Gunsight Peak is named for its obvious twin-sided summit.
It is one of the taller peaks in the Boise Mountains. This height gives the summit good views into the surrounding ranges: Boise, Soldiers, and southern Sawtooths. It is a seldom-visited peak, probably seen by more hunters than hikers or climbers. We saw quite a few deer on our trip.
This is an easy climb with easy route finding, but the distance and elevation gain can turn it into a long day.
14.5 miles round trip
Approach & Climb
From the trailhead, it is a mellow trail for about 5 miles. At about 2 miles, there is a hot pool.
This is easy walking on a good tread that yields fast travel, but there are several creek crossings. The crossings were frozen when we climbed this peak (early November) but these are little creeks. Easily wadable, but probably even easier rock hops.
When you hit the toe of the south ridge, turn uphill and start bushwhacking. The early going is pretty brushy, but as you gain altitude the vegetation become more sparse and the ridge is easy to navigate.
The last couple hundred feet require rock hopping skills in loose talus. SOP here in Idaho.
Gunsight Peak is situated just north of the South Fork of the Boise River. Start by driving through Featherville, Idaho on an improved dirt road and look for the road sign for Willow Creek.
The road up Willow Creek is slightly rougher and quite narrow. The road is dirt, but passable by any passenger car. You will pass several camping areas along the way. At the end of the road, there is a turnaround and parking, concrete toilet, and horse-loading ramp. Lots of room to park.
|[img:767533:alignright:small:Sights along the hike]|
|[img:767529:aligncenter:medium:View to the west]|
|[img:767532:aligncenter:medium:View to the east]|
No red tape.
However, this is snow country, so check ahead with the Forest Service to determine if the road along the South Fork is open; it is not maintained for winter travel, and is completely closed during the winter to protect wildlife.
There are designated campsites along the South Fork, and more non-designated camping along Willow Creek.
If you drive PAST Willow Creek, a few more miles will see you at Baumgartner Campground, where there is a hot springs.
External LinksSplattski trip report