Peak(s):  Red Pk A  -  13,215 feet
Hoosier Ridge  -  13,352 feet
Red Mtn C  -  13,229 feet
Date Posted:  09/06/2016
Date Climbed:   08/21/2016
Author:  Bez
Additional Members:   starsstuff
 Hoosier Ridge...from the other side   

The Ascent.

I had my eyes set on climbing Red Mountain for a while. I had previously climbed Hoosier Ridge back in January of 2013. It was pretty cold that day and decided I would return some day to climb Red Mountain.
My newest hiking buddy, Starsstuff tried to talk me into climbing Gray Wolf or Rodgers and Warren. Somehow, I managed to talk her into attempting a route on Hoosier and Red Mountain that I had not seen described before.
The plan was to approach from the east, up the Boreas Pass Rd, then take the FS801, past Selkirk Camp Ground and take the 801 to as far as we could go in the Subaru Forester I drive.

From there, the plan is to take the road to the pass, make a left turn and follow the ridge up to Red Peak and over to Hoosier Ridge and then the normal hike over to Red Mountain. And then return the same way. My eyeball estimate for the hike was 7.5 miles. We met at Morrison Rd and C470 at 5:15 am. Drove down 285 to Como, took the right turn there, drove the 4 miles to the Boreas Pass Rd, turned right then drove about another 3 miles, veered left on the Selkirk CG road. The first mile was a good 2WD road. After the camp ground turn off, the road becomes a rough high clearance 2WD or AWD road. We followed this road for about 3.8 miles to where the Forest Service has VERY recently closed the road. At about 10920 ft.
There were newly planted metal posts in the ground and the road has been filled with logs. This is not deadfall, but logs that have been dragged into the road by the Forest Service. As you hike up the road, there are several places where the road has been covered with logs. After the road goes over the pass, it has been closed there as well.

We started hiking at 7:30. We reached the top of the pass after 1.2 miles, at 11,700 ft. We then followed an old 4WD track that follows the ridge to the south. We followed this until the road started to far to the south. We turned right and started following the ridge toward Red Peak. From here, much of the route is as described by Bill Middlebrook in his Red Peak description. When we got close to the summit, we were faced with two humps to negotiate. One a little farther over to the left, south east and a westerly hump. We decided to go left of the westerly one. Where we found that the summit was actually ahead of us. From here, we climbed up on the ridge that extended from the western hump and pushed on to the summit. (I would recommend for future reference, to go right and around the western hump). On reaching the summit of Red Peak, there were 3 small cairns. Mileage from trailhead 2.58 miles.

From the summit of Red Peak, we followed the ridge line, maybe a little more on the right side of the ridge line over to Hoosier Ridge summit. There is actually a fair amount of "dead" ground viewing Hoosier from Red Peak. So it is further than it looks. On our walk/hike over to Hoosier from Red Peak, we liked the look of a possible descent of the north and north-east ridge of Red Mountain. It was another additional .71 mile to Hoosier, total 3.39 miles.

After a short rest and photo session, we retraced our steps for about 100 yards and started descending the north west facing slope toward Red Mountain. We descended the 500 or so feet to the saddle and proceeded up the other side, angling between the first two bumps ahead and then we reached the crux of this mountain, a band of white, large talus. Climbed up a little way straight on then there was a small ramp off to the left, followed this a little way and then slowly turned right toward the ridge and followed the ridge to the summit. There appeared to be two possible summits. We decided, after visiting both, that the one closer to Hoosier was actually the taller one. Distance hiked, 4.23 miles

The Descent.

After resting for a while, having lunch, we headed north from the summit and then turning slowly to the north-east. At 12,600 feet, at the sharpest turn in the ridge, we dropped down a shallow gully, being on the north east side of the ridge, the was a line of lingering snow. We dropped down just before the snow, and continued north east until we found a break in the willows, crossed what could be a small creek earlier in the year and started heading toward PT12331, the east side of the saddle, continued over a flat area and when we came to another drop in the lay of the land, here we were faced with plenty of willows so turned left into a small willow free gully and followed the gully down to another flat area, where the could be a small lake when there is snow runoff. We took a break just west of PT11734, (can be seen on the USGS topo map).
From here we continued east dropping down toward Pennsylvania Creek. Just before the creek, we found a jeep trail, decided not to follow it down, saving elevation, bashed through some willows, just a very short distance and found a reasonable place to cross the creek, it was a soggy climb out to a small clearing and then into the forest on the other side. Close to the edge of the forest, we located a trail heading up the hill, to the southeast. This trail soon joined up with the western half of FS801. We followed the road back to where we had found the Forest Service has closed the road near the top of the pass.
We scooted around the closure logs and headed down FS801 back to our starting point. Total distance 8.09 miles. Using contour line elevation gain, 3400 ft. Betters the Hoosier Ridge run of 10.5 miles, 3875 ft plus you get Red Peak!

My GPS Tracks on Google Maps (made from a .GPX file upload):

Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

Comments or Questions

great beta
09/06/2016 17:14
was looking at getting these three, the miles saved over the "standard" route will be nice


hiked this today
10/23/2016 18:09
Good route, its nice to not have to backtrack as you do on the standard route. I dropped off sooner on red mountain, and followed the faint jeep trail across the valley till it turned north, then bushwhacked through some meadows back to the trail. My GPS claims 3100 feet, 8.1 miles.


02/16/2017 21:55
Years ago, I made it to the Hoosier Ridge summit from Hoosier Pass, but couldn't continue on to the others. Nice to know there's an alternate route to visit the two Reds. I'll also be checking out Trotter's suggestion.


Route followed, almost
06/26/2017 16:04
Thank you for the post, what a great way to get all 3 peaks! I went out yesterday, loaded your track on my GPS and only changed the return. Seems there was a heard of Elk in that valley and they went right up the ridge you came down from Red Mt.C so i bailed off the side early into the rocks with my dog. I also wanted to avoid the willows and "ponds" down in there from all the snow run off. took the high route above the willows following the base of the peaks into the woods then made a track heading into the direction of the trail you had found. Seems it was the same distance. Great day out, did not see a single person but the ones camping on the road!

   Not registered? Click Here

Caution: The information contained in this report may not be accurate and should not be the only resource used in preparation for your climb. Failure to have the necessary experience, physical conditioning, supplies or equipment can result in injury or death. and the author(s) of this report provide no warranties, either express or implied, that the information provided is accurate or reliable. By using the information provided, you agree to indemnify and hold harmless and the report author(s) with respect to any claims and demands against them, including any attorney fees and expenses. Please read the Safety and Disclaimer pages for more information.

© 2021®, 14ers Inc.