Ascent of Copper Mountain on 2019-07-20

Climber: Dan Krueger

Others in Party:Kate Wrablik
----Only Party on Mountain
Date:Saturday, July 20, 2019
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Copper Mountain
    Elevation:8966 ft / 2732 m

Ascent Trip Report

Kate and I left Boise Friday after work heading for Stanley. Our plan was to climb Braxon peak on Saturday (7/20). A few miles north of Grandjean we were stopped by a road crew who told us that ID21 was closed due to 2 forest fires, there was no way we were going to make it to Stanley Friday night! We drove back down and camped near Grandjean. The plan was to get up early and see if we could get to Stanley in the morning and still climb Braxon. We packed up and left at about 7:00 only to find the road still closed at mile marker 113... time for a new plan!

Having already climbed Bull Trout Point and Red Mountain, we were not excited about repeating those. We hiked out of Grandjean 2 weeks ago, so didn't really want to go back there. That left 2 decent sized peaks in the area... Cape Horn Mountain and Copper Mountain. I'd done a little research on both in the past, but with no cell coverage or map of the Cape Horn area we decided to climb Copper.

This turned out to be a good decision, Copper Mountain is a very enjoyable hike. There is no trail, but it's easy walking through the forest with no real bushwhacking to speak of. I thought about checking the bushwhack box because it's not really "open country" until you get higher up on the ridge. There are lots of down trees to step over and minimal brush, but nothing that'll really even slow you down. Once higher up, the forest opens up and its a walk through sparse sagebrush and grassland until you near the summit block, which is mostly chunky granite - easy class 2. It's a moderately steep steady climb, just over 2000ft in 2 miles. One interesting observation - every map I have looked at (except peakbagger) has Copper Mountain labeled as the point about 3/4 mile SE of the true summit. Standing at the summit it's very obvious that that point labeled Copper Mountain is lower.

Views along the way and especially at the summit are really great. We could identify Red Mountain to the SW, Bull Trout Point directly west, Cape Horn to the north, The White Clouds (especially Castle Peak) and the Lost Rivers (Borah) to the southeast, and of course the rest of the Sawtooths directly south. We spent over an hour at the summit eating and watching helicopters and planes fight the wildfire that had closed ID21 north of Stanley. The hike back down was pretty quick and easy. We found a better route on the most difficult part of the hike, which is the steep sandy slope we encountered at the beginning of the hike - so if you follow my GPS stay to the track on your right at the start of your hike.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:2116 ft / 644 m
    Round-Trip Distance:4.4 mi / 7.1 km
    Trailhead:6850 ft / 2087 m
    Grade/Class:Class 2
    Quality:6 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Open Country
    Weather:Pleasant, Calm, Clear
Perfect weather, except for smoke from forest fires
Ascent Statistics
    Time:2 Hours 45 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Time:1 Hours 30 Minutes
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip

 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by Dan Krueger
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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