My wife, Linda, and I managed to up our state high point count to 48 in 2009. A very good year for us having summitted Rainier, Hood, and Granite all on our first try. Our Gannett attempt was thwarted when the outfitter we hired failed to show up with a pack horse. It was hunting season and there were none available. The outfitter tried to contact us but we were already at the trailhead. He apologized and felt bad. Only Gannett and Denali left. I think we would be satisfied to be 49ers forever. Wish us luck in 2010.
I met the local outfitter Clayton Voss during my Gannett Peak trip this past summer, and he was able to help out my injured climbing partner. Of course, we were "fortunate" that my partner's injury fit into Clayton Voss' strict schedule so that he could be helped out of the wilderness, but aid is aid. We were impressed with him and his business.
Bald Mountain Outfitters, located off a Forest Service road just before the Elkhardt Park Trailhead. If we go in from Dubois we will take your suggestion and contact Clayton Voss. We have heard of him.
It's 10 miles further (5 miles each way), but it seemed like a far less technical hike, especially on summit day. When we looked over at the Bonney Pass route on summit day, we were SOOO thankful for the route we had chosen. The eastern approach is also quite scenic with multiple lakes, and surrounding mountains.
Clayton Voss has a wide assortment of knowledge of the area. He's worth contacting for advice, regardless of which route you take.
Well, we did it! My wife and I summitted Gannett Peak from the Pindale Elkhart Park approach on August 27th, 2010. This was our 49th and most likely last highpoint. We are 49ers forever. It was fantastic and needless to say a very hard and challenging climb for us. My wife, Linda is 57, and I am 62 years old. We trained hard and were glad we did.