Explore the most popular nature trips 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.

Loved it! Once you start you go up and up and it doesn’t stop till you reach the top. Be sure you start early to allow for rest breaks. The views at the top are well worth the struggle to get there. Once at the top you will be greeted by goats that are eager to lick any rocks you sit on, but be sure bring a coat and maybe hats/gloves because the wind will cut through you and the temps drop a bit. The down hill was much faster but just as difficult. This is where I got the blisters. All in all, can’t wait to do it again.

hiking
2 days ago

Holy Heck!!! This hike was a tough one - but worth every sore muscle. Definitely start early, so you can take lots of well deserved breaks. Goats and scenery were spectacular! The downhill is tougher than the up, (because going down you’re totally exhausted).

This is a great hike. Its straight up and straight down. No flat sections. This is for the well conditioned hiker. Tons of elevation and lots of uneven terain. Most of our party was sore the next day. Training with hills is a good idea first.

hiking
10 days ago

This is a great hike but I don't know what was more challenging going up or coming down. The trail is soon to be over grown by huckleberry bushes darn it and has a lot of down trees and over growth about half way. In some locations the trail is hard to see on the up trip but more visible on the way down. I liked this hike for the challenge and the great views. It has a lot to offer for those who are looking for a little more adventure than the common trails. The only people I saw where a couple bow elk hunters. I'd say around the half way point is when the trail kinda falls apart but its pretty easy just keep going up.
I think the next trip will be up and over to Scotsman and down :)

hiking
14 days ago

Keep following #65 it's a small sign but as long as you follow it it's easy to find. You will be driving on an unpaved road for a little while. Be patient.

You will need a light layer /sweater. It will get cold when it's getting close to the top.

Need good shoes since you will be walking on rocks later on. but no need hiking shoes. I had trail running shoes and they were fine. You will get dirt on your feet for very much 3/4the time. You shouldn't wear sandals!

Definitely, need water and a little snack. I burned 2300 calories with this whole hike! Get some fuel for coming down!

There are two bathrooms only at the trailhead. Yes, toilet paper but No water.

It took us 5:20 for the whole trail. The ”incline” starts right away. It was a real tough hike!!!! But like everyone says, it is worth to see those cute goats and the view. Some parts are shaded but I wouldn't recommend hiking there if it's hotter than 80s.
If you have a knee issue, you will need a pair of knee compressor or brace for when you are going down.
We had a goat on the trail today when we were coming down and he did not move for a while. My friend threw a little rock gently by the goat and he took off. (not at the goats!!)

19 days ago

The trail description is incorrect! It's about 3 1/2 (easy) miles to the waterfall and Heildleberg mine, not sure how many miles (2?) from there to the lake but that is where you will encounter the elevation gain. I've sent Altrails a suggestion to edit the info.

hiking
24 days ago

Great hike!!! The smoke obscured some of the awesome views but still totally worth it! The sign said not to harass the goats... they were harassing us! Kept coming back up to us to lick the salt off our skin!

backpacking
1 month ago

This is a stunning hike. Our Garmin recorded 5mi each way. Trail is as described by others. We were able to get there in our Prius, road is rocky and potholed but with care it's doable. There is a camp just before the trailhead on the left that has space and horse hitches. Plenty of room for cars and trailers, no drop toilet at trailhead. There's a few wooded group camps along the way and a spot right by the falls. Camping at the lake is tricky if there are others there. Like others said, cross the creek and there's a rugged trail you can follow, it's pretty overgrown but there are a few other spots. Bring a hammock too for more options, there isn't much flat ground. Lake is great to swim in. The group next to us caught 4 fish. Hang your food. Great hike, only downside is lack of flat ground at the lake.

hiking
1 month ago

Man! The work:reward ratio on this hike sucked! 22 miles. 4,500' climb. 11 miles of jeep track to a view of the lake (no refreshing dip (with or without clothes. We'll never know. But I didn't see a single person on the way up...) with little beside Indian paintbrush and daisies for interest. Knowing I still had to get back to the truck and seeing that I'd have to rush to get back before my battery died, and, more importantly, it looked like another mile and 1,000' of climbing after dropping down to it, I passed, had a couple Fig Newtons, some Cornuts and Gatorade (saving, I guess, my forgotten burrito for post-hike nourishment) and turned around.

