Mallard Peak Lookout was one of the 1929 prototypes from which the successful L-4 cab evolved (thousands were later produced in prefab kits suitable for delivery by mule packstrings). It was built by a ranger and his crew on the old Pole Mountain Ranger District of the St. Joe National Forest (both names are now gone and merged into adjacent units). Located on the boundary between the Clearwater and Idaho Panhandle National Forests within a proposed wilderness, Mallard Peak was last staffed in 1956. In 1981 Ray Kresek and Don Mathis completed the initial stabilization of the structure. Since 1992 the Inland Empire Llama Association has provided annual maintenance.
Restoration information from Stephan E. Matz, Heritage Manager of Idaho Panhandle NF: "Thanks to Richard Fuller, the Grubham family (Tim, Carrie, Kyle, Britta, Cammie and Madison), Gary Weber, Destry Scheel, Chuck Mark and a generous donation of paint and supplies from the FFLA we got quite a bit of work accomplished this last weekend at Mallard Peak Lookout, including: All shutters are in place (the two gabled ends have working shutters, while the two sides are nailed or screwed in place); All siding, most of the trim and the two south end window shutters and the door shutter are painted white (we did not paint shutters that will be replaced); Cans were flattened and placed over woodpecker holes on the south end and painted white; Gary put most of the lightening protection system back together (we need new clamps on the southeast corner); etached southeast guy wire (the consensus was that the large flat boulder the guy is attached to may be sliding slightly down hill causing the corner to pull away); The corner was pulled back in line and since there wasn't enough wood to successfully nail to (the sill over the door had been ripped to provide sufficient room for installation of the new door) Tim nailed a length of wood into the space above the door and screwed a galvanized hinge across the corner to hold it temporarily in place; and Tim used his fall arrest equipment to do minor repairs to the roof and the stove chimney pipe. I took extensive notes and photos of the lookout and collected samples of hinges and materials for next year's project. I left the new interpretive notebook and took all but the most recent lookout logs so that they can be copied and put on the web this winter. I will take them back up next trip. I will pull together some additional plans for restoration in the near future and send them out to everyone. We are also working on a Mallard Web Page that should be ready in the next week or two. I will let everyone know when it is done. Thanks again for everyone's help and especially to Richard for his enthusiasm, donation of materials and tools and efforts in keeping the project moving forward, to Tim for his expertise, donation of materials and family who painted the majority of the lookout, and Gary Weber for his expertise and FFLA connections and supplies donation. We certainly can not forget Don Mathis and Ray Kresek for their early efforts at restoration, moral support, information about the lookout and Ray's offer of materials for this year's work. Destry Scheel made sure our temporary shutters were helicoptered in. I also appreciate that Chuck Mark, the District Ranger, thought enough of the project to come up on his weekend off to help out and his offer of support for next year's work."
Mallard Peak restored west side 8/30/08
Mallard Peak restored north side 8/31/08
Mallard Peak south and east sides 8/31/08
Certificate awarded for Mallard Peak restoration
Photo courtesy of Jesse Haynes