Bench Lakes Trail is a 7.8 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Stanley, Idaho that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from May until October.

Distance: 7.8 miles Elevation Gain: 1,240 feet Route Type: Out & Back

backpacking

camping

cross country skiing

hiking

nature trips

walking

bird watching

lake

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

no dogs

hiking
muddy
rocky
snow
5 hours ago

Was a fun May hike. Trail got a little snowy and muddy near the two first lakes but it a gradual climb with great views of redfish to the south and the sawtooth still the north! Will come back in late summer

recorded Bench Lakes Trail

hiking
snow
3 days ago

Def hit past the first lake, there’s 5. Snow the last little bit. Maybe .05 miles. We were falling thru due to snow melt.

hiking
muddy
snow
8 days ago

great trail, even in later may, snow covered last 1/3 mile but easy to traverse with just hiking shoes, beautiful views from the icy lakes

hiking
icy
snow
6 months ago

hiking
8 months ago

It's okay. Not my favorite. Lake did not WOW me.

hiking
8 months ago

Great little trail. This is a reasonably slow grade. We actually ended about .5 miles away from the trail end and cut down to a boat launch to get a ride back in. The trails are very well maintained and the scenery is amazing.

hiking
blowdown
9 months ago

hiking
bugs
9 months ago

Lovely views! We took the ferry to the top of the lake then walked back to the lodge. Good choice for a more moderate hike in an area with lots of long/challenging hikes

hiking
9 months ago

B.e.a.utiful

hiking
bugs
10 months ago

hiking
bugs
10 months ago

Well maintained trail with beautiful views! 2nd lake has a better view of the sawtooths! Bring bug spray- the horse flies and mosquitoes are hungry.

hiking
10 months ago

I am new to All Trails, so I could agree this is a moderate, well-used trail. The middle part of the hike—along a ridge—was delightful with great views and amazing granite exposure. There were numerous other (courteous) users on a busy weekend, but the beauty of the surroundings outweighed that consideration.

hiking
10 months ago

It was a good hike to do one time. I wasn't in love with the lakes at the end and wouldn't go back. We went to the second lake, and it is prettier than the first. We heard from another couple that the third lake further on was the nicest, but we didn't venture there. The bugs were bad at the lakes.

hiking
10 months ago

Low traffic. Beautiful and the majority of the trail runs along and above Redfish Lake, which is beautiful. Bench Lake itself is lovely and you can sit and have lunch next to it. Took about 8 miles round trip and easily be extended into a longer hike as needed.

hiking
11 months ago

Great day hike! My husband & I live in Boise and thought this was an easy hike, but my sister visiting from Kansas found it more difficult. We took our dog along and he loved the lakes at the top. Be sure to bring a lot of water (especially for your dog!) as there is a lot of sun exposure.

hiking
11 months ago

Awesome day hike! trail is in great condition.

hiking
11 months ago

Thoroughly enjoyed hiking this trail on June 14, 2019! Instead of doing the out and back, we bought a one-way ferry ride ticket ($12) from the Redfish Lodge Marina to the trailhead 3 or 4 miles down the lake and hiked the trail up to Bench Lakes, and then after taking the spoke trail to the lakes, hiked back to the lodge. The total miles we hiked was about the same as if you do the out-and-back, but it was nice to treat it as a "loop" by adding the boat ride. The wildflowers and views of the mountain peaks on the way up were spectacular.

hiking
11 months ago

Trail was dry and easy to follow. Opens up to pretty scenery and mountain backdrops. Only hiked to the first two lakes, second lake had a better view and some shaded areas to hang out. Pretty easy quick hike

hiking
snow
11 months ago

I would highly recommend this trail to anyone with the physical ability to hike a distance in the higher altitude. We hiked it in the first week of June and weren’t sure what trail conditions to expect (since the locals told us that there could still be a decent amount of snow this time of year). The trail was totally clear of snow up until the last 1/4 mile. However, the trail was still visible and somewhat easy to follow (even for beginners like us). The hardest part was getting used to breathing in higher altitudes in cooler weather. But this was the most beautiful experience and we would recommend it to anyone willing to try it.

hiking
11 months ago

Beautiful view of Mountains and lakes. Easy hike for all ages!

hiking
11 months ago

Great hike for all ages. nice views all the way, and wildflowers in the early summer. would definitely do again!

Sat Feb 02 2019

Enjoy this hike best in the springtime. Great day hike.

Thu Jan 10 2019

this trail hikes up on a ridge. you can smell the wild flowers! amazing views. not entirely difficult, just a few breaks. end is great view!

hiking
Wed Oct 10 2018

Brought my father-in-law here and loved this trail. He is agrees it’s one of the best hikes he’s done in his life! I’m looking forward to doing this again and backpacking further!

Mon Sep 03 2018

Loved this trail! We hiked with a 7 year old and a dog and it was a moderate hike. The views were stunning. Saw few deer and chipmunks on the way. We went early enough to avoid the heat and it proved to be a good decision! The redfish lake looked beautiful along the trail and the bench lakes were a treat to the eyes.

hiking
Wed Aug 08 2018

What a fantastic hike!! Did this today, and the gradual incline is just enough to keep you honest and the overall out and back distance is far enough to make it count! Go early on a warmer day as there’s not too much shade. Beautiful scenery, fabulous views! Hits all the high marks!

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