Beautiful but brutal hike. Trail was well maintained and the views were spectacular. Lots of goats at the top that didn’t try to approach us but were definitely not afraid of humans. Can’t wait to do the hike again. There’s a small campsite toward the top just before the push to the peak that we might try to stay at next time.

Hazy day and not one goat was seen, but still an amazing hike. One lone pika at the top that peaked out to say hello. Heard a bear grunting on our way down, probably about a mile from the trail head, but didnt stick around long enough to see if we could see him. All in all it was a great hike.

At the beginning, I was selfishly bummed knowing the smoke would ruin our view, and it was no fun breathing it in the first half of the incline. But obviously I got over it! This hike is amazing! About half way up, a medium size black bear was sitting in the middle of the trail. He seemed very inconvenienced that we arrived and quickly waddled off and down the mountain side. We waited there a while to make sure there wasn’t another one. The hike is hard, the top is incredible and the mountain goats... are too used to humans :( 3 adults with 1 babe. Take your pictures and continue on your way. What an experience!!

1 month ago

It’s a great trail. Very consistent incline for 4 miles. Trail was in great shape. We saw goat fur! Very smoky so no view

Absolutely beautiful hike! Make sure to follow road markers 65 and not Google maps. There is some pretty intense elevation gain but some beautiful lookout points on the way up. Well worth the hike!

hiking
1 month ago

Hiked to Rock Lake on August 6, 2018. First, the trail is not 2.7 miles - even one way. My GPS clocked it as 9.6 out and back, with a total elevation gain of 3,100 feet. This is from the gate on F-150A. The first three miles is an old mining road with a steady, gradual incline. The swampy area along the way is perfect for Moose. We believe we heard one but never saw it. And although we never saw a bear, there was enough fresh scat on the trail to keep us aware they were around.

The falls at the three-mile mark is beautiful. There is plenty of old mining equipment around. At this point, the trail makes a dramatic change. Just before you reach the falls, the trail makes a sneaky right, up the mountain. You'll probably pass it along the way. After you admire the falls for a bit, turn around, walk about 15 yards and the trail will be on your left.

For the next mile, you will switch back your way up 1,000 feet in elevation to the lake. I hike, often, so this wasn't hard for me, but those of us who weren't used to the climb had to take a few breaks.

The lake is beautiful. As you arrive, there are two camping spots. I crossed the creek and discovered a nice trail along the left side of the lake. I have read that there is a campsite on the other side of the lake, as well. The trail is not what I would call difficult. We had kids with us as young as ten and they did very well.

This is August, so the afternoons can be hot. I suggest that you start early. We were on the trail for 6.5 hours. That includes lunch and tooling around - five hours actually hiking. Bring bear spray and a little bug spray as well. Some of us got bit a couple of times. By the way, there was little if any smoke.

We did this as a day hike, but I could easily pack it in and stay two or three nights. There are several great peaks to explore and I have heard the fishing ain't bad, either. Me, I could take my Bible and my journal, have a seat on one of those rocks and be content for the day.

This hike was number 85 for me this year. It will certainly end up as one of my top 10 in 2018!

hiking
1 month ago

This hike took almost exactly 4 hours up and 2.5 hours down.
Going up took what felt like forever. We just had to remember that we had to go through the forest, then the meadow, and finally up the scramble to the peak. We never saw any large animals until the scramble where we saw 2 mountain goats. We did see lots of deer tracks though.
Right after we passed the mountain goats sign, we saw a large maintain goat and it’s baby! We made our way to the top and ate lunch.
Going down was hard on the feet and the knees but it didn’t take as long.
Lots of nice views along the trail and at the peak. You can see all the way from the lake to Montana at the top of the mountain.
This hike IS HARD but if you take your time and enjoy the views, it will be worth it. Good luck!

