Elevation: 10,592 ft
This peak is not in the book. Published December 2019
Peak 10592 towers over Hillside Creek to its south. It is the northernmost ranked summit on the Iron Divide, a ridge line that dead-ends at the South Fork of Big Creek to the north. The Iron Divide is not on the main Lemhi Range Crest, but it is no slouch. It holds massive peaks including Peak 10743, Iron Creek Point (10,736 feet), and Bear Mountain (10,744 feet). Peak 10592 offers a stunning view of the Pahsimeroi Valley to the west. USGS Big Creek Peak
Southeast Ridge, Class 2
Date of Climb: July 14, 2019
Access is via Big Gulch Road/FSR-099 [(C)(5) on Page 317]. Big Gulch Road is located along the Pahsimeroi Highway about a mile N of Summit Reservoir and exactly 6.6 miles S of the major road junction in Goldburg. Drive 2.0 miles up FSR-099 to the Challis National Forest boundary and park (7,180 feet).
This climb is the final leg of a ridge traverse from Peak 10743 to Peak 10592. From the 10,020-foot connecting saddle, follow the narrow ridge crest NW for about 0.6 miles to the summit of Peak 10592. The ridge, though narrow, is never knife-edged. The ridge terrain is a mix of talus/scree and some ridge pines/blowdown. Goat trails will help you skirt some of the ridge issues. There is only a minor amount of ups and downs. The terrain is never worse than Class 2. There is some serious exposure on the R/NE side of the ridge crest, so stay clear of that hazard.
The summit of Peak 10592 is a rocky ridge crest high point with scattered pines nearby. The high point is at the South End of the ridge crest area. There was a summit cairn about 100 feet to the N (and 10 to 15 vertical feet lower). I tore it down and built a new cairn on the high point.
Southwest Ridge (Descent), Class 2
Same as for the Southeast Ridge Route. This descent is the final leg of a loop route that begins and ends at the Challis National Forest boundary on Big Gulch Road/FSR-099.
From the summit, descend SW then S on the mostly-forested South Ridge. High up, the forest is open with a scree base. Lower down, the forest thickens and more blowdown appears while the scree base is replaced with pine duff. Lower down, the ridge becomes confusing as it becomes a face and forks into two different directions (SW and S). Stay near the L/E edge that has a view down to Hillside Creek and you will remain on the true South Ridge.
The ridge regains its definition at about 9,000 feet and you can now see a semi-forested ridge hump below you (Point 8940). Climb up a talus/scree slope then up through a section of pine forest to stand atop Point 8940. From Point 8940, descend an easy, not overly steep pine forest southward. The ridge bends L-ish/SE and the quantity of downed timber intensifies. At about 8,200 feet, the forest ends and the ridge opens up. Mountain mahogany and sagebrush take over. The ridge steepens considerably and the base becomes quite rocky (talus/scree). The final descent to Hillside Creek is very steep scrub with a loose gravel base, but a goat trail that switchbacks down this section is invaluable.
The Hillside Creek drainage is a tangled mess of a loose, angled talus hillside (on its R/W side) and thick willows around the creek itself. Look for an opening to cross the creek on a log in order to reach the open sagebrush on the L/E side of the creek. Head SE from the creek drainage on open sagebrush and angle down to about 7,500 feet. Contour at that level over to Big Gulch Road/FSR-099. Drop to cross Big Gulch Creek on two separate braids that are just upstream from a watery jeep road crossing of the creek. Follow the jeep road up to Big Gulch Road and hike a short distance up to the parking area at the Challis National Forest boundary.