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Long Tom Mountain, Idaho | September 2022

K7VK's picture
Voice Cellular Coverage: 
Decent, workable
Data Cellular Coverage: 
Decent, workable
Cellular Provider: 
APRS Coverage: 
Don't know

Long Tom Mountain is a long forest road drive mostly through burned forest. The current Long Tom Lookout built in 1977 is ½ mile south of the SOTA summit. Interesting that reports from The Recorder Herald, Salmon ID, state that the Spring Creek Road to the Lookout was completed in 1932 and that the first radio receiving and sending unit was installed at the Lookout in 1934 and high frequency radio in 1950. 

There are great views of the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness Area and remote sections of the Salmon-Challis National Forest.  Many snags still exist and carrying in your vehicle a chain or hand saw is highly recommended as well as being observant of hazardous snags while hiking, camping or summit operating.  Amazingly many of these remote summits near the Salmon River do have cell phone coverage apparently from the Salmon ID area. 

Non-Trail Miles:  0.5 round trip

Elevation Gain:  170’

Water: None 

Bear Spray: Recommend for all ID/MT summits and hikes.

Camping: A few scattered openings without snag hazards exist along road #123.     

Map:  USFS Bitterroot National Forest

Directions: This remote country is accessible by a road system from the Salmon River or West Fork Bitterroot River road system.  From Darby MT travel south on highway #93 and turn south onto the West Fork Bitterroot River Road.  Travel that road system beyond Painted Rocks Reservoir on county road #9600 and continue up on FS road #91 to Horse Creek Pass.  From Horse Creek Pass travel approximately 2.5 miles southeast on FS #44 to the junction with the Spring Creek Road FS#123 heading southwest.  At this junction turn right and travel on the Spring Creek Road #123 (turns into #166) for approximately 19.5 miles.  The last ½ mile got too steep for my camper tolerance so K7PX and I parked and hiked up the road. From Road #123 when at the first ridge see an old ‘fire break’ cleared up the ridge to the summit.  Hike ¼ mile up this old cleared ‘fire break’ to the summit.  The summit has a small grove of living trees for shade and for hanging wire antennas.