U.S. National Forest High Points
Public Land in New Reorganized Forest Units
|Rank||Land Name||Peak|| Elev-Ft ||State|
|95.||Allegheny National Forest||Allegheny National Forest High Point||2360||Pennsylvania|
|107.||Hoosier National Forest||Bald Knobs-South Slope||950||Indiana|
|104.||National Forests in Texas||Ball Knob Hill||1180||Texas|
|80.||National Forests in North Carolina||Balsam Cone||6600||North Carolina|
|101.||Mark Twain National Forest||Bell Mountain||1702||Missouri|
|3.||Rio Grande National Forest||Blanca Peak||14,345||Colorado|
|53.||Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest||Bonanza Peak||9511||Washington|
|22.||Salmon-Challis National Forest||Borah Peak||12,662||Idaho|
|86.||Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forests||Brasstown Bald||4784||Georgia|
|35.||Dixie National Forest||Brian Head||11,307||Utah|
|100.||Huron-Manistee National Forest||Briar Hill||1706||Michigan|
|64.||Klamath National Forest||Caesar Peak||8920||California|
|102.||Chippewa National Forest||Cass-Chippewa High Point||1630||Minnesota|
|15.||Bighorn National Forest||Cloud Peak||13,167||Wyoming|
|68.||Lassen National Forest||Crater Peak||8683||California|
|28.||Fishlake National Forest||Delano Peak||12,169||Utah|
|27.||Caribou-Targhee National Forest||Diamond Peak||12,197||Idaho|
|25.||Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest||Dunderberg Peak||12,374||California|
|96.||Superior National Forest||Eagle Mountain||2301||Minnesota|
|49.||Modoc National Forest||Eagle Peak||9892||California|
|90.||El Bosque Nacional del Yunque||El Toro||3533|| |
|24.||Sequoia National Forest||Florence Peak||12,432||California|
|91.||Francis Marion-Sumter National Forest||Fork Mountain||3294||South Carolina|
|39.||Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit||Freel Peak||10,881||California|
|10.||Bridger-Teton National Forest||Gannett Peak||13,804||Wyoming|
|10.||Shoshone National Forest||Gannett Peak||13,804||Wyoming|
|13.||Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest||Gilbert Peak||13,442||Utah|
|19.||Custer National Forest||Granite Peak||12,799||Montana|
|19.||Gallatin National Forest||Granite Peak||12,799||Montana|
|5.||Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forest||Grays Peak||14,270||Colorado|
|5.||White River National Forest||Grays Peak||14,270||Colorado|
|75.||Colville National Forest||Gypsy Peak||7320||Washington|
|76.||Black Hills National Forest||Harney Peak||7242||South Dakota|
|97.||National Forests in Alabama||Hernandez Peak-South Slope||2240||Alabama|
|105.||Hiawatha National Forest||Hiawatha National Forest High Point||1112||Michigan|
|34.||Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest||Hilgard Peak||11,316||Montana|
|108.||National Forests in Mississippi||Holly Springs National Forest High Point||720||Mississippi|
|23.||Coconino National Forest||Humphreys Peak||12,633||Arizona|
|29.||Sawtooth National Forest||Hyndman Peak||12,009||Idaho|
|48.||Tongass National Forest||Kates Needle||10,016||British Columbia/Alaska|
|43.||Kaibab National Forest||Kendrick Peak||10,418||Arizona|
|12.||Ashley National Forest||Kings Peak||13,528||Utah|
|31.||Stanislaus National Forest||Leavitt Peak||11,569||California|
|30.||Lincoln National Forest||Lookout Mountain||11,580||New Mexico|
|79.||Ochoco National Forest||Lookout Mountain||6926||Oregon|
|58.||Flathead National Forest||Lowary Peak||9369||Montana|
|93.||Ozark-St. Francis National Forest||Magazine Mountain||2753||Arkansas|
|98.||Ottawa National Forest||Marquette County High Point||1932||Michigan|
|88.||Siuslaw National Forest||Marys Peak||4097||Oregon|
|52.||Payette National Forest||Mormon Mountain||9545||Idaho|
|26.||Gifford Pinchot National Forest||Mount Adams||12,276||Washington|
|40.||Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest||Mount Baker||10,781||Washington|
|33.||Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest||Mount Baldy-North Peak||11,400||Arizona|
