Explore the most popular birding trails in Sawtooth Wilderness with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

One of my all time favorite places in the Sawtooths. This hike is tough and steep but with amazing and rewarding views. The trail is not the easiest to find or follow, it is not marked. Head across the river at flat rock junction (enjoy some time sliding down the rocks here too) before finding the trail to the north.

We read a lot of reviews and guides for this hike before leaving because everything was so conflicting. The last mile of the hike is definitely the most difficult part. There's a good section of steep gravel leading up to the first waterfall overlook. When you get to the rock wall on your right if you continue walking the base of the wall you will find the more staircase type section that is easier to go up, and that will be the start of the steepest part of the hike. Once you get to the waterfall overlook it is easy to miss the easier trail leading through the woods, so on the way up we went through the rock field. You can definitely avoid this by trying to stay as far to the left following up the waterfall and then you will find a beaver dam to cross above the falls. In that section there are a few times that it will look like the trail has ended but it hasn't, just keep pushing along and there are multiple different ways through the trees. Once you get to the falls you are pretty close so if you've made it that far, keep pushing on because it's definitely worth making that last little climb.

We went on a weekend and backpacked in, there were definitely a good amount of people camping up there so it was a bit "crowded" but mainly because there are only about 5-7 different spots along the lake to set up camp. We tried following the path along the lake to get our own private area but encountered others along the way that said they didn't see anywhere to set up down on the SE corner of the lake. By that time our packs were heavy so we headed back to the main area and grabbed a spot on higher ground which was still really great.

A few people were fishing and we saw some small trout in the lake. We got in for a swim and some guys were jumping off one of the higher rock areas but the water was quite cold as to be expected.

Great get away, my little corgi like dog made the hike and loved it, but he is like a little mountain goat. There were a couple areas on the trail up at the top, following the lake where we had to pass him because his short little legs couldn't make the jump, but the rest of the way up he made it up on his own. I was a little wary of bringing him because of some things that I read, but he is spry and good at climbing so he did well. Bigger dogs that love hiking should do just fine, and little dogs that love hiking might need a hand here and there but can make it as long as they are tough.

Loved this hike. Done it a couple times now, always love to see God’s creations! :)

Excellent family hike with my 2 year old strapped to my back. Great views at the turn back point and all along the way.

crews are working on the trails at this time...the loop was fun and the lakes are beautiful

Went last weekend. Served its purpose. My 13yo sons first loaded overnight trip. Lots of rocks, horse poop and dust. Trail is well marked and easy to follow. There is a lot of traffic. Get there early and get a spot. Fishing is way better on the back side of the lake. We had no bug problems as the wind was blowing. If not take 100% deet. Good experience

hiking
10 days ago

This is actually 4.2 miles and is a lot more hilly than I read in previous posts. I went with children ages 10, 8, and 5...and they all did it, but were winded at times.

It’s a beautiful hike and offers many spectacular views. Could not believe how gorgeous some of the vista views were and when you come up on the Titus lake... it’s very much a sight for tired eyes!

Will definitely do again next year!

Stunning!! Like being in a Nat Geo pic! Beautiful every step of the climb. Lake is awesome. Couple times a day you can hear the thunder-like rumble as snow avalanches into lake.

Caution: last half mile is steep. trail is unmarked (very hard to follow) and has overgrowth. Be careful. Taking your time. Wait and follow other to follow easiest path forward.

tough hike with the 50lb backpack!

12 days ago

Brought my 11 and 6 year old. Fun trail, they had a good time.

My husband and I hiked up to this Lake a week ago, we backpacked in and spent the night it was our first trip overnight and it was well worth it. The last mile of this hike is tough but they hike is so well worth it. The fishing was great at about 7 at night

backpacking
19 days ago

This hike was SO beautiful but it was pretty tough!
It is a steady incline for about two miles. The last mile/mile and a half is a CLIMB!!! Make sure you watch the trails and record your hike. It’s hard to find your way back.

Worth it!!

hiking
19 days ago

Great ups and downs! Nice lake!

