Explore the most popular camping trails near Improvement District No. 9 with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

backpacking
22 days ago

I would recommend crampons and poles, be mindful of avalanches this time of the year as well. Expect to be breaking trail if you do the whole loop. View from Skoki Mountain is definitely worth the effort.

Completed July 2017, counter-clockwise. Amazing hike all around, Jonas Shoulder rewards with some pretty incredible views.

1 month ago

I was with Shahram and confirm it can be done in one day though little bit difficult. One of the best hikes I've ever done and will do in the future.
Lots of water on the trail can be used if having either filter or pills.
There are few campsites for those who want to enjoy more.
On the way back I recommend to follow the route Shahram recorded as the meadow was beautiful and quite. My phone crashed so I could not complete my recordings.

Did a 3 day , 2 night hike last week , was awesome ! Had some cold temps and bit windy but anything can be expected out there . Camped first night at hidden lake camp and then Merlin meadows the next . Great scenery and way too many postcard pics to be taken out there . Absolutely beautiful part of the world

The start is very casual and actually quite flat with a very gradual ascend into a beautiful valley. Mostly hiking through a forest, by a creek and through a campground at the 5k mark. At the 8 -10 k mark you start to get above the tree line and the views are incredible. Once you climb over the saddle at the top of the pass this is a definite wow moment. We didn’t descend completely into fish lake as there was no reason to, but had lunch above the ridge overlooking fish lake. I would rate this as moderate only due to the length. One gorgeous hike.

backpacking
2 months ago

Awesome hike! The hike from the parking lot to the meadows is quite steep, but once you reach the meadows i'ts a pretty easy hike, with superior views. Don't forget to cross the stream halfway, there are three stone arrow markers on the trail, but I still missed them. Once you get to the overlook it will look like you're almost there. From there it's still quite a hike trough the forest to get to the lake.

I camped at the lake for one night, but should really have stayed for two nights. There is a narrow trail that you can take around the lake, which will get you to a spring and a cave. Be sure to go for a swim too!

We did the full loop plus hiking to Merlin lake in about 13 hours and headed out the same day. A very long day with variety of landscapes from dense woods, gorgeous creeks, wide open meadow, water falls and five spectacular lakes and last but not least, the historic Skoki lodge, located deep in the isolated Skoki valley. Completing this full loop in a single day will definitely need a good level of body strength however, the beauty of the area makes you forget about your tiredness. Be prepared for rapid weather change at any time. Overall this was a very pleasant hike and I highly recommend it at least once.

backpacking
3 months ago

The Skoki loop is truly breathtaking and absolutely worth the somewhat demoralizing fire road slog in. Bugs are definitely a hassle - a bug jacket was a well used luxury item for me. We stayed at Baker Lake our first night, then at Merlin Meadows for the second. One thing we noticed is that there are apparently two ways through Deception Pass. We took the heavily signed route, but the one highlighted in this app is just west of the main trail and is a bit tougher to find. It is marked by some stone cairns about midway along Ptarmigan Lake for those that want to try it. We very much enjoyed the main route, which is well signed, just past the cairn-marked trail. The signed trail also seems the safer more established way, but as we did not take the highlighted route along the two lakes, I cannot speak to that particular trail.

The AllTrails app came in handy multiple times as there are many forks in the trails that lead elsewhere and are sometimes not well signed. Using my downloaded maps helped me to avoid some potential inconvenient strays from the route I intended.