|55.||Helena National Forest||Mount Edith||9480||Montana|
|2.||Pike and San Isabel National Forest||Mount Elbert||14,433||Colorado|
|89.||Green Mountain and Finger Lakes National Forests||Mount Ellen||4083||Vermont|
|77.||Olympic National Forest||Mount Fricaba||7139||Washington|
|41.||Coronado National Forest||Mount Graham||10,720||Arizona|
|37.||Mount Hood National Forest||Mount Hood||11,239||Oregon|
|9.||Sierra National Forest||Mount Humphreys||13,986||California|
|69.||Plumas National Forest||Mount Ingalls||8372||California|
|42.||Willamette National Forest||Mount Jefferson||10,497||Oregon|
|81.||Cleveland National Forest||Mount Laguna||6299||California|
|62.||Tahoe National Forest||Mount Lola||9148||California|
|14.||Chugach National Forest||Mount Marcus Baker||13,176||Alaska|
|54.||Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest||Mount McLoughlin||9495||Oregon|
|21.||Manti-Lasal National Forest||Mount Peale||12,721||Utah|
|65.||Los Padres National Forest||Mount Pinos||8831||California|
|18.||Medicine Bow-Routt National Forest||Mount Richthofen||12,940||Colorado|
|84.||George Washington-Jefferson National Forest||Mount Rogers||5729||Virginia|
|47.||Angeles National Forest||Mount San Antonio||10,064||California|
|8.||Shasta-Trinity National Forest||Mount Shasta||14,162||California|
|36.||Cibola National Forest||Mount Taylor||11,301||New Mexico|
|60.||Fremont-Winema National Forest||Mount Thielsen||9182||Oregon|
|60.||Umpqua National Forest||Mount Thielsen||9182||Oregon|
|71.||Prescott National Forest||Mount Union||7979||Arizona|
|1.||Inyo National Forest||Mount Whitney||14,495||California|
|7.||San Juan National Forest||Mount Wilson||14,246||Colorado|
|72.||Tonto National Forest||Myrtle Point||7960||Arizona|
|110.||National Forests in Florida||Osceola National Forest High Point||195||Florida|
|92.||Daniel Boone National Forest||Pine Mountain-Harlan 2 Benchmark||2840||Kentucky|
|66.||Clearwater National Forest||Ranger Peak||8817||Idaho|
|94.||Ouachita National Forest||Rich Mountain||2681||Arkansas|
|82.||Cherokee National Forest||Roan High Knob||6285||North Carolina/Tennessee|
|57.||Lewis and Clark National Forest||Rocky Mountain||9392||Montana|
|44.||Eldorado National Forest||Round Top||10,381||California|
|50.||Wallowa-Whitman National Forest||Sacajawea Peak||9838||Oregon|
|78.||Six Rivers National Forest||Salmon Mountain||6956||California|
|32.||San Bernardino National Forest||San Gorgonio Mountain||11,499||California|
|59.||Lolo National Forest||Scapegoat Mountain||9202||Montana|
|56.||Nez Perce National Forest||She Devil||9400||Idaho|
|67.||Kootenai National Forest||Snowshoe Peak||8738||Montana|
|87.||Nebraska National Forest||Soldier Creek Wilderness High Point||4740||Nebraska|
|74.||Idaho Panhandle National Forest||South Selkirk Crest||7709||Idaho|
|45.||Deschutes National Forest||South Sister||10,358||Oregon|
|70.||Mendocino National Forest||South Yolla Bolly Mountain||8094||California|
|85.||Monongahela National Forest||Spruce Knob||4861||West Virginia|
|51.||Boise National Forest||Steel Mountain||9730||Idaho|
|63.||Malheur National Forest||Strawberry Mountain||9040||Oregon|
|46.||Bitterroot National Forest||Trapper Peak||10,157||Montana|
|17.||Santa Fe National Forest||Truchas Peak||13,102||New Mexico|
|4.||Grand Mesa-Uncompahgre-Gunnison National Forest||Uncompahgre Peak||14,309||Colorado|
|99.||Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest||Vilas County High Point||1900||Wisconsin|
|73.||Umatilla National Forest||Vinegar Hill Northeast||7926||Oregon|
|103.||Wayne National Forest||Wayne National Forest High Point||1320||Ohio|
|109.||Kisatchie National Forest||Webster Parish High Point||480||Louisiana|
|16.||Carson National Forest||Wheeler Peak||13,161||New Mexico|
|83.||White Mountain National Forest||White Mountain National Forest High Point||6142||New Hampshire|
|38.||Gila National Forest||Whitewater Baldy||10,895||New Mexico|
