We got a relatively early start on the day, driving the 77 some odd miles to the Big Southern Butte trail head in a little under two hours. It was a beautiful day, low 80′s with a nice breeze (it would get much windier once we were on the Butte). The skies were clear, but a haze settled in over much of Eastern Idaho for the day, which kinda put a damper on distant objects in our photos. Below is the route we took to get to the Butte trailhead. I included both the terrain as well as the satellite maps so you get a better idea of the surrounding landscape.
Below are pictures of the Butte from Big Southern Butte “Road.” I put road in quotations because if you don’t have a high clearance, four wheel drive vehicle, I would not even attempt driving down it. As you can see, you are really out in the middle of nowhere during the drive to the Butte. In the third photo is my hiking partner for the day, Vic. Oh, we also came upon a rattlesnake on the way. I think it is a Western Rattlesnake, Crotalus viridis. See the video at the bottom of this post, you can hear the rattlesnake shake it’s rattle. The last picture in the series is just to show you scale, as well as what the surrounding landscape looks like.
We arrived at the Big Southern Butte “Airport” and the drove up to the trailhead. As you can see, “airport” is a bit of an overstatement. We had some nice views even from the trailhead itself.
Below are the Trimble Outdoors and Endomondo pages for my hike (both up and down portions). I also included a screenshot of the route that Vic took, as it was slightly different up, as he was able to find a short cut. The trip down was the same for both of us. Total trip mileage for me was 6.16 miles, for Vic it was 5.42 miles.
When we finally reached the summit, the views were spectacular, but hazy. The fire lookout was in real disrepair (read near ruin), but there was an outhouse, how considerate! I took some pictures of the inside of the lookout, it’s a shame that some jerk(s) had to vandalize it. Also, why the hell do people not subscribe to the “Pack it in, Pack it out” philosophy?? There was a bunch of garbage people left in that fire lookout… Anyway, we hung out and had lunch, then headed back.
Finally, here is the video from the hike. Please pardon the shakiness as well as the general quality of it. I am an amateur photographer/movie maker at best.