Lehman Butte by Livingston Douglas

Elevation: 7,171 ft
Prominence: 471

Lehman Butte viewed from the NE at the 4-way road junction. The summit is the highest rocky hump, just left of center. Livingston Douglas Photo

This peak is not in the book. Published November 2019


Lehman Butte is a ranked summit located just south of the Mackay Fish Hatchery on BLM land. Drive to the Fish Hatchery area and park at the final road junction just before a side road heads to the fish hatchery itself. Barton Cemetery sits at the base of the North Ridge of Lehman Butte. The butte is a rough, rocky outcrop with lots of brush mixed in. There are lots of ways to twist an ankle or take a fall on this peak. Don’t take it lightly. There is private land nearby (on the Southeast Side). Be careful to avoid it. USGS Lehman Butte

Lehman Butte viewed from the NE at the 4-way road junction. The summit is the highest rocky hump, just left of center. Livingston Douglas Photo

Lehman Butte viewed from the NE at the 4-way road junction. The summit is the highest rocky hump, just left of center. Livingston Douglas Photo

North Ridge, Class 3

Date of Climb: May 26, 2019

Access

Fish Hatchery Road is located 8.9 miles north of the north end of Mackay, ID on US-93. Turn L/W onto [signed] Fish Hatchery Road and set your odometer to 0.0. At 2.5 miles, bear L at a 3-way road junction signed for the Fish Hatchery. At 3.7 miles, turn L/S at a road junction signed for the Fish Hatchery. At 5.1 miles, reach a 4-way road junction. Park here in a large pullout area (6,255 feet).

Sign for “Barton Cemetary” (mis-spelled) at the 4-way road junction. The easy, lower section of the North Ridge of Lehman Butte is in the background. Livingston Douglas Photo

Sign for “Barton Cemetary” (mis-spelled) at the 4-way road junction. The easy, lower section of the North Ridge of Lehman Butte is in the background. Livingston Douglas Photo

The Climb

From the parking area at the 4-way road junction, hike 0.4 miles up Barton Cemetery Road to the small, fenced cemetery. Bushwhack through thick sagebrush to reach the toe of the obvious North Ridge of Lehman Butte. The North Ridge is a mix of rock ribs, lichen-covered ground boulders, and sagebrush. There are some areas of open ground as well.

The summit area is a raised section of large boulders and sagebrush. It is a Class 3 scramble even when dry. When wet, it is treacherously slick due to the lichen covering the boulders. The summit high point is on a narrow ridge crest and is quite small. There is a USGS benchmark in a ground boulder and a small cairn on top. The North Ridge isn’t too bad until you approach the summit on a narrowing ridge crest and the boulders and thick brush take over. It then gets ugly in a hurry,

South Ridge (Descent), Class 3

Access

Same as for the North Ridge Route

The Descent

From the summit, follow the narrow ridge crest southward. The combination of lichen-covered boulders and sagebrush is wicked. It is a full-on Class 3 endeavor. You will soon reach a minor saddle and encounter the worst section of the South Ridge—the Class 5 South Summit. Skirt the R/W side of the narrow, steep rock/cliffed South Summit. After passing the South Summit, the ridge is much easier to handle.

Follow the South Ridge down to a jeep road at the base of the South Ridge. Hike NE then N along the jeep road as it passes a private ranch on the R/E side. A cattle fence demarcates the private/public land boundary here. Be sure to stay on the L/W side of this fence. After passing the ranch, the road takes a sharp R/E turn and drops to BLM Road #491. It reaches that road just N of the entrance to the ranch. The road turns sharply L/N here and heads N to the 4-way road junction and the parking area.

Additional Resources

Mountain Range: White Knob Mountains

Longitude: -113.83519   Latitude: 43.96339

Share this post ...Facebooktwitterredditpinterestmail

Comments are closed.