Overall, we enjoyed Skoki thoroughly, with the exception of those hikers that feel it appropriate to blast their music in the backcountry, go off trail when they should not be, and decide it is ok to cook in their campsite and dump food waste in the camping area. Those inconsiderate humans were the worst part of the trip and are unfortunate constants in every backcountry experience - it would be lovely if everyone out there looked after each other and the environment so as to uplift the experience for all. Sadly that is often not the case out there. A little mindfulness of others and nature would go a long way.

hiking
3 months ago

Completed this trail this weekend. Garmin measured it at just over 62km. trail head to south pass is well travelled but there is a split after the pass that doesn't follow this map. I took the trail to the right and it cuts off into the forest where the trail disappears. About 6-8 km have either been washed out or cut off by dead fall and over grown towards Molar Campground.Ran into 2 grizzlies just past the South pass in the woods. Only way to reach the campsite is across the river which was about knee high this weekend, but if you walk a bit down its lower. Towards Fish lakes the first 2-3 km are washed out or in marsh type areas so bring your gaiters

Amazing! Skoki Lodge is very well maintained. I really liked Packers Pass. Definitely worth it to wear all your camping gear with you, the elevation gain is not that bad. Nights could be cold!

backpacking
3 months ago

First things first - did it solo in 3 days, clockwise, with a total distance closer to 54km. Stayed at Fish Lakes night one, Molar Creek night 2.

Day 1 and 3 were utterly beautiful - I’d have to say that the hike to Fish Lakes is one of my favourite single day outings in the parks. The setting of the campsite at the lake itself is gorgeous. Day 2 is dull, and has some pretty tedious portions. The Pipestone river valley, while pretty, has some sections (~4km) that are so overgrown with brush that you just have to bobsled down the deep tracks in the trail. Once to turn west into the Molar Creek valley, prepare to lose the trail in the creek bed. There’s a lot of water and streams crisscrossing the valley floor, and the entire area is swampy and wet until you reach the Molar Creek campsite. The campsite itself is tucked away on the west side of the creek, requiring you to cross. Line up the pink flagging tape and you’ll be able to spot the campsite sign amongst the trees. Day 3 has some areas where the trail is submerged, but it’s pretty easily navigable. Once you start your climb, the trip over the pass is gorgeous all the way back to your car.

All in all, pretty solid loop. Lots of solitude along the Pipestone/Molar Creek area, and the trail loses a star for some really boggy and swampy areas that are hard to navigate. Otherwise a beautiful area in the parks with some incredible alpine lakes, meadows, and valleys.

backpacking
3 months ago

Did a 3 day backpacking trip using Baker Lake as our campsite. Overall the hike was great and we really enjoyed the scenery and difficulty level. Our day hike consisted of doing the skoki loop and it was fantastic, walking through the valleys and deception pass was incredible. Loved looking over Skoki Lakes. The ONLY thing that made this hike less enjoyable was the swarms of mosquitoes. They really put a damper on the trip borderline unbearable.

Did a 3 day backpack here last year and it was amazing. Probably the best multi day I’ve done thus far. Very tough. Very rewarding.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

The hike is stunning with beautiful views despite a rain-filled second day that led us to hike from Baker Lake towards Skoki Lodge and then back to the parking lot all in one day. The only downside is that we lost our GPS Rhino radio along the trail somewhere between Deception Pass and the Fish Creek parking lot. If anyone finds it please comment as we'd really like it back. Many thanks in advance!

hiking
Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Beautiful route with steep mountain passes, pretty alpine meadows, glaciers & crystal clear lakes. We hiked the loop over two days in a clockwise direction, camping overnight at Merlin Meadows; 16km on day one, 21km on day two. Would definitely recommend!

backpacking
Saturday, August 19, 2017

Hiked the trail with my 8 year old son. Spent first night at Baker Lake and second night at Merlin Meadows. All around great experience, lots of wildflowers, amazing alpine valleys and lakes. Challenging but doable for most.

Tuesday, July 04, 2017

Amazing views, alpine lakes, snow capped peaks. Loved the Skoki Loop and little side trip to Skoki Lakes (Zigadenus and Myostosis). We stayed two nights at Baker Lake and day hiked the loop. Only downside to the trail is the first 4km, which are on a gravel access road... otherwise a fantastic trail and backpacking circuit!

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
3 months ago

backpacking
3 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

camping
4 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

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