Lake Thirty-three – Mount Heinous, (Day 1) Payette National Forest, Idaho

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Many of my regular blog followers know of my climbing partner John. John has been climbing the peaks around McCall for longer than either of us care to talk about. Well, John has an office wall completely covered with a USGS map of this area with every peak of prominence (more than 300 feet of prominence) is marked with a colored stick pen. There are about 150 pins in his wall map. A few years ago, John showed me the map and almost all the pins were blue….. just a hand full were red. The red ones as it turned out were the few peaks he had not climbed. Over the last couple of years we have slowly been climbing those last few peaks and he has changed all the pins to blue. Except one! There is a reason these pins were red, these peaks are dang hard to get, and this last one proved to be super hard!!!! See John’s full trip report here: http://www.splattski.com/2020/heinous/index.html

To get to that last peak, which to this point had no name other than its elevation of 8340, we needed to take a two day journey back into one of the deepest parts of the Payette National Forest. Below, is a view looking down the top part of Lake Fork Creek with Beaverdam Peak on the left. See my trip report from last year when we tried unsuccessfully to climb Beaverdam Peak. https://davefaitlemonde.com/2019/10/09/beaverdam-peak-valley-county-idaho/ (A special note here about Beaverdam Peak and the two other peaks below…. John has already climbed those, the pins are blue). The image above is looking the other direction toward the saddle we needed to climb up and over into Lake Thirty-Three where we planned to set up our base camp. Notice there is not much of a trail here. We had been here a couple weeks ago on a recon trip. https://davefaitlemonde.com/2020/07/13/lake-thirty-three-payette-national-forest-idaho/

Up and over the saddle down into Lake Thirty-Three. It’s a beautiful hanging lake but requires a super tricky full pack accent and decent over the saddle.

Despite our relatively late start, we arrive and set up base camp within about 3.5 hours and had the place to ourselves for three days. Below you can see the rock peninsula at camp and our tent on the shore adjacent.

We had a couple of hours to kill before dinner so we did a short walk to evaluate our target for the following day….. Peak 8430 or what we would soon name Mount Heinous. Its the shorter peak on the left with Mount Horrendous in the middle and The Spear on the right. See my trip report from last July when we climbed those other two peaks…… again, on a multi day trip. https://davefaitlemonde.com/2019/07/07/mount-horrendous-and-the-spear-valley-county-idaho-day-1-and-2/

It wasn’t long before we were at a small lake just to the east of Lake Thirty Three.

After what turned out to be a 2 hour adventure, we were back at the outlet of Lake Thirty-Three. In the background above John’s head is the saddle we had earlier descended with full packs. Notice here John has his day pack.

We were soon back to camp where a fishing competition broke out. Two former bike racers and at this point in life, everything becomes a competition! This one lasted for the next three days.

Sunset came soon enough and it was to bed early for what we knew was going to be a long day assaulting Mount Heinous!

Come back soon for more exciting photos from this multi-day adventure!

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