Scout your next climb in Idaho
He-Devil sits at 9,393 feet, the tallest peak in the Seven Devils. The northwest ridge route is a class 2 while the east ridge is a class 3 and the southeast face is a class 4.
The quickest access to the Seven Devils, Heaven's Gate Lookout, Seven Devils campground, and Windy Gap campground, is via US-95 just 1 mile south of the town of Riggins. Turn west onto Squaw Creek Road and travel 17 miles to Windy Gap and a right-hand junction to Heaven's Gate. Continue straight, past Windy Gap, until you reach the Seven Devils campground, in a quarter of a mile.
The quickest access to He-Devil is an old cross-country route that crosses above Mirror Lake through Goat Pass and then descends into Sheep Lake. This trail is no longer shown on Forest Service maps nor maintained, but is in fair condition and worth the cutoff in miles saved-a short 2 miles into Sheep Lake. The other approaches to Sheep Lake are FST-123, 8.9 miles from Windy Gap, and a strenuous cut-off along Sheep Creek from FST-123.
Stay right at the fork as you enter the Seven Devils campground. Proceed to the first campsite past the second set of restrooms and then begin looking for the trail on the right in the trees. The trail meanders out of the trees along a boulder field and then switchbacks up into and through the rock walls. The trail dodges to the right of the snow-filled notch which lies straight ahead. A few scrambling moves here will be necessary as the trail climbs quickly and is somewhat exposed. Once on top of the ridge, proceed onto the saddle and peer down into Mirror Lake and across to the Tower of Babel. This is a good spot for a rest or snack after the warm-up climb and pictures of Mirror Lake and Babel.
Scurt Mirror Lake basin on the right by continuing along the well-defined trail until you cross through Goat Pass, splitting the ridgeline, at a quarter of a mile past your previous resting spot. From Goat Pass the route drops through the cliffs onto the west side of the ridge down into Sheep Lake basin. To the west is the Devil's Tooth. Almost to the bottom, the trail cuts along a ledge and a vertical cliff. Be careful as you proceed along this route, for it remains unmaintained and can be the most dangerous section of the entire trip, including the scramble.
It may take you 3-4 hours to reach Sheep Lake from the campground. Once at Sheep Lake, proceed to the east of the lake along its boulder-strewn shore. At the far southern end of the lake you will encounter FST-123. Follow this well-maintained trail as it climbs through switchbacks to a saddle. Immediately leave the trail at this point continuing in a southerly direction cross-country. You will descend out of the trees into a bowl with He-Devil on your left. Continue for a half of a mile and climb out of the small bowl heading for the northwestern ridge above Gem Lake that splits the north and west faces of He-Devil.
Once on top of the northwestern ridge, and back into trees, peer down into Quad Lake. Continue now easterly straight up the ridge, hiking through the trees and around the rock towers. Scramble out of the trees heading toward the 2 summits that are only visible from the backside of Sheep Lake. The north summit is the tallest. Once you reach the south summit, continue to the north summit on the east side of the ridge.
From the top peer down on Sheep Lake. The north face of He-Devil is a sheer cliff. The closest peak to the east is She-Devil. To the north of She-Devil is the Tower of Babel. To the southeast of She-Devil is Mount Ogre. A large basin unfolds below She-Devil and Mount Orge to the east. Follow the ridge line from He-Devil south and pinpoint Mount Belial, the Devil's Throne, and Twin Imps. To the west is Hells Canyon and Oregon.