Scenic USA - Idaho

McGown Peak

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McGown Peak - Custer County, Idaho

Photos by Terri Prepelka

   McGown Peak, one of the most photographed mountains in the Sawtooths, is best viewed from the Stanley Lake Overlook. Just west of the town of Stanley, along the western section of Idaho’s Ponderosa Pine Scenic Byway, this beautiful combination of Stanley Lake and McGown Peak is one of those must-see stops. The rugged peak was named after the McGown Brothers, known to run cattle in the area during the late 19th century.
   Today, McGown Peak is more than a scenic wonder. The north face is one of those ultra challenges for ambitious peak baggers. Lake Stanley Overlook - Stanley, Idaho Faced with extreme angles of 50 degrees, the 3rd and 4th class climb is usually covered in snow and ice.
   This cool blue mountain viewpoint is found at campsites 3 and 4, via Stanley Lake Road (FR 455). It's a campground with an exceptional view, located among one of largest sections of wilderness land in Idaho. When the Sawtooth Wilderness Area is coupled up with the neighboring Frank Church Wilderness, it makes up the largest tract of roadless land in the lower 48 states. For those seeking solitude and breathtaking scenery, the Ponderosa Scenic Byway leads the way.

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