With a reprieve from one of the smokiest summers ever in the Pacific Northwest, I finally make my introductory trip to the high alpine of the Boulder-White Cloud Mountains to ride the Little-Big Boulder Loop. The route skirts one of the newest wilderness areas of the United States, beginning at the East Fork of the Salmon River near the Livingston Mill, climbing to 9,500’ along Red Ridge, and descending the “chundery” trail along the Boulder Chain Lakes Creek.

An upward slough towards Livingston Mine.
An upward slough towards Livingston Mine.
 
The Livingston Mill was in full swing.
The Livingston Mill was in full swing.
 
Simple, vibrant colors in the forest.
Simple, vibrant colors in the forest.
 
Fall colors.
Fall colors.
 
A nice bridge - I was happy to not have to ford this creek.
A nice bridge - I was happy to not have to ford this creek.
 
Near the top, a small lake was nearly evaporated.
Near the top, a small lake was nearly evaporated.
 
One of the newest Wilderness signs in the county.
One of the newest Wilderness signs in the county.
 
At 9,000+ feet, I was taking plenty of breathers.
At 9,000+ feet, I was taking plenty of breathers.
 
 
 
 
Looking down on Frog Lake from Red Ridge - a long way to go!
Looking down on Frog Lake from Red Ridge - a long way to go!
 
Finally at the pass.
Finally at the pass.
 
Taking a breather with peak's 11,202 and 11,818 in the distance.
Taking a breather with peak's 11,202 and 11,818 in the distance.
 
The trail leading down from Red Ridge featured plenty of chunder.
The trail leading down from Red Ridge featured plenty of chunder.
 
Looking back up Red Ridge, with Frog Lake in the distance.
Looking back up Red Ridge, with Frog Lake in the distance.
 
Peaks 11,202 and 11,818 above typical White Cloud sagebrush.
Peaks 11,202 and 11,818 above typical White Cloud sagebrush.
 
A stop at Willow Lake allowed me to refill water.
A stop at Willow Lake allowed me to refill water.
 
Entering a meadow near the Little Boulder Creek.
Entering a meadow near the Little Boulder Creek.
 
Beautiful, mature forest.
Beautiful, mature forest.
 
Fall colors peaking through on Red Ridge.
Fall colors peaking through on Red Ridge.
 
Twisty switchbacks and fall colors.
Twisty switchbacks and fall colors.
 
Autumn in the White Clouds.
Autumn in the White Clouds.
 
Beautiful afternoon light, with Merriam Peak nearly hidden behind the forest.
Beautiful afternoon light, with Merriam Peak nearly hidden behind the forest.
 
Cliché fall photo.
Cliché fall photo.
 
Nearing the end of the major descent, it was mostly flat riding from here.
Nearing the end of the major descent, it was mostly flat riding from here.
 
Looking back at the ridge I rode down.
Looking back at the ridge I rode down.
 
 
 
Leaving the forest, and the landscape drastically changes.
Leaving the forest, and the landscape drastically changes.
 
Fin!
Fin!
 
Rock features along the East Fork of the Salmon.
Rock features along the East Fork of the Salmon.
 
Autumn in full swing along the East Fork of the Salmon.
Autumn in full swing along the East Fork of the Salmon.
 

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