Harrison Peak

Elevation: 7,292 ft
Prominence: 632

This peak is found on pages 38-39 of the book.


The following route description and photos are from the late Michael Darcy of CDA.

OVERVIEW

Harrison Peak at 7292′, though not the highest peak in North Idaho’s Selkirk range, certainly has the most striking profile. It stands guard over Harrison Lake, one of the Selkirk’s largest and most popular lakes. Technical routes are the standard on the north, south, and west faces. Only the east slopes offer a non-technical ascent.

TRAILHEAD DIRECTIONS

In Bonners Ferry turn west at the City Center sign onto Riverside Avenue. The City Center sign is just north of the Kootenai River Inn on US 95. Follow Riverside Avenue for 5.4 miles to the Kootenai National Wildlife Refuge. Continue past the KNWR on the paved road for 1.3 miles. Turn left onto signed Myrtle Creek Road 633. Travel 13.6 miles to signed FR 2409 which is the Upper Myrtle Creek Road. Turn right and travel 1.4 miles (with one switchback) to the end of the road. Harrison Lake Trail 6 begins here. There is parking for 6-8 vehicles.

HIKE/CLIMB

Trail 6 is well maintained and works up the drainage with a few switchbacks thrown in. Two wooden foot bridges traverse the only real stream and swampy ground. The trail levels out at the top of the drainage as it makes its way west toward Harrison Lake. On this level section look up and to your right to pick up your first good look at Harrison Peak as it periodically appears through some openings in the trees.

At this point, which is just over 3 miles up the trail, pick your best spot to plunge into the brush and go cross country. You will encounter some 6′ high brush. Fortunately, it ends quickly. Harrison Peak will remain in view throughout your ascent, so continue up aiming to reach the east slopes.

Once on the east slopes work your way up the boulder field. About 100′ from the summit you will encounter some flat sloping rock slabs which present the only Class 3 section. Once ascended, you simply have some ridge top boulders to pick your way through to the top. Your time from trailhead to summit will probably fall in the 2 to 2.5 hour range with an elevation gain of approximately 2400′.

The highest point on Harrison Peak is surrounded by a lot of air. Dig deep into the suitcase of courage and crawl up on your hands and knees if you so desire. It is best however, to get on your stomach and inch your way up.

ALTERNATE ROUTES

1. Continue west on Trail 6 until you reach the rock slabs that cross the trail. Begin your cross country ascent here.

2. Access to the Harrison Lake area can be reached via the Pack River Road 231 which is 10.5 miles north of
Sandpoint. Turn west off of US 95 and travel about 20 miles to reach Trail 217. The trailhead is obvious and well
marked and has plenty of parking. Follow Trail 217 until it intersects with Trail 6. Turn right and you will shortly
encounter the rock slabs that cross the trail.

ADDITIONAL NOTES

1. Myrtle Creek Road has a recently engineered 3-5 mile section of 40 `speed bumps’ to enhance your driving
experience.

2. If you choose to travel the Pack River Road, be warned that the final 6-7 miles is some of the worst road Idaho has
to offer.

3. `100 Hikes in the Inland Northwest’ by Rich Landers is the choice for a resource book. A 2nd edition has recently
been published.

Harrison Peak Michael photo4

Nearing the east slopes.

Harrison Peak Michael photo5

Boulder field on east slopes.

Harrison Peak Michael photo3

Typical terrain on the approach to the east slopes.

Harrison Peak Michael photo1

Harrison Peak with east slope boulder field on the right

Harrison Peak Michael photo2

South face of Harrison Peak.

Mountain Range: Selkirk Mountains

Longitude: -116.646323   Latitude: 48.6879861

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