Explore the most popular Camping trails in Kootenai 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.

hiking
snow
26 days ago

Waterfall and mine were 3.2 miles by our calculations. Beautiful hike with light snow but totally hikeable. This is an old road to waterfall. Not a single track trail

hiking
2 months ago

Had a devastating ankle injury last October. This was the first long hike I went on since injury. Did a few short hikes before cedar lakes and my ankle was talking to me. No problems what so ever on this hike. The trail is a long constant up hill hike. The trail says hard but I would say moderate. I had thick fog 3/4 of the way up and then the sun came out. Following the creek almost all the way up, was quite tranquil. Made it to the first lake... very beautiful. The hike to the upper lake gives you a great view of the lower lake. The upper lake is absolutely beautiful as well. I wanted to hike to upper rim to look down on the upper lake but didn’t want to push my luck with my ankle. No mosquito problems what so ever. I would definitely do this hike again. I would love to make it to the upper rim. I would definitely recommend this hike. If your an experienced hiker you may be bored of the long continuous hike with very few obstacles.

hiking
rocky
2 months ago

Likes the hike up to Lake Estelle. LOVED Lake Estrelle, beautiful cold colorful water surrounded by pure nature. Luckily I READ the reviews and wore pants since there are a lot of parts that are bushy. Could not resist to pick huckleberries on the way back close to parking lot. The last 3-4 miles to the parking lot was absolutely rocky. Absolutely NOT recommended for a normal street car has to be a 4wd or SUV like. I put some pics to this review.

hiking
over grown
2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

Hiked this last fall. Beautiful hike for fall colors. Good incline the last 1.5 miles

hiking
bugs
2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful hike and Lake.

hiking
3 months ago

Great swim spot, I had the lake all to myself on a Sunday.

hiking
3 months ago

Continual gradual incline - sometimes along the creek, sometimes not. Had good shade for majority of the way. Had to turn back a bit before the lower lake as a black bear was on the trail eating berries.

hiking
rocky
scramble
3 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

gorgeous hike. we camped at upper cedar lake. lots of mosquitos when the wind wasn’t howling. nice flat camp spots in the trees. trail is is great condition, couple looooooong uphill spots, but overall, i’d say this is moderate, not hard. met quite a few people hiking in on sunday as we were hiking out, so it probably gets a lot of traffic being so close to libby.

hiking
over grown
rocky
scramble
3 months ago

loved this hike. short but decent elevation gain so nice workout. pleasant hike all the way, different feel and some views. can hear creek the entire way. definately some minor scrambles over rocks in a few areas. easy to get to falls. looks like there may be a path up the left side of the creek from there but most go right. path seemed easy to find but after maybe 30 feet it takes a hard left. but at that point, wider trail looks like it goes straight. ended hiking up a bit of a goat trail I think. lake is lovely. bit overgrown on way in but easy to stay on path. enjoy!

over grown
3 months ago

Wear pants the bushes are blocking a lot of the trail. It was beautiful and about 5.7 Mike's. FYI it is about a 45 minute drive up trestle creek to the trail head.

hiking
bugs
over grown
3 months ago

A really decent hike if you don’t want to see anyone on the trail, we didn’t see a sole. The trail doesn’t seem to be used much and it’s starting to get overgrown. Sometimes you can’t see where your stepping and trip quite a bit. Take a left at the sign about 4.5 miles up the trail. The lake is beautiful and a little cold. Take good bug spray if you want to hang around. The misquotes are pretty bad.

hiking
rocky
scramble
4 months ago

Beautiful, lots of huckleberry, but spent most of the time watching my feet or looking for the trail above the falls

hiking
bugs
snow
4 months ago

Hiked this In May. Ticks were everywhere. The first water crossing was tough. It took some time to figure out how to do it. There were some slender logs laid over it. Found out I just had to side step on the lower branch, and use the upper as a hand hold. It was pretty easy going after that. Once you hit the old mine carry on up. It was snowed over in some places so it takes time to make sure your footing is good. Lots of flowers. Great views. The lake is a great place to chill and worth the hike. We saw mountain goats high in the mountain. Keep your eyes peeled. Take your time and wear long pants. Ticks are everywhere.

My husband and I enjoyed this hike. We felt it is somewhere between easy and moderate. It took us a few minutes to catch our breath at the beginning because of the elevation. There is a lot of brush in places on the trail but passable. There are spectacular views, lots of flowers blooming. We encountered quite a few mosquitos and only a few other people. Very peaceful and beautiful. Bring bear spray.

hiking
scramble
4 months ago

hiking
bugs
4 months ago

Don’t do this trail without bug spray. I’ve done plenty of trails in Montana and have never thought the bugs were bad, compared to other areas of the country. Should have listened to previous reviews, even with bug spray, the mosquitoes are relentless. Almost feel claustrophobic because they surround you. Lake is only 5.5 miles, but the last two miles are bug infested. And almost not worth sitting at the lake because of mosquitos. Two steeps part of the trail. One of them is early in the trail, but long. Gets better from there. Continuing up the trail to the ridge is worth it.

We absolutely loved this hike! Perfectly challenging with gorgeous views. We did the hike 6/22/2019 and we hit snow on the backside of the peak .5 miles before the end. So we couldn’t actually finish it, but still awesome!

hiking
5 months ago

Great trail! Just a couple patches of snow at the top still. Very easy and fun hike!

hiking
rocky
scramble
5 months ago

Trail is pretty uphill with rock scrambles. We didn’t go to the right lake about 2 weeks ago. We took a wrong turn. Someone spray painted on a tree which road to take and found the correct trailhead. The scrambles are kind of difficult and can easily get you lost. To the right of the waterfall there is a faint white arrow pointing you in the right direction. The most beautiful lake I have ever been to. Definitely need spray.

hiking
5 months ago

This hike is definitely worth the effort for the end result..... one of the most beautiful alpine lakes I have spent the night at! As always, good boots that fit properly are essential on this hike. If you plan on camping at the lake, I suggest you get started early because there are ONLY a few places suitable (level) to pitch a small tent. We did not see any goats or bear but there was lots of white goat hair on bushes where we chose to camp. Had a visit in the middle of the night by something since I woke up to my dog barking. Just made some noise and whatever critter was there left because we had no other problems the rest of the night. I would NOT GO on this hike WITHOUT BEAR SPRAY though. Everyone should read the literature at the trailhead regarding the wildlife to minimize attracting the goats. The goats also can be fairly aggressive from what I have read.

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