Idaho County Highpoint Trip Report

She Devil and He Devil

Date: July 28, 2012
Author: Adam Helman

Idaho State Completion

note: All coordinates are in the WGS84 datum.

This effort was part of a larger journey collecting Pacific Northwest county highpoints in summer 2012.

It is fully 122 road miles from the Monument Peak trailhead of Adams County, Idaho to the She/He Devil trailhead even though they are separated by only about 8 miles! This figure arises as follows -

The first 4.6 miles of FR517 is paved (until the National Forest boundary).

At the campground there are multiple unsigned trails going in various directions. This is confusing. The one leading south to Sheep Lake (and thence to She and He Devil) starts by going south from the camping loop where one turns, while driving, from south to east (at the campground's southwest corner). Do not take the trail immediately northwest, and beginning at the first camping spot south of the outhouse.

Nine hundred vertical feet later the trail reaches a grassy saddle, and promptly becomes difficult to locate beyond it. The trail's continuation is at (45.34000° N, 116.52520° W), elevation 8,476 feet.

I was unable to spot the trail there, and climbed willy-nilly along the south-trending ridge for several minutes before locating the trail's continuation as it heads downhill on the ridge's west (right) side to Sheep Lake. Should you too fail to follow the trail, note that it crosses the ridge at (45.33844° N, 116.52856° W), elevation 8,498 feet (this is Goat Pass).

Upon reaching the She/He Devil col (straight from the lake) I took a break and then climbed She Devil to my left (east). I got off-route while attempting to follow Petter Bjørstad's directions, climbed a 70° rock chute (20 feet), and found myself, suddenly at the "second gap" of his report. From She's tippy-top I photographed He Devil, figuring that a photo pixel analysis might shed light on the question of which is higher.

Viewing the east face of He Devil, and noting the absence of companions, I tuck my tail and decided to climb another day by descending all of 600 feet, aiming for this point at (45.32830° N, 116.54652° W), elevation 8,245 feet.

Then I traversed to the northwest ridge of He Devil, gaining the ridge here at (45.32575° N, 116.55332° W), elevation 8,719 feet. An 8,400 or 8,500 foot hanging valley was crossed between these two points during my traverse.

The main He Devil summit features a 4 or 5 foot tall pyramidal rock cairn. One must account for this when assessing it's height, by photographic means or otherwise, relative to She Devil ... and relative to a northern summit just 100 yards away.

For He Devil's south summit I obtain (45.32369° N, 116.54897° W) at 9,390 feet at the cairn's base.

For He Devil's north summit I obtain (45.32404° N, 116.54852° W) at 9,393 feet.

A typical elevation error for my GPS unit is at least 13 feet. Hence the above elevations are inconclusive insofar as deciding whether the north or south summit is higher. Visual observation was also inconclusive - they appeared to be just as high.

The north summit is most readily accessed by descending some 25 feet and then traversing on the left (west) side of the obvious gendarmes and pinnacles. Class 3.

I summited the north peak at 1:51 p.m. Mountain Daylight Time - so concluding without doubt my Idaho county highpoint efforts.

The total elevation gain for my day is computed as follows -

Adding these values one obtains 4,600 vertical feet. Elapsed time was 12.2 hours as 5:55 a.m. to 6:07 p.m.