Grandmother Mountain Summit
Starting Elevation: 5854 feet
Summit Elevation: 6369 feet
Round Trip Distance: 5 miles
Elevation Gain: 755 feet
Elevation Loss: 240 feet
Grandmother Mountain is one of the first prominent
peaks of relatively high elevation heading east from Idaho's Hoodoo mountains. The views West from the summit are far reaching but the views to the East are even better. Great looks at Lookout Mountain
and Window Mountain as well as many other peaks which are very lightly traveled.
This region is part of the Grandmother Mountain Roadless Area
which is approximately 30,000 acres without even FSR access roads. The trail is Motorcycle accessible but even with that, I saw not one person on my hike.
One additional benefit of Grandmother Mountain is the presence of some very interesting rock. One friend has suggested that it is mica schist from my samples that the mountain is made up of. The mica flakes are huge in most of the rocks and along the trail and everywhere you look are bright sparkles of light reflecting off these flat crystals. Their is also prevalent wildlife in the area, deer abound and I also ran into a inquisitive ground squirrel and several grouse on my hike.
Summit view Grandmother Mountain East (6369 feet)
Getting to this trail head is an adventure in itself. From the small town of Clarkia, ID it is no less than an hour of driving to go 18 miles on a nice
forest service road that gets worse and worse until you can hardly do 15 miles per hour without rattling your head off your shoulders. No less than 8 miles of this approach road is done at over 1 mile of elevation.
Directions from Clarkia:
After entering town off Hwy 3 take a Left on Cedar St.
.5 miles turn Right on Sunrise St.
1.5 mile Sunrise becomes dirt
2 miles At intersection go straight onto FSR 301
6.4 miles from intersection follow FSR 301 Left
14.9 miles Follow FSR 301 Left again
18.2 miles Grandmother Mountain trail head and Sign
permitted but quad's, and snowmobiles are not. No trail head passes needed.
Camping Can be done along the access road at Squaw Spring (signed) but if one were to camp it would be advisable to continue on FSR-301 to the more developed campsites later on. Some of those sites even have pit toilets.