stanislaus National ForestLeavitt Peak3526California 
32.San Bernardino National ForestSan Gorgonio Mountain3505California2003-07-25 a
33.Apache-Sitgreaves National ForestMount Baldy-North Peak3481Arizona2005-05-13
34.Beaverhead-Deerlodge National ForestHilgard Peak3449Montana 
35.Dixie National ForestBrian Head3446Utah 
36.Cibola National ForestMount Taylor3445New Mexico 
37.Mount Hood National ForestMount Hood3426Oregon1977-08-16
38.Gila National ForestWhitewater Baldy3321New Mexico 
39.Lake Tahoe Basin Management UnitFreel Peak3317California1985-07-04 a
40.Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National ForestMount Baker3286Washington1979-08-27
41.Coronado National ForestMount Graham3267Arizona1982-03-01
42.Willamette National ForestMount Jefferson3199Oregon2012-08-28
43.Kaibab National ForestKendrick Peak3175Arizona 
44.Eldorado National ForestRound Top3164California1984-06-01
45.Deschutes National ForestSouth Sister3157Oregon2012-09-08
46.Bitterroot National ForestTrapper Peak3096Montana 
47.Angeles National ForestMount San Antonio3068California2014-01-05
48.Tongass National ForestKates Needle3053British Columbia/Alaska 
49.Modoc National ForestEagle Peak3015California2012-08-24
50.Wallowa-Whitman National ForestSacajawea Peak2999Oregon1998-09-15
51.Boise National ForestSteel Mountain2966Idaho 
52.Payette National ForestMormon Mountain2909Idaho 
53.Okanogan-Wenatchee National ForestBonanza Peak2899Washington1977-09-12
54.Helena National ForestMount Edith2896Montana 
55.Rogue River-Siskiyou National ForestMount McLoughlin2894Oregon2012-09-02
56.Nez Perce National ForestShe Devil2871Idaho 
57.Lewis and Clark National ForestRocky Mountain2863Montana 
58.Flathead National ForestLowary Peak2856Montana 
59.Lolo National ForestScapegoat Mountain2805Montana 
60.Fremont-Winema National ForestMount Thielsen2799Oregon 
60.Umpqua National ForestMount Thielsen2799Oregon 
62.Tahoe National ForestMount Lola2788California1986-09-05
63.Malheur National ForestStrawberry Mountain2761Oregon 
64.Klamath National ForestCaesar Peak2719California 
65.Los Padres National ForestMount Pinos2692California2003-08-08 a
66.Clearwater National ForestRanger Peak2687Idaho 
67.Kootenai National ForestSnowshoe Peak2663Montana 
68.Lassen National ForestCrater Peak2647California1995-09-17
69.Plumas National ForestMount Ingalls2552California 
70.Mendocino National ForestSouth Yolla Bolly Mountain2467California1999-08-26
71.Prescott National ForestMount Union2432Arizona2014-02-01
72.Tonto National ForestMyrtle Point2420Arizona2014-02-16
73.Umatilla National ForestVinegar Hill Northeast2416Oregon 
74.Idaho Panhandle National ForestSouth Selkirk Crest2352Idaho2003-09-22
75.Colville National ForestGypsy Peak2237Washington1998-09-30
76.Black Hills National ForestBlack Elk Peak2204South Dakota 
77.Olympic National ForestMount Fricaba2176Washington 
78.Six Rivers National ForestSalmon Mountain2120California1995-09-15
79.Ochoco National ForestLookout Mountain2111Oregon 
80.National Forests in North CarolinaBalsam Cone2018North Carolina 
81.Cleveland National ForestMount Laguna1920California1999-02-04 a
82.Cherokee National ForestRoan High Knob1916North Carolina/Tennessee2003-10-18
83.White Mountain National ForestWhite Mountain National Forest High Point1872New Hampshire1975-09-01
84.George Washington-Jefferson National ForestMount Rogers1746Virginia2004-06-01
85.Monongahela National ForestSpruce Knob1482West Virginia 
86.Chattahoochee-Oconee National ForestsBrasstown Bald1458Georgia2003-11-02
87.Nebraska National ForestSoldier Creek Wilderness High Point1448Nebraska 
88.Siuslaw National ForestMarys Peak1249Oregon 
89.Green Mountain and Finger Lakes National ForestsMount Ellen1244Vermont1975
90.El Bosque Nacional del YunqueEl Toro1074  
91.Francis Marion-Sumter National ForestFork Mountain1004South Carolina 
92.Daniel Boone National ForestPine Mountain-Harlan 2 Benchmark872Kentucky 
93.Ozark-St. Francis National ForestMagazine Mountain839Arkansas1991-01-29
94.Ouachita National ForestRich Mountain817Arkansas 
95.Allegheny National ForestAllegheny National Forest High Point722Pennsylvania 
96.Superior National ForestEagle Mountain701Minnesota1995-06-22
97.National Forests in AlabamaHernandez Peak-South Slope686Alabama 
98.Ottawa National ForestMarquette County High Point589Michigan 
99.Chequamegon-Nicolet National ForestVilas County High Point581Wisconsin 
100.Huron-Manistee National ForestBriar Hill520Michigan 
101.Mark Twain National ForestBell Mountain519Missouri 
102.Chippewa National ForestCass-Chippewa High Point498Minnesota 
103.Wayne National ForestWayne National Forest High Point405Ohio 
104.National Forests in TexasBall Knob Hill360Texas 
105.Hiawatha National ForestHiawatha National Forest High Point341Michigan 
106.Shawnee National ForestWilliams Hill324Illinois 
107.Hoosier National ForestBald Knobs-South Slope291Indiana 
108.National Forests in MississippiHolly Springs National Forest High Point223Mississippi 
109.Kisatchie National ForestWebster Parish High Point146Louisiana 
110.National Forests in FloridaOsceola National Forest High Point60Florida 

