Explore Backpacks - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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backpacking
7 hours ago

Amazing hike! The boulder chain lakes are amazing and well worth the trip. Devils staircase is a little treacherous and I wouldn’t recommend it to people new to backpacking. Bring your camera and be prepared to take lots of photos.

Took twelve Boy Scouts up with their dads. Awesome hike.

Amazing hike.

Beautiful hike! Far from “lightly trafficked” though - got an early start and only saw folks that had backpacked up at the lake. Passed dozens and dozens of folks headed up on our way back down. Don’t forget dog leashes if you have them - leash laws enforced July 1-Labor Day Weekend. A bear crossed our path on the way up but it was more afraid of us and just took off.

Beautiful lake with blue and almost turquoise waters. Snowcapped mountains behind. Wildflowers in bloom. Couple snowy areas to cross, but they are easily passable and crampons were not needed. Perfect weather. Sunny with a light breeze. My GPS watch clocked at just under 10 miles from parking lot to sitting area at Sawtooth Lake & back. Took us 4.5 hours + 1 hour at the lake. Would definitely recommend!

Dispersed campsites on road up to trailhead (get there early - fill up quickly) & pay campground at the trailhead with trash dumpster & potable water.

hiking
4 days ago

Quick little hike with nice views and a uniquely colored little lake.

backpacking
4 days ago

Easy access to the trailhead. Trail was a little crowded, but not terrible. Trails were well maintained.

Mosquitoes during our trip were bad if there was not a strong breeze, but the water made the wild flowers amazing to view.

Views from Seneca lake on were absolute stunning. The basin was amazing. Island lake was the most crowded area, but if you try hard you can find a good campsite anywhere.

I imagine in the later part of summer the streams and lakes will be much drier which would make parts of the hike easier, but also would take a little bit away from the views.

Beautiful trail. The wildflower garden in the meadow as you cross Iron Creek before climbing up to Alpine Lake was the most beautiful and extensive that I have seen anywhere! Sawtooth Lake and Goat Lakes are the most scenic of the Sawtooth area. We backpacked on to Observation Peak (trail to the top) for fantastic panoramic Sawtooth views and photos.

hiking
6 days ago

A great evening hike when the sun is starting to go down. Beautiful wild flowers in July on the hillsides if your not in the pines lead to a green alpine lake.

backpacking
7 days ago

I did a modified version of this loop. Beware that the trail from Patterson Peak to Quiet Lake doesn’t exist - or at least I couldn’t find it. I went from quiet lake over the ridge to four lakes basin. Once again a very steep descent with no clear trail. Mosquitoes at all lakes are very intense and even with bug spray can get very tiresome. I would rate this trail as difficult (at least the first half).

Did this yesterday! Beautiful hike, has everything; creeks, waterfalls, meadows, forest and lakes of course. Pretty easy going until you pass the creeks, keep an eye out for the little trails between the switchbacks if you feel up to it, definitely speeds things up! Still pretty muddy and snowy at the top, made the going a little tough at times. Thankfully the way down is much faster and easier! Got some crazy blisters so dont forget bandaid's, bugspray and sunscreen (got pretty burnt too.)

Went two days ago. Best all-around hike ever. So great. So beautiful.

Mosquitos are as bad as advertised. Scenery is so out of this world that who cares about the bugs?

Did this in two nights with one campground above Island Lake. Snow, mud, and stream crossings were the biggest obstacle. As summer continues, the snow will melt, the mud will dry, the streams settle. Definitely doable. No need for traction.

Just watch out for post holing, snow is getting unstable in places.

The most difficult part is the last 5 miles back to the trailhead. And that is all mental.

Yes, fairly crowded for the backcountry, but the sort of people who do hikes like this seem like all right people to me.

Perfect this time of year. Beautiful everywhere!

JULY 6, 2018: got a late start that morning for the hike, it was already starting to get very warm out. the hike was ok, VERY CONFUSING at times (there are a lot of random paths). if you stay on track then you will be fine. i only went up to the first lake (Alpine Lake), which was beautiful! some of my friends continued to Sawtooth Lake, but got lost and said it was a struggle the rest of the way. they said the lake was amazing though.
definitely some uphill switchbacks for a ways, but decent.
BRING BUG SPRAY— THE MOSQUITOS ARE VICIOUS!

backpacking
11 days ago

Beautiful hike! We camped at Alpine Lake instead of Sawtooth Lake, and we’re glad we did. It was a pretty easy hike (great for trying to get used to the elevation). The lake was stunning and the sky was the bluest we’ve seen. The stars were unparalleled. We did see a deer, but no other wildlife. There was a little snow between Alpine Lake and Sawtooth Lake (6/2-6/4), but it was very easy to traverse. The bugs were what you should be expecting from an alpine lake - definitely bring bug spray. Highly recommend!

Nice hike with great views. Alpine lake and sawtooth lake were outstanding. It took us 2hrs up and 2hrs down. We didn’t stop for very long though because the mosquitoes were terrible.

Beautiful trail. We got up to snowy, slushy Sawtooth Lake June 14th.

Really the best. Just epic views on the top half. Lake is gorgeous. Totally inspiring. Bottom third a little boring but goes fast. Fair amount of snow on trail on July 1 but not a problem.

backpacking
19 days ago

6/27/18 There are only a few small patches of well packed snow to cross. Enjoy.

hiking
29 days ago

we hike this trail every year when on vacation at alturus lake. lots of switchbacks and a beautiful rest about 2.5 miles in. a nice little sandy area on the creek. have seen lots of wildlife and some amazing views!

Amazing, moderately trafficked trail! Will hike again! Super beautiful views!

on Redfish Lake Trail

hiking
1 month ago

Great trail conditions. Lots of variety. Great views at lots of locations

Hiked 6/13/18. Most of the snow has melted, except at the lake itself. Great trail, plenty of shade and not too steep. Beautiful area

Hiked on 5/19, lots of snow. AllTrails and a compass were helpful for trail finding. Fell in knee deep or further several places. Snowshoes or cross country skis are highly recommended. Great views and gorgeous lake (although it was still frozen/slush at this time).

on Titcomb Basin Trail

fishing
1 month ago

Even with all the crowds it’s worth going once. Great views and easy well marked trail. Wish this was a foot travel only area and no stock animals.

Hiked on 5/28. The trail is clearly marked until you pass the creek, where you lose the trail almost completely. You need to navigate to the lake by yourself from that point on. AllTrails and GPS were very helpful in getting us to the lake!! Also, very snowy and wet, at least 3 feet+ of snow. Extremely beautiful and worth the trek, however would probably wait a month or two (or just wear snow shoes!!)

backpacking
1 month ago

Hiked it a on May 21. Good trail but noticed a lot of down trees and branches covering the trail. Also had tough time cause there was still a ton of snow once you pass creek. Made also difficult to walk or follow the trail without snow shoes. Overall good hike, probably better to do in a couple months.

Still, a lot of snow on the trail as others have stated. Whether you use boots with or without gaters, you will need about 12" of protection to keep your feet dry. I highly recommend gaters!

We followed Trail 640 to the valley Iron Creek crossing. Steadily increasing snow as you make your way up the trail. With some strategic log placement, we were able to make it across with relatively dry feet. From that point on, you will be walking on about 3ft of snow (mostly solid pack). It is absolutely beautiful in the valley and well worth it to cross the creek.

After the creek, despite using 2 different offline GPS trail maps, we were unable to find the trail again. We made our way to the next ridgeline, ate lunch, and decided to turn back.

An amazing hike with the right gear and highly recommended.

Best trip I’ve ever done.

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