Explore the most popular dogs on leash 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.

3 days ago

I went with my two Labs on an overnight. The weather was dry with temps in the upper 80's. The trail is an old road for the first 3 miles or so. The last section is a trail with switchbacks to the lake. There was plenty of water on this trip between springs, wet meadows and creeks. Perfect for dogs on a hot day. Just before the trail to the lake is an old mine site and a gorgeous waterfall. We reached the lake in late afternoon. The lake is a long one with steep walls of rock surrounding it. There is a campground at the foot of the lake that is capable of supporting 4 - 5 tents. It is the only campsite on the lake. We set up our tent and had a nice leisurely evening. The next morning we took a trip around to the head of the lake on the west side. This entails crossing the creek. I did not find it until our return but if you follow the creek down a little way there is a log jam so you can cross with dry feet. The social trail goes to the head of the lake and through St. Paul pass to St. Paul lake to the North. We did not go all the way to the pass but the trail is navigable. The day was hot enough that I wanted to get down the hot switchbacks before temps really ramped up for the day. I saw a mountain goat, and some dippers at the lake. There were quite a few fish jumping in the water. This would make a very good day hike. It was a fun trip. I'd do it again.

Amazing hike with breathtaking views! Trail is steep and hard on the knees when going down, wish I had grabbed my poles. Trail is in great shape and just a touch of snow still left in the higher elevation. The road into the trail is quite nice, you don't a high clearance vehicle to get there.

Amazing hike. Very steep switchbacks and going back down will kill your knees, but the view is so worth it. Saw a lot of wildlife: moose, grouse, elk, and of course mountain goats.

it was an amazing hike with a lovely trail. We saw some mountain goats and a grouse. The view along the climb is wonderful. you will not be disappointed. I'm 30 years old, in a moderate shape and I climbed this peak with my son who is 4 years old, it wasn't a difficult climb but a long way. We walked 3 hours to go to the top. Very good trail to see wild animals, amazing view on the Pend Oreille lake, wild flowers and enjoy a view at the top on the mountains all around you !

It’s a quite difficult hike, be prepared with LOTS of water on a hot day. Once you get to the tip top.. worth every second!!!!!! ❤️ Best views in Idaho that I’ve seen in quite some time.

If you have thought about doing this hike, and then thought about it some more, then read the reviews and continued to think, “Can I do this hike? Will it be too hard?!” The answer is, DO THIS HIKE! It is a difficult hike, but worth every step! My husband (in really good shape) myself (a walker but not in that good of shape) and my 9 year old (how hard is it to get 70 pounds up a hill?!) did the hike on 7.7.18. It took us about 5 hours round trip with a few breaks along the way. When we reached the top, there were a dozen or so goats. AMAZING! Don’t think another second about this hike. You will be so happy you did this! Happy hiking!

on Scotchman Peak Trail

13 days ago

This hike was absolutely gorgeous and strenuous! We even saw two different groups of goats on the trail!

what a gorgeous hike! even saw a mountain goat to boot!

14 days ago

This trail is listed as difficult for a reason. The 4+ miles of uphill are quite a challenge for anyone. Beautiful scenery around every corner and goats everywhere around the top. Heed the Rangers advice and don't pet them, let them lick you or let them eat your food or they will be destroyed for becoming aggressive. Good shoes are advised but I made it fine in my old Brooks running shoes. Bring lots of water as there are no water sources. There are bathrooms at the base which are nice to have. The path down is much easier on the lungs and heart but brutal on the knees and I'm used to running long distances so take breaks if needed. It was the hardest hike I've ever done but totally worth it at the top. Don't trust the online driving directions, just look for trail #65 signs on road. Some other signs have been knocked down. Happy hiking!

on Goat Mountain Trail

18 days ago

Hiked this trail mid April 2018. Would have given it a 5, but the blizzard that set in as we reached the top precluded any views at all- visibility was only about 5 feet in front of you. Was able to hike about halfway up in Hiking shoes- but required snowshoes the rest of the way. A great trail to know what you’re made of. Because of all the snow- there was no trail so we hiked the ridge line meaning it was more like 9 Miles out and back and each step was pretty grueling. Sleet started falling on the way down- stinging my face- that’s a first on a hike! But the views on the way up - especially of the Clark Fork river were beautiful.