I am not going to rewrite the entire route directions, but we were given some hints from fellow hikers that were AWESOME helps:
1) Granite wall - there is easier access to start your climb into the scree field - still a granite wall but with "Steps" that make an easier climb. Once you are at the spot just at/before the falls where you see the big granite wall to your right - keep walking straight and to the right as the trail bends around the granite wall. Where the granite butts up against the scree field you will see some natural formed steps that make it easier to climb up the wall into the scree field.
2) YOU DO NOT NEED TO CROSS THE BOULDER FIELD TO GET TO THE LAKE!! There is a shorter/easier route. At the top of the scree field - you'll be above the top of the falls just entering the boulder field. Look to your left for the beaver dam that is above the falls in shallow/calm water. That beaver dam is where you will cross on the LEFT side of the water/creek. Once you spot the beaver dam, you will easily see the trail the leads from where you are standing through a wooded area to that beaver dam. Once you cross the beaver dam it's a short easy hike to the lake (I posted a picture of this)
3) The All Trails map/location indicator was spot on - there are a couple places in the scree field where we used the indicator to make sure we were still on trail. It winds around a bit in there - so the location indicator was a good confidence marker.

Amazing trail. I started out early around 8:30 so there was no wait for a boat and it was quite chilly to start (around 50 degrees). Love the boat ride to and from. Very moderate trail with a steady set of switchbacks that lead to the lake. I wasn’t paying attention and walked past it so keep a lookout to the left after the trail levels out again. The lake is turquoise blue and refreshing for a swim. Enjoy!

Beautiful trail. Difficult climb at the end but worth the effort! Lake is spectacular!

hiking
23 days ago

even though only 1.74 miles each way, the trail is not an easy hike, there are several steep up and downs and then a loose downhill without shade (due to all the large whitebark pine trees have died) to the small lake....no shade on the downhill to lake segment and no shade at the lake so if it is a hot day you will be in full sun going back up that last segment. this is a popular trail close to Ketchum and you will have lots of company at the TH and on the trail. this is a dry hike until the lake and only one small seepage area right at the beginning for dog water...so be warned and bring extra water for you pup.

I couldn't find the lake made it to a dead end with no option to climb over

26 days ago

Loose soil, step climbs, and feels like it’s six miles to the lake. Not good for all skill levels.

This was a fantastic hike. We started on trail at 9am and had nice cool morning first three miles.

The last mile was brutal because we followed a path down under the falls, then had to hike all the way back up over the falls. That last mile, as many have stated, is difficult. Especially with our puppy and two small girls. Lots of gravel and just hoping your headed the right way.

The lake is extremely pretty. Clear blue water with ice up on the rim. Took a quick and cold dip into it. We only went to lake but heard many stories of others going beyond to the peaks.

We probably saw a total of three groups the whole hike. With maybe a total of 10 people at the whole lake.

Make like a goat and scramble the last few hundred yards. Intense! The reward is worth it.

Great hike in. Lake is gorgeous. The last section is climbing thru boulders along the falls. Well worth it.

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

hiking
1 month ago

Went on 07/12/2018 and it was a great hike right next to Redfish Lake. Go for a hike and cool off at the lake afterwards. Wonderful views check out my posted pictures to see. Highly recommended

hiking
1 month ago

This is a great hike for grandparents and little ones. It is pretty flat and easy. Gorgeous wildflowers and the meadow/marsh at the end was perfect for soaking feet and taking in great views of the mountains.

1 month ago

Stayed 4 days last week. Nice hike in and great views at the lake. Bugs were very bad at night so bring some spray. Pass to Payette Peak was still covered in snow. Hike to the 4 lakes beyond Imogene and there were great. Overall a wonderful place to camp.

hiking
1 month ago

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

hiking
1 month 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.

The first mile in by the side of the creek was very pretty. Not as many wildflowers as we had seen elsewhere. The next 3 miles to the Wilderness registration is fairly flat hiking through trees with mountain glimpses but not big views. After the registration site it is just short of 2 miles to the lake and after hiking through trees for 2 hours the whole view opens out. Spent an hour at the lake taking photos and a picnic. This was a Saturday so quite busy...many backpackers coming out having hiked up to Imogene Lake. Overall a really nice day hike.

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