Another trip I have long wished to make came to fruition last summer. My family and I spent four days in Idaho’s Seven Devils range. This one for me was less about photography and more about enjoying some real alpine scenery, taking my son on his longest backpack so far and getting him to the summit of He Devil, since he was really hoping to climb something significant this year. All those hopes worked out just fine. The scenery was outstanding even if photography conditions were only so-so, but I still came away with some enjoyable images.
One pleasure of the area was its population of not at all shy mountain goats. This one seemed downright determined to have his picture taken.
We base camped at Sheep Lake, a quite large jewel of water surrounded by most of the highest peaks of the range: He Devil, She Devil, Mount Baal and the Tower of Babel.
We did manage to summit He Devil on our second day and enjoy absolutely massive from the Wallowas to the Salmon River and Clearwater Mountains and into the depths of Saqanma (Hells Canyon) 8,000 feet below. What I wouldn’t give to be up there for a sunrise! Future plans definitely include trips to spend time around that rim between the peaks and the canyon.
As I wrote in regard to Hells Canyon, I’m not really thrilled about the Paradise Lost cum witches sabbath names imposed on these mountains, though I have to admit they have something of a grim aspect with their dark, unaccommodating metabasalt cliffs.
The Nez Perce seem to have called the range Siseqiymexs, which apparently translates to Syringa Mountains. Syringa is the Idaho state flower, so that’s a nice thought. But one still has to work with the names of the individual peaks, which as far as I can discover did not have their own indigenous names. Whatever, it’s beautiful country by any name, and it’s a place I’ll definitely be revisiting.