Front Runners List: Click here to see list completion progress by climbers that log their climbs using Peakbagger.com.

Multiple Ascents Grid: Click here for a grid showing all of Bill Hebert's ascents of peaks on this list (including up to 10 rounds of repeats).

Compare Climbers: Click here to compare ascents of up to 5 climbers working on this list.

List Description

National Forests and National Grasslands are publically-owned lands in the United States managed by the U.S. Forest Service, part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The 300,000 square miles of Forest Service land is managed for logging, grazing, habitat protection, and outdoor recreation. Sometimes confused with National Parks, National Forests are quite different—Forests are bigger, generally less popular, don’t charge entry fees, and allow managed resource extraction in addition to tourist activities.

There are about 155 named National Forests and 20 National Grasslands. However, this list of National Forest high points is based on a new reorganized list of 109 USFS-managed entities. It also only considers publicly-owned USFS land and no private or public inholdings.

Forest Reorganization

Over the past couple decades the Forest Service has been streamlining and consolidating their operations, and the actual management of their lands is now done by 112 new “combined forests”. Essentially, the USFS saw no distinctions between National Forests and National Grasslands, and no reason to honor traditional National Forest boundaries, so they re-organized their holdings as they saw fit to best manage their land.

Some traditional National Forests survived the re-org intact (for example, the Gifford-Pinchot NF, the White Mountain NF), but others were combined, sometimes into entities with bureaucratic names (for example, “National Forests in Texas”, “Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit”). Most of the former National Grasslands were merged into these new combined National Forests. The old National Forest names may still appear on signs and maps, but organizationally they don’t really exist anymore.

The high point list shown here uses 110 of these new National Forest entities, including the one in Puerto Rico. The only 2 excluded are a new USFS unit entirely composed of former National Grasslands (the Dakota Prairie Grasslands) and the relatively new Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie, both of which never had any traditional National Forest land in them.

One advantage of using this new, smaller list of National Forest high points is that many uninspiring peaks in lowlands areas are no longer on the list. For example, the new “National Forests in Mississippi” entity used to be six forests (Holly Springs, Bienville, DeSoto, Delta, Tombigee, Homochitto). In this case, the USFS desire for organizational efficiency aligns nicely with the interests of peakbaggers who prefer “real” mountains.

Inholdings

National Forests tend to have extremely convoluted boundaries. Many of them have a “proclaimed boundary” that may be somewhat regular, but only portions of the land within the proclaimed boundary are actually owned by the USFS. Much of this private land is on the edges of National Forests, but there are also many private inholdings surrounded by public land. There are also cases where an important mountain summit (Mount Washington, NH and Mount Mitchell, NC, for example) are within inholdings that are State Parks and not USFS land. The government is engaged in a long-term effort to purchase inholdings from willing sellers, but this is a very slow process.

This list only shows highpoints located on public Forest Service land. Higher land located on private property within the proclaimed boundary is ignored. Please e-mail the webmaster if you see any errors where a high point on private land is listed.

Acknowledgments

Thanks to Roy Schweiker and David Olson, who did much original research on a preliminary list (see link below).

Links

     Preliminary National Forest High Points

 


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