Sawtooth – Baron Peak

Location Sawtooth National Forest, ID
Grandjean trailhead
Distance 13-14 miles (round trip)
Total Elevation Gain 5300-6000 ft
Topographic Map

A rarely visited 10er in the Sawtooths, despite it’s close proximity to the Grandjean trailhead. I summited late September 2020 and was the sixth party that year to sign the register. If I were to hazard a guess, it’s due to the brutal off-trail ascent to the saddle between Baron and Moolack peaks. You gain about 4k ft in about 2 miles. The section itself is also a nasty combination of dirt and scree that will have you sliding every which way.

However, the scramble to the top of Baron is an incredibly fun class three climb. Once summiting Baron, you can easily grab Moolack as well. Stupidly, I was meeting friends at Baron Lakes later that day, so did not have time. My topo map guess to go around the cliff bands looked correct from Baron. And the rest of the way up seemed straightforward.

  • A helmet is recommended, as the steep section near the end of Baron peak was chock full of loose rock. I sent a fucking missile down, which made me very glad I was by myself.
  • I suspect going earlier season might be ideal. The start of the route towards the saddle might be more easily navigated with some snow.

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