Montana Outdoors

July 6, 2008

Penrose Peak, Part 1

On the south side of the Clark Fork River in western Montana, about a hundred miles south of Canada and thirty miles east of Idaho, the Cherry Peak roadless area occupies 59 square miles of the Coeur d’Alene Mountains, and its two highest peaks, Cherry at 7,165 feet and Penrose at 7,073 feet stand nearly a mile above the valley on the east side of the roadless area.

Seeing them is one thing: they can be plainly seen for miles from Montana Highway 200 along the Clark Fork river. Seeing them up close and personal is something entirely different. A little later this afternoon I will head out to spend a couple of nights up in the area, and will post my accounts of the trip a little later in the week. The route I have chosen to take will follow the route of an old road for about six miles past the trailhead where it will intersect with USFS trail 385 to the peak.

Where I will stay tonight will depend on the conditions I encounter at the trailhead, but Monday night I will be at or near the top of Penrose, the sharp peak about in the center of the first photo; the one with a few snow banks still showing (which should give a little relief from the heat we’ve been having for the past week).

Penrose Peak from the Clark Fork Valley

Penrose Peak

Penrose Peak from the top of Sacajawea Peak
This photo was taken in June of 2007.

Penrose Peak

Penrose Peak from the trail just north of Sunset Peak
This photo was taken in October of 2007.

Penrose Peak

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