This peak is included in a climbing guide to this part of MT:Alpine Ice & Rock Guide to Southwest & Central Montana by Ron Brunckhorst. Gives route info for the Y couloirs.
There are also some burly ice lines on this peak in the winter, those are in Brunckhorst's ice guide.
Here's a new guidebook that has information for Black Mountain. It's hot off the presses. Winter Dance: Select Ice Climbs in Southern Montana & Northern Wyoming by Joe Josephson gives excellent information for ice routes on this peak.
A trip report on a ski decent of the west branch of the y couloirs is on my website.
I'm confused, SP lists Francs Peak as the highest in the Absarokas, while you mention that Mt. Cowen is #1, followed by Black Mountain. Which is correct?
Ah, you are confusing the Absaroka Mountains of Wyoming with the Absarokas of Montana. They are completely separate ranges, and I think this is why SP lumps the Montana Absarokas with the Beartooths, but on every map they are separate ranges. Basically, there are two Absaroka ranges, as confusing as that may be.
Well, we should debate this. Are the two Absaroka ranges really just one big one? I vote we treat it that way, as a climbing community. Maybe the mountains between, say, Gardiner and Livingston should be "The North Absarokas." But I like including the Wyoming "Absarokas" in with the Montana ones. They're more or less joined. Confusing the issue, geologists today call the north Absarokas "The Beartooth Block." And what we call the Beartooths they consider just a side-block of the mountains between Gardiner and Livingston. (Even though they're higher.) Go figure.