Peak 7536 (Red Elephant Peak) by Livingston Douglas

Elevation: 7,536 ft
Prominence: 396

The summit cairn atop Peak 7536 with snow-clad Kelly Mountain (8,826 feet) in the distance. Livingston Douglas Photo

This peak is not in the book. Published December 2019


Peak 7536 is a beautiful peak that quickly rises almost 2,000 vertical feet from Croy Creek Road on the east side of Red Elephant Gulch. Its South Ridge makes for a good early-season climb when the mountains around Ketchum are still snow-laden. There is a lot of private property in this area, so be careful. Consult the BLM Fairfield map to stay out of trouble. USGS Richardson Summit

The summit cairn atop Peak 7536 with snow-clad Kelly Mountain (8,826 feet) in the distance. Livingston Douglas Photo

The summit cairn atop Peak 7536 with snow-clad Kelly Mountain (8,826 feet) in the distance. Livingston Douglas Photo

West Face, Class 2

Date of Climb: June 9, 2019

Access

From the junction of ID-75 and Bullion Street in downtown Hailey, drive W on Bullion Street. It becomes Bullion Road and then Croy Creek Road. It bends SW to follow Croy Creek upstream for quite a number of miles. From ID-75, drive W on Bullion Street/Bullion Road/Croy Creek Road for 6.8 miles to the unsigned junction with Red Elephant Gulch Road. Turn R/NW onto this unsigned dirt road. At 0.4 miles, you enter public lands (sign). At 1.5 miles, go straight (not R) at an unsigned junction to remain on Red Elephant Gulch Road. At 2.1 miles, go straight on a side road to reach a turnaround/campsite at a gravel pit area. The elevation here is 6,247 feet.

The Climb

From the parking area/campsite, scramble up the very steep West Face of Peak 7536 through thick sagebrush (with a loose shale base). You will find enough gaps in the sage to make the going feasible. You will soon reach a mining road. Walk briefly N on the mining road to find a shoulder heading up the West Face. Leave the road the climb up the shoulder. The face is not as steep here as it was early on. The terrain on the shoulder is more sage and loose shale. Grind your way higher until you reach the summit area. The East Summit is the high point.

Southwest Ridge (Descent), Class 2

Access

Same as for the West Face Route. This is the final leg in a loop route that begins and ends along Red Elephant Gulch Road.

The Descent

From the summit, descend W to the false summit. From there, follow the Southwest Ridge down to Point 6881. From Point 6881, continue SSW down the narrow ridge to reach Red Elephant Road at the toe of the ridge. The ridge terrain is mostly short scrub with some sagebrush to weave around. No rocky outcrops to contend with. Once on the road, hike N for 0.8 mile back to the parking turnaround/campsite.

Additional Resources

Mountain Range: Smoky Mountains

Longitude: -114.42079   Latitude: 43.49249

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