This hike is very doable with all the switch backs and taking your time. Coming down if you have any knee issues prepare for that (taping braces wraps). No water on this hike. I drank 2 liters on cool day. Last year drank over 4 liters on a hot day. Nice parking and porta potty at the bottom. Your allowed to camp there. Leave no trace. Unless a big rain the creek there is usually dry in summer. Trail well maintained. Sometimes during the week and most weekends there are goat Ambassadors somewhere along the trail to help with education and making sure the goats are safe and don’t become an issue that has to be taken care of. Most of them (not all) have extra water, limited first aide stuff for blisters, and maps. Phone service most of the way. It’s a fabulous hike. Worth every grueling step.

amazing day - blue sky non-stop! A little more snow than last summer!Cross a stream in parking lot, good trail for first mile plus- then snow- hiked up thru it in shorts and boots, made it halfway. Ate lunch in snow - headed down. snow soft but doable.Will hit again in June.

Fantastic hike, wish the fog would’ve lifted but still great accomplishment. Ended up completing the whole thing in 3:27 with eating at the top. Just like everyone else says it is quite a workout.

27 days ago

Three of us all 70, but in excellent shape hiked the trail. We found it to be an excellent workout and we made to the summit without much difficulty.
Highlight of the walk was the mountain goats at the summit.

As others have said, this trail is a workout. I'm 37 and in pretty good hiking shape and I found it difficult but I was also pushing my pace quite a bit. However, I met a couple of ladies in their mid 70s who were approaching the summit, so with determination and pacing, anyone can do this. There is still heavy snow on the upper 1/4 of the trail. It won't likely be gone until August. But I was easily able to follow the footprints over the snow to stay on course. The views are spectacular on a clear day. Some of the best you can find around here. Absolutely worth the effort.

1 month ago

May 31st:

Seven of us made it about 3/4 the way up before - tired and wreaking of fat guy - four of our weaker men called it quits and prematurely cracked victory beers. We remaining three trekked the last quarter, where snow still lie, until we valiantly conquered the beast. We may have lost the trail a time or two through the remains of winter, but at the peak, eight wise mountain goats helped to celebrate our accomplishment.

We later found the four weak men wreaking of fat guy, and now alcohol, at a local pub. We only wonder why they couldn't make it.

Strenuous with beautiful view as your reward. I’m in my early 30s and in moderate shape, and it was a challenge during the initial switchbacks and a little painful on my knees in the way down. Pack some food and water and enjoy your day on this trail!

1 month ago

Very beautiful trail and great scenic views! walking to the lake is worth it because of the views, not so much the lake. I recommend bringing extra shoes!

1 month ago

Great hike but a little early on day 2 of June. There was 5 creek crossings and just one I had to remove the boots and socks being around knee deep in freezing run off :) glad I brought my poles. Nice single trek trail with sun and shade couple of Cedar Groves blow downs, thorns, brush, snow just about everything you would want in a good hike and some great scenery. In places on the last leg before the lake the snow is still a few feet deep and just a little clearing at the lake ( beginning of the creek ) No other people it was great!

1 month ago

A few of us hiked up here last Thursday, 5/24. The bottom 3/4 of the trail was great. The top 1/4 was still covered in snow. Because of the snow, it was impossible to stay on the trail. Luckily a couple of us had been there before, so we knew where the trail led & we still made it to the top. The trail is steep even if there was no snow to worry about. The snow made it interesting & made the destination that much more satisfying. There were no goats to be found when we reached the peak, but it was still worth every bit of work. 10/10 would recommend this hike

Lovely hike. Strenuous, but not particularly technical. Trail was obvious until I hit a good bit of snow 3/4 of a mile from the end. Will definitely do again later in Summer.

