Sawtooth Mountaineering by Frank Florence

Frank Florence on the East Face of Borah.

Editor’s Note: Sawtooth Mountaineering was Boise’s first climbing shop. It was founded by Lou and Frank Florence. The shop was an important link between many of Idaho’s premier climbers and the development of Idaho’s technical climbing scene. Bob Boyles (quoted in the book at page 23) noted the shop’s importance as a hub for local climbers, stating “the thirty or … Continue reading

The Missing Link: Norman Clyde in Idaho

Idaho is a virtual sea of mountains. While there is no doubt that Native Americans rambled across the state’s mountain summits and that explorers, trappers, miners, ranchers, surveyors and locals were climbing Idaho’s mountains from the time Lewis and Clark first passed through the state, there are few recorded accounts of these early ascents. When I wrote, Idaho: A Climbing … Continue reading

An 1884 Ascent of Mount McCaleb by J.D. Martin

[Editor’s note: J.D. Martin was an early settler of the Lost River valley. As he was nearing his 90th year he wrote a memoir covering the early history of the Lost River area which was published in installments in the Arco Advertiser. This portion covers his ascent of Mount McCaleb in 1884. It also references other ascents of mountains in … Continue reading

Mountain Peaks: Determining the True Summit and the True Elevation by Livingston Douglas

Mountain climbers and obsessive peak-baggers have a common goal: to stand atop a specific mountain or series of mountains. It is generally accepted that you must stand on the highest point of a mountain to claim a successful ascent. Thankfully, about 95% of the time, there is no dispute as to the mountain top’s exact location (true summit) and its … Continue reading

A Sawtooth Range Glacier

This article from the Idaho Statesman was published August 1,1926.. In 2018 we know there are no active glaciers in Idaho. Pettit Lake is the only landmark mentioned in the article so it is safe to assume that the glacier was located west of the lake. Based on the distance and size measurements set forth in the article as well … Continue reading

Castle Peak and Molybdenum

Castle Peak from Peak 10405.

In the 1960s the American Smelting and Refining Company was preparing to develop an open pit molybdenum mine on the north side of Castle Peak. The remnants of the company’s extensive mining camp are still standing below the peak. There is a good summary of the dispute on the Boulder White Clouds Council’s website: The Battle for Castle Peak. This … Continue reading