Explore the most popular Bird Watching trails in Kaniksu National Forest with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

backpacking
5 days ago

Backpacked into Harrison Lake on Sunday November 10th 2019 with a couple buddies. We were lucky to have good weather with minimal winds, but boy was it chilly. Micro spikes would have been nice for the entire hike up and down, and snowshoes would have been nice for once we got to the lake. The snow was deep, and in some parts the drifts were four feet deep. The lake is 90% frozen over now, and we had to walk out 40 feet to chip down into the ice to find drinking water. The ice was probably 8-10 inches thick! Overall an awesome overnighter in the snow.

nice road up to the trail head! little bit of snow and ice on the trail, would love to come back up to see it in the summer! beautiful 360 view at the top!

Nice walk with the ladies!

hiking
icy
snow
24 days ago

We hiked this trail yeaterday,beautiful end of Fall hike! The road to the trailhead was in excellent condition( I drove my 2002 Honda Accord) but pretty icy,snow-covered the last 2 miles before the sharp R. turn at the end.I have all season tires on though and had no trouble...I agree with reviewer Karin Patzke on the mileage of the trail, it looks as if the Forest Service road has been closed off since this original report thus making the TH parking a 1/2 mile sooner than is stated on All Trails"Directions". It's a little bit unclear as to where the Queen Mountain trail continues after the Lake but simply follow the trail to the left, (to the right is a camping area) and bear R at the junction in about a mile - give or take - you'll be at the base of Queen Mountain in ~10 minutes. We just walked up the side of it 'till we got the view we were looking for!! The Lake was iced over and no bugs! :)

hiking
snow
1 month ago

hiked this trail at the beginning of October, in the snow. Enjoyed it very much. Beautiful lake with snow at the shore. No bugs ;).

hiking
1 month ago

Nice hike with a lot of switchback. Great View of Lake. Since it was Friday morning 11am there was only 1 Hiker. Peaceful, quiet, pure beautiful nature.

Great little trail with some nice cedars!

hiking
snow
1 month ago

The trail was covered in snow up to 18” in some areas. Micro spikes would have been helpful. Regardless, the lake is beautiful and scenic. Looking forward to doing this again maybe when there’s no snow.

hiking
1 month ago

Made the trek to Harrison Lake today with the family. Beautiful views along the trail and well marked. Lake was stunning and a must see for anyone. Small fish in the lake and fun to catch. Plan for the weather and your experience will be a wonderful memory. :)

hiking
rocky
2 months ago

I highly recommend this trail. My 4, 6 and 10 year old kids did complete the hike with us. Steep and rocky in some areas towards the top. The lake is gorgeous!

backpacking
2 months ago

Beautiful hike! We backpacked in on Saturday morning & stayed the night at the lake. There are several nice spots to put tents and the bear proof container that’s there was great to use so we didn’t have to hassle with hanging our food. Great place to bring a hammock! The fish were jumping like crazy but we didn’t bring poles. Bugs were very minimal. Saw fresh bear scat on the trail heading up but never actually saw any bears. If you are looking for a short hike into a mountain lake that’s fairly easy I would recommend this hike! Throw in a small inflatable swim ring & float the lake! ⛰♥️

hiking
2 months ago

Great trail not to difficult. The trail is well maintained, a little rocky but nothing to strenuous. The road up to the trail is well groomed; can easily take a car up and be fine. Gorgeous day, I saw a couple people camping but didn’t pass anyone on the trail. Would definitely recommend this trail.

hiking
2 months ago

Hiked over Labor Day weekend and found the weather to be perfect. The trail is mostly shaded, nicely cleared path, hardly any bugs, a moderate challenge, and minimal traffic. Passed a few bikers and hikers. Beautiful view and rest area at the lookout. Will definitely be back!

hiking
2 months ago

We did a day trip on Labor Day. Nice hike on well maintaned trail. The lake itself is stunning. We thought this was a moderately easy hike. 1 hour hike to the lake at steady pace. Saw lots of families. Somewhat limited parking.

hiking
2 months ago

First part of the hike has switch backs, but they were easy to convey. It was heavily wooded and had a smooth walking path. There were no bugs. The view from the top was magnificent and worth the hike.

