|Page Type:||Trip Report|
|Lat/Lon:||44.13740°N / 113.781°W|
|Date Climbed/Hiked:||Jul 29, 2021|
Summited Borah Peak for the seventh time on July 29, 2021. Weather was the issue today with the forecast predicting a 60% chance of afternoon thunderstorms. The forecast panned out with the first clap of thunder rocking the skies at 11:45 in the morning.
Knowing that the weather was going to create a small window of opportunity to summit today, I was on the trail by 4:40 am. To start the day, there were only eight people (four groups of two) on the mountain and seven of us stayed pretty close together. One of the original eight, turned around knowing that they were moving too slow to make the summit. Having been on top before, I led the way across Chicken Out Ridge. Last year on the mountain in 2020, there was a rope setup on “the nose,” a fifteen-foot downclimb off of Chicken Out Ridge. But today, the rope was gone. We carefully used the hand and foot holds in the rock to make the climb down the nose. This is definitely a section of the trek up where a mistake would not end well. All snow had melted from the where the snow bridge sometimes exists at the base of the nose. The seven of us spread out over the final push to the summit with the first group on top by 9:05 and the last by 9:25.
It was very pleasant on top with very little wind and a comfortable temperature. With storm clouds building to the east, everyone got their summit photos, had a quick snack, and were on the way back down by 9:45. Everyone kept moving steadily down the mountain and was able to stay in front of the storm. The storm kept building up and by the time I returned to the trailhead at 12:40, the upper parts of the mountain were getting pounded with rain. It didn’t look to be to much longer before the rain would reach the lower parts of the mountain.
During my descent, I met two other groups headed up at the tree line, told them both to turn around, but they kept on going. There is no way that they made the summit and I hope that they made it safely back down.
Borah Peak is one of my very favorite treks. The trail to the top is pretty much straight forward but unforgiving as it gains 5,200 feet over four miles. The views at the summit are amazing and on a clear day all eight of Idaho's other 12,000 foot peaks are visible. Today, the smoke from western wildfires tempered the view a bit. As it is everytime, it was a good day to be in the mountains.