|106.||Shawnee National Forest||Williams Hill||1064||Illinois|
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National Forests and National Grasslands are publically-owned lands in the United States managed by the U.S. Forest Service, part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The 300,000 square miles of Forest Service land is managed for logging, grazing, habitat protection, and outdoor recreation. Sometimes confused with National Parks, National Forests are quite different—Forests are bigger, generally less popular, don’t charge entry fees, and allow managed resource extraction in addition to tourist activities.
There are about 155 named National Forests and 20 National Grasslands. However, this list of National Forest high points is based on a new reorganized list of 109 USFS-managed entities. It also only considers publicly-owned USFS land and no private or public inholdings.
Over the past couple decades the Forest Service has been streamlining and consolidating their operations, and the actual management of their lands is now done by 112 new “combined forests”. Essentially, the USFS saw no distinctions between National Forests and National Grasslands, and no reason to honor traditional National Forest boundaries, so they re-organized their holdings as they saw fit to best manage their land.
Some traditional National Forests survived the re-org intact (for example, the Gifford-Pinchot NF, the White Mountain NF), but others were combined, sometimes into entities with bureaucratic names (for example, “National Forests in Texas”, “Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit”). Most of the former National Grasslands were merged into these new combined National Forests. The old National Forest names may still appear on signs and maps, but organizationally they don’t really exist anymore.
The high point list shown here uses 110 of these new National Forest entities, including the one in Puerto Rico. The only 2 excluded are a new USFS unit entirely composed of former National Grasslands (the Dakota Prairie Grasslands) and the relatively new Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie, both of which never had any traditional National Forest land in them.
One advantage of using this new, smaller list of National Forest high points is that many uninspiring peaks in lowlands areas are no longer on the list. For example, the new “National Forests in Mississippi” entity used to be six forests (Holly Springs, Bienville, DeSoto, Delta, Tombigee, Homochitto). In this case, the USFS desire for organizational efficiency aligns nicely with the interests of peakbaggers who prefer “real” mountains.
National Forests tend to have extremely convoluted boundaries. Many of them have a “proclaimed boundary” that may be somewhat regular, but only portions of the land within the proclaimed boundary are actually owned by the USFS. Much of this private land is on the edges of National Forests, but there are also many private inholdings surrounded by public land. There are also cases where an important mountain summit (Mount Washington, NH and Mount Mitchell, NC, for example) are within inholdings that are State Parks and not USFS land. The government is engaged in a long-term effort to purchase inholdings from willing sellers, but this is a very slow process.
This list only shows highpoints located on public Forest Service land. Higher land located on private property within the proclaimed boundary is ignored. Please e-mail the webmaster if you see any errors where a high point on private land is listed.
Thanks to Roy Schweiker and David Olson, who did much original research on a preliminary list (see link below).
Links Preliminary National Forest High Points
Map Showing Location of Peaks
= Peak with Rank #1 on List;   = Other PeaksClick on a peak to see its name and a clickable link.
(Map only shows peaks ranked by clean prominence)
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