We tried making a right out to the overlook but after 15 min we popped out on a ski trail & weren’t sure if we should go left or right, so we headed back to the main loop.

hiking
2 months ago

Worth the hike! Next time I will be camping for sure!

hiking
rocky
2 months ago

Finally got the opportunity to take this hike with my husband and our Deerhead Chihuahua, Mr. Bentley! We made it up and back on this beautiful afternoon today. A bit rocky in areas but not bad at all. Lake is around 6,400 feet and we were glad we brought light jackets as the wind picked up and was cool coming off the lake. Hiked around towards the North side of the lake for even better pics of peaks and lake. We'll definitely be back this Fall for a late season hike! May even adventure up higher!

hiking
2 months ago

Good hike. The lookout spots are ok, I enjoyed the trail scenery more. There are two lookout spots. The trail continues a little after them, but just goes up to a road with no views. Well maintained trail and no bugs in late August.

backpacking
3 months ago

Great hike with rewarding views. The first 2 miles are definitely doable uphill the entire way with a few flats, and the last .5 mile is a rocky scramble to the top. Absolutely gorgeous hike with great spots to camp around the lake.

hiking
3 months ago

Great little trail. There were quite a few people, which I prefer when hiking in bear country. Definitely worth the drive.

hiking
3 months ago

Great moderate hike to a beautiful lake! The trail to Harrison Lake is in great shape and easy to follow. The trail really only gets steep near the lake. The lake itself is absolutely stunning! Lots of campsites around the lake. We went on a Sunday so there were still a few folks camping. The road to the trailhead is just fine as my little Focus made it just fine!

hiking
3 months ago

Beautiful lake and surrounding mountains. great view of the valley in. well marked and hiked trail

hiking
3 months ago

I did this on a Sunday morning and when I got to the TH there were several vehicles there. Turns out that Harrison Lake is a very popular camping spot probably because even cars can make it to the trailhead unlike many other hikes in Idaho. The trail was in excellent shape and I didn't think it was too hard except for near the end when steepness increased while walking on granite slabs. There are many camp sites at the lake and also a maze of paths. I had trouble finding the trail out when I was done exploring. I did go part way up towards Harrison Peak which is hook-like but turned around after finding the going a little bit risky. I was alone and no cell service there so I took no chances. The scenery is awesome even along various parts of the trail. I noticed a bear resistant container when I got to the lake but no pit toilet which could be concerning seeing how many campers use that area. One other thing that'd be helpful are cairns along the stretches of trail that are on solid rock. Overall a very nice and not too difficult hike.

hiking
3 months ago

Nice forest views, well maintained trail with a great lake view at the top. Full shade!

hiking
3 months ago

Loved this lake! Amazing view. Hiked in with a group of scouts and had a great time. Did a scramble up above the lake to the “castle” and had unreal views of the surrounding valleys all the way to Priest Lake.

I recommend this hike if you are in shape for elevations. People who may not be used to the elevation; such as someone who lives at sea level, may find it tough. A steep start that has one or two level spots. Most of the trail it UP, and I mean UP! I checked my elevation one time before hitting the granite faces and it was around 5600 el. I forgot to check at the lake but if I had to make a guess, maybe about 6000. There are some amazing views here. Be safe and take bear spray or a weapon. This is in Grizzly country and you will see a sign declaring that fact on your way up. Most of the groups I encountered had one or two weapons (open carry), I carried , with permit, concealed.

Hike was 7 miles total, but we went beyond the lookout. It took 3 hours to complete; however, we stopped to pick huckleberries for a while. The trail is well maintained, with only a couple of very minor sections with loose and embedded rocks, but not at all dangerous. Easy to navigate. It was moderately busy (roughy 15 others) including a few mountain bikers and runners. The views were gorgeous. NOT A SINGLE MOSQUITO! Only a couple of flies. Pay attention for obscure tree roots that will be potential tripping hazards if you are not paying attention. This trail was easy to navigate. Steeper in the beginning, with lots of switchbacks, but not difficult or technical. Only 2 trees (blowdowns) to overcome, but doable for the agile. Overall good hike. Definitely a good workout. We live locally, so we will return.

camping
bugs
muddy
4 months ago

Great Hike up, started to hail when we approached the trailhead. Once it stopped we hiked in and only had to avoid a few muddy areas. The hike was pretty easy for a 2K elevation change, only a few difficult parts. The mosquitoes were pretty bad, and it was really cold at night, did not come prepared for that. The lake was beautiful, the area had about 3 good campsites around the big lake, didn't explore the small lake much, would definitely return!

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