Montana Outdoors

August 22, 2010

Cube Iron (3)

This set of photos was taken as I ascended the part of the trail that appeared to continue directly up to the peak. It did not. It made a sudden turn to the left and after a series of steep switchbacks, reached Cube Iron Pass, still below the summit of the mountain where it intersected with trail 1512. In the next post we will follow trail 1512 a hundred yards or so and then turn onto a small, unmarked and unmaintained trail that leads to the top.

There will likely not be a post tomorrow because I will be leaving in a few minutes on another trek into the Cube Iron-Silcox roadless area four or five miles to the south of Cube Iron Mountain, into the area of Goat lakes and Mount Silcox where I understand there is some very pretty scenery too. (And huckleberries!) Spending a rainy night tonight somewhere near the trail head should help with getting an early start on the trail in the morning. (Tomorrow’s forecast is “sunny”. They can be right once, can’t they?)

Cube Iron Mountain

Cube Iron Mountain

Arrowleaf buckwheatArrowleaf Buckwheat, Eriogonum compositum

Cube Iron Mountain

Cube Iron Mountain

Cube Iron Mountain

Cube Iron Mountain

Cube Iron Mountain

Cube Iron Mountain

Cube Iron Mountain

Junction of trails 460 & 1512

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24 Comments »

  1. What an incredible area to hike and photograph. Stunning color and contrast up there. Enjoy your trip. I can’t wait to see the other shots you bring back.

    Like

    Comment by Jeff Lynch — August 22, 2010 @ 5:56 pm

    • It is, Jeff. Also quite a challenge with the constant changing of light conditions and angles from the sun. Each time I go out I wish I knew a lot more about photography.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — August 24, 2010 @ 8:26 am

  2. I’m not sure if it is because of the time of year, or what, but I think this area is one of my favorites so far. So beautiful.

    Like

    Comment by kateri — August 22, 2010 @ 6:08 pm

    • It might be the time of year, kateri. This area is located where it gets more rain than most of western Montana and the elevation and shaded slopes keeps it cool so it’s all vibrant green. It’s also roadless and so it is an almost completely natural ecology.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — August 24, 2010 @ 8:29 am

  3. Can hardly wait for the next installment! What a beautiful, beautiful area. You’ve captured it well.

    Like

    Comment by Robin — August 23, 2010 @ 5:41 am

    • I’m glad you enjoy this area, Robin. I have many photos yet to post, most from higher up or on the top where the views are (in my opinion) wonderful. Yesterday’s trip added a hundred more photos to the portfolio of the Cube Iron – Silcox area too.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — August 24, 2010 @ 8:31 am

  4. Looks like a great area for hiking, not to mention single track biking!

    Like

    Comment by sciencedude288 — August 23, 2010 @ 8:34 am

    • Because of the steepness and ruggedness of these trails, biking is not at all popular. There are other areas that do get bike traffic.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — August 24, 2010 @ 8:33 am

  5. I want to go! Looking like a nice climb. Enjoy your next one and hope it did get sunny for you.

    Like

    Comment by Scott Thomas Photography — August 23, 2010 @ 2:15 pm

    • This was a great trail and very enjoyable. It was a little demanding mostly because of the total vertical climb involved. Also I carry more weight in my pack than usual because these are exploratory hikes for me and I don’t know just what to expect. Yesterday was sunny, but quite hazy, mostly due to smoke from the big wildfires in British Columbia. My photos weren’t great, but they will show some of the scenery.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — August 24, 2010 @ 8:36 am

  6. Now, I think I could handle that trail, but would be holding you by stopping at every blossom!

    Like

    Comment by sandy — August 23, 2010 @ 2:52 pm

    • I doubt that you would hold me up much, Sandy. I stop a lot to just look, take pictures, catch my breath and cool down. On yesterday’s hike I was perspiring almost from the start although the temp was 45° and there was a breeze blowing that made my fingers almost numb. Not as many flowers on that peak, but a beautiful one that I had never seen before.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — August 24, 2010 @ 8:38 am

  7. Great shots Terry, I have always wondered do you prefer going up or down a trail ?? 😉

    Like

    Comment by Bernie Kasper — August 23, 2010 @ 6:49 pm

    • Most of the day, I prefer going up, but after 5 or 6 miles on the trail, going down becomes more pleasant. It’s really a function of leg strength and condition. Going down a steep trail is much more demanding on the feet and legs.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — August 24, 2010 @ 8:41 am

  8. Love these mountains soooo much.

    Like

    Comment by Bo Mackison — August 24, 2010 @ 8:25 am

    • So do I Bo. Yesterday at the peak it was sunny, but the wind was down right cold. I sat for an extended lunch in the shelter of a rocky outcrop with a view that seemed to go on forever. I wished that others who really appreciate this wild country could have been there.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — August 24, 2010 @ 8:44 am

  9. Wow! The mountains and the skies are beyond beautiful! Great shots! What gorgeous country this is.

    Like

    Comment by Anna — August 24, 2010 @ 8:55 am

    • It is really gorgeous there, Anna. I also like the views from higher up on the mountain. I will be posting many more of those scenes.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — August 24, 2010 @ 12:24 pm

  10. If I lived there I’d be hiking everyday too! The view is astounding, and you capture it so vividly!

    Like

    Comment by Cedar — August 24, 2010 @ 9:05 am

    • I hike as much as I can fit in. I just returned from a very tiring hike last night and yet before I went to be I found myself studying my maps to figure out where the next venture would be.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — August 24, 2010 @ 12:25 pm

  11. Dang, it’s awesome.

    Like

    Comment by Candace — August 25, 2010 @ 9:48 pm

    • Makes it hard to stay away from those places, knowing what’s there!

      Like

      Comment by montucky — August 25, 2010 @ 10:06 pm

  12. I love this set of photos.

    Many times I have been thinking how long day trips You are making?

    Like

    Comment by sartenada — August 26, 2010 @ 10:51 pm

    • This trip was about 9 hours long. It was a fairly long and steep trail and I take my time to savor the experience. Most the the day trips that I go on are from 7 to 10 hours on the trail.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — August 26, 2010 @ 11:37 pm


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