2 months ago

Favorite hike ever.

great hike..very difficult for someone not in good shape. half way up about 2ft + snow and the trail very narrow with little foot traffic. views are completely worth it. We took longer with more breaks and hiked out in complete dark..not recommended! we saw no animals but lots if tracks. hiking poles a must..the road to get to the trail not great, pot holes, lots of limbs down and icy..

Great hike was expecting a tougher hike, so I was very happy...
Unfortunately I went two weekends in a row 10/1 & 10/8 and didn't get a view at the top due to fog and clouds. The views heading up are amazing. Incredibly rewarding. Both hikes were at sunrise. Recommend afternoon arrival at the summit. Bring a heavy coat it's cold at the top.

7 months ago

Very cool hike

9 months ago

Must do hike!! Trail is well maintained! Trail is steep and some hikers may find it challenging. The beauty distracts though. Don't let this stop you, just plan on extra time.
Near the top (last 1000' roughly) the nice dirt changes to large fist sized rocks. It's not technical, but does require extra attention to not roll an ankle.
We hiked October 2, 2017: light sprinkle as we started from the trail head. This turned to snow at 5000', and started sticking at 6000'. By 6500' there was 1"-2" on the ground. At the peak our visibility was roughly 100'. Just enough to appreciate the steep slope on all sides. We also saw two mountain goats; a mother, and a kid.
Note: the getting there directions on AllTrails blow. Look up proper directions from Friends of Scotchman Peak and save your self some headache.

9 months ago

Welp, with a 35lb pack this trail up to the peak should be rated no less than difficult; without the pack, yeah, probably moderate but it's still fairly steep.

The trail is well maintained and simple to follow to the summit. After climbing to the ridge the trail mellows substantially until you reach the Engle Lake spur. From that intersection with the spur trail the peak lies another mile away with another 1,000 of elevation to gain.

We made the summit but the weather blew in as we drew within 500' of the peak and closed down the views. The wind was wickedly bitter so we only stayed atop for less than 10 minutes before JoRayne and I completed our day with a descent to the lake where we pitched camp for the night.

The campsite was nice. The weather not so much: rain, snain, fog, and wind. We stayed dry though and hiked out in the morning over the 1"+ of new snow.

We have to return to get our pics from the top but next trip we'll tackle in one day!

9 months ago

The lake was beautiful! We made it to the top of Engle Peak but missed out on the views due to fog. Good tough hike :)

The views are beautiful and the goats are really cool. I am glad I did this one.

9 months ago

My GPS recorded our journey on this trail (#924) at 10.06 miles from the Mckay Creek Rd. TH to the lake campsite. A demanding 20 miles round trip. The NFS sign at the TH claims it's 9 miles to Wanless Lake.

The first 2.35 miles will have your heart pumping and then the slope moderates from that point to about the 4 mile mark. From there to Goat Peak and the Ntl Forest boundary for Kanisku and Kootenai (6.6 miles) the trail slope and features are varied. With a 35lb pack and snow coming into play at 5200 ft, reaching a depth of ~6" at 6400 ft, JoRayne and I were on the trail for 7.5 hrs. About an hour of that time was for breaks.

Once we arrived at Goat Peak we considered climbing the rocky monster but the snow covered slope, mostly boulders and loose rock, would have made the attempt for the summit treacherous so we pushed on toward Wanless Lake.

We wandered down the snow covered trail to the upper lake and beyond; along the way seeing various animal paw (cat and Bear) and hoof (Moose and deer) prints in the snow. A bear also left its partially digested meal on the trail for us to see...croiky! One enormous windfall tree blocked the trail just short of the camp sites.

The lake was calm and the surrounding mountains make you feel really small. We had the place to ourselves and the night was peaceful and dry.

**We did not have access to water until we dropped into the canyon from Goat Peak ridge.

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