Ryan Peak is the northernmost major point in the Big Hole Mountains, a subrange of the Snake River Range of Eastern Idaho. Relay ridge is the name given to the long ridge that leads north until the range gradually dissipates into rolling highlands.
To get to Relay Ridge and Ryan Peak, the best route is to come from ID-33 between Rexburg and Driggs, Idaho, although it is possible to approach through forest roads to the south. At Canyon Creek Road, the entrance to Green Canyon Hot Springs, head south. Pass the hot springs area and continue until the pavement ends in about two miles, passing a parking area and crossing a gulch. After crossing a cattle guard and a small yellow house on your left, turn left. If it is earlier spring, FR-328 would be a good route to take, further down Canyon Creek Road. The hike to the summit up the west face should be quite a steep little run.
If you are driving up FR-218 to the summit, stay on the designated route. The road is posted as winter range use from November until may. Keep this in mind any earlier because you can still get stuck in snow drifts high on the mountain even in June. (See When to Climb.)
When To Climb
This peak can be climbed all year with snowshoes. During the winter there are a few snowmobilers that cruise up and down the ridge. There are guided tours that come out of Teton Valley and locals that come from the west. I don't believe that there is high traffic in the area, however. The only difficult part would be getting to the mountain itself during winter.
From personal experience, the road is still snowy after entering the forest off the main road in late April, and may not be passable by 4WD only. I got turned around at a snow drift near the national forest boundary at 6800 feet in late April of 2004, after passing icy sections lower (see map). By mid may you will be within a shorter hike to the summit. The road to the summit, however, isn't completely clear until July.
There is family camping at Green Canyon Hot Springs and pool,
(208) 458-4454 .
Mountain ConditionsWeather in Newdale, Idaho.
The Teton Cam shows the conditions across Teton Valley, and Ryan Peak should be similar to conditions about 2/3 the way up Table Mountain.
Although Ryan Peak is not a county highpoint, the Big Hole Mountains contain the county highpoints of Teton, Madison, and Jefferson counties, Idaho. Garns Mountain and Piney Peak are two of four possible highpoints in Teton County. Red Butte is the highpoint of Madison County. Jefferson County's highpoint is a spot elevation near Kelly Canyon.
Idahosummits.com trip report for Teton/Madison County Highpoints.
Teton County on cohp.org.