1 month ago

I did the loop today (Aug 6) which fitbit counted as 7.5 mi. I did it clockwise hitting the lake first then climbing Moose Mt. Took just over 4 hrs with stops for snack, lunch, and photos. It was fairly easy except for ascending and descending Moose Mt. which had some steep stretches. Awesome views at lake and along the mountain ridge. Too early for huckleberries but bushes are aplenty along much of this hike. The trail was very overgrown and bushwhacking was required in a few areas. Road to the TH is rough for the last 3 miles and it’s slow going if you want to protect your tires.

Very pretty hike to the lake. Lots of flies around if you stop for too long but otherwise a great day with pretty views.

We definitely underestimated this trail. It was pretty hard but the top makes it well worth it! My 9 year old hiked this the whole way. My 3 year old hiked about 4 miles of it. He could probably do the whole thing if we hadn’t gotten there at nap time. It took us about 5 hours to get to the top and 2.5 down.

The drive up the trail is beautiful. Unfortunately we were unable to do the hike though. Be aware that the grizzly bear territory caution sign that you see driving up is very prevalent. A baby grizzly ran across the forest road about 20 yards ahead of us so we turned around and headed out as to not wait for the mom who I’m sure wasn’t far behind! Bummed we couldn’t do the hike, but wasn’t about to take any chances! Be careful!

camping
1 month ago

So beautiful!
You get to hike by the stream and then you can swim just below a waterfall, and all on your way up!
Me and my friend camped for 1 night by the lake and it was so perfect! Plus tons of huckleberries to eat on your way up! We also got to see s mamma goat and her two babies!
would definitely recommend this trail!

backpacking
1 month ago

Great Hike! Lush greenery, started at 7pm just as it was raining.. decided to go for it.. took 2 hours to push it up there.. but it’s so worth it! One of my all time backpacking trips .

Beautiful view at the top. We were able to see several goats towards the peak. The hike was relatively difficult but do-able and well worth it!

hiking
1 month ago

Hiked August 2017.

Be prepared for some MASSIVE elevation gain. The switchbacks make it bearable but for the novice hiker be prepared...it's going to take you some time to reach the top. We decided to break at every switchback. The first couple miles lead you through dense forest and then you reach a clearing of what's called "the meadows." Here you will start dealing with the trail fading in and out of slate rock until it becomes a scramble the last half mile to the summit.

Take a moment to enjoy the views of the surrounding Scotchman Wilderness and Lake Pend Oreille in the distance.

A note to the wise...the mountain goats aren't only found at the summit. We started finding their fur right at the meadows and encountered a total of eight on our journey. Including a mother with her kid. Also please be respectful of these majestic creatures. This is THEIR territory you are intruding on. You are a guest in THEIR home. Do not approach them. Do not try to feed them. Do not let them lick you.

After over four hours of strenuous hiking my Dad, my dog and I made it to the summit. All the sweat, all the leg cramps, all of it was worth it at that moment.

Shout out to my Dad for accomplishing something he wasn't sure he could. And he KILLED that mountain. So did my little dog.

Mr. Scotchman....thank you for the challenge.

hiking
1 month ago

About half way up there is a gorgeous waterfall. I thought kids could do the hike to the falls, after that the trail gets more difficult with uneven rockiness, switchbacks and cliffs. The views from the falls to the lake are stunning and there were lots of huckleberries to pick along the way and plenty of shade for rest. The lake is cold and a welcome reward at the top. We didn’t hike up and around the lake, but next time I want to. We had a big group and didn’t see any bears, but we were told it’s grizzly country by the lady at the nearby gas station.

Do not follow the directions here on the app. They take you about two miles from the trailhead. Websearch friends of scothman peak and the directions listed there from Clark fork are spot on.

backpacking
2 months 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 !

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