Proctor and Ruud Mountain Loop

Sun Valley

Hilltop views in a steep hike close to town, and one of the world's oldest chairlifts.

Hiking Difficult

Distance
6.8 km
Ascent
517 m
Descent
517 m
Duration
2-3 hrs
Low Point
1.8 km
High Point
2.3 km
Gradient
14˚
Proctor and Ruud Mountain Loop Map

This hike combines great views over Sun Valley with a piece of its history––the Ruud Mountain chairlift, one of the world’s oldest according to Visit Sun Valley. You’ll pass the top of it near the end of this loop, which is a rewarding workout but very steep in places. Really the loop is good in either direction, but on a hot day you’ll want to start by heading up the canyon instead of tackling Ruud Mountain first. The canyon is partially forested and shaded, while the steep switchbacks on Ruud Mountain have no shade.

Description

Starting on Proctor Mountain Loop, going up the canyon, the trail is uphill and fairly steep the whole time, taking a few switchbacks in and out of the forest to gain a ridgeline. From there, you’ll traverse beneath the summit of Proctor Mountain, through sagebrush meadows with wide-open views over Sun Valley toward Bald Mountain.

A steep downhill and a gentler uphill gets you on the ridgeline of Ruud Mountain, where views continue to be spectacular. That’s where you’ll come upon the chairlift, now defunct but enduring as a relic to Sun Valley’s rich history. From there the trail continues very steeply downhill to return to the road. Parking is at the edge of the neighborhood along Fairway Road. Be sure to respect private property and park only where allowed.

Difficulty

Difficult

Hiking trails where obstacles such as rocks or roots are prevalent. Some obstacles can require care to step over or around. At times, the trail can be worn and eroded. The grade of the trail is generally quite steep, and can often lead to strenuous hiking.

Medium Exposure

2 out of 4

The trail contains some obstacles such as outcroppings and rock which could cause injury.

Remoteness

2 out of 4

Away from help but easily accessed.

Best time to visit

April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November

Features

  • Wildlife
  • Historical
  • Picturesque
  • Summit Hike
  • Dog friendly
  • Wild flowers
  • Water features
  • Family friendly
  • Forestry or heavy vegetation

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area