Elevation: 8,445 ft
This peak is not in the book. Published November 2022
Peak 8445 is the high point on a massive ridgeline that separates Dry Gulch from North Fork Deer Creek. It is most easily climbed via its northeast ridge from the North Fork Deer Creek Trail/FST-157. USGS Buttercup Mountain
From Albertson’s at the north end of Hailey, drive north on ID-75 for 1.9 miles to a signed junction with Deer Creek Road/FSR-097. Turn left/west onto Deer Creek Road and drive 9.9 miles to the end of the road at the Deer Creek trailhead (6,030 feet). The Deer Creek trailhead has a bathroom and ample parking. GPS coordinates: 43⁰31’44”N, 114⁰30’18”. Please note that the USGS map shows a Deer Creek Picnic Area (which no longer exists), fails to show the trailhead, and shows Deer Creek Road continuing much farther up Deer Creek than it actually does.
South Rib/Southeast Ridge, Class 2+
[Please note that a less-steep way to climb the southeast ridge is from its base at the signed junction of Deer Creek Road and North Fork Deer Creek Road/FSR-103. This junction is located 0.3 miles before the end of Deer Creek Road. This route avoids the steep south rib.]
From the Deer Creek trailhead, bushwhack directly north up a STEEP shoulder of loose gravel/scree and scrub. The slope eases after the first 400 feet or so and the terrain is easier scrub with less scree/gravel. Reach the merger with the southeast ridge and head left/northwest on gentler grade of scrub and scree/gravel with rocky ridge outcrops. The ridge bends left/west at 7,600 feet then bends back to the right/northwest at a ridge point/hump at 7,920+ feet. Continue climbing up the endless ridge to the east summit (Point 8380). The ridge traverse west-northwest to the true summit is on easy, open terrain (short scrub and broken rock). The summit has a modest cairn and is at a ridge corner.
Southwest Ridge, Class 2
From the summit, descend southwest on easy gravel and short scrub (decent for boot-skiing) then bash through some thick-ish scrub to reach Saddle 7589, which connects Peak 8445 to Peak 7903. This concludes the first leg of today’s 2-peak adventure. Peak 7903 is up next.