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Goat Lake and Goat Falls via Iron Creek Trail, Alpine Way Trail

HARD 144 reviews
#1 of 29 trails in

Goat Lake and Goat Falls via Iron Creek Trail, Alpine Way Trail is a 8.1 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Stanley, Idaho that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from April until September. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 8.1 miles Elevation Gain: 1,788 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

backpacking

camping

fishing

hiking

nature trips

bird watching

forest

lake

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

over grown

rocky

scramble

snow

off trail

This hike starts on a well defined trail and ends with a scramble. The entire hike is uphill and the end is the most challenging, but the views along the way and the lake itself are well worth the hard work. Can be done as a day hike, day trip from Sawtooth Lake, or as a backpacking trip. See the tips section for more help!

11/7/19 - the trail had a good amount of snow. It was pretty easy going until about a 1/4 mile from the lake, then it was straight up and covered in ice. While there were other people’s tracks, we lost them at the stream crossing which definitely made things more difficult. It would have been much easier (I mean, still hard because it’s like straight up) if there hadn’t been snow and ice. I took my two dogs. They didn’t have nearly as difficult of a time as we did. It was absolutely gorgeous though! So so amazing! I’ll definitely be doing this hike again in the summer!

hiking
rocky
scramble
2 months ago

It had been 14 years since I last hiked Goat Lake. This hike is one of my favorites, and I know I'll return to it again in the future. It sounds insane, but you truly must jump in once you arrive. We hiked this one in mid-September on a beautiful, sunny day in the high 60's. We hiked in on a Sunday and passed quite a few people coming back down, but in the hour or so we spent at the lake we only saw about 3 other people. The tips and tricks on AllTrails were really helpful, but we did encounter a few hiccups: - The first big boulder (with the previously mentioned scree) that you need to climb/cross is to your right (don't go left down the cliff!). - When you're looking for the beaver damn to cross the creek, you'll need to climb up some boulders to the right as well (you'll make a bit of a horseshoe away from the creek and then back around to it). We left a little cairn to mark this spot. Every time we ran into an issue it was because we were scared of veering too much to the right and running into the boulder field. There are a couple of spots where you do need to veer right a bit in order to not end up scrambling down a sheer cliff of scree. TL;DR: What are you waiting for?

hiking
3 months ago

definitly a scramble with a pack on for the last few miles. one the most beautiful lakes in the sawtooths. I would change to heavy trafficked. I saw probably over 150 people coming up on our way down. avoid on weekends if your looking for a peaceful place without a bunch of people.

hiking
rocky
scramble
3 months ago

Awesome views, wish I would have checked the AllTrails site before heading out as there really aren't to many great maps out there when looking up this trail. I intended to just go to view the falls via the Alpine Way junction. I missed the sign to turn left on that junction since the sign is about 8-9 feet up and attached to a tree that is a similar color to the sign. I saw the sign on the way down from the lake. I decided to continue onto the lake since I missed the turn off on AW. The lake is beautiful. I dropped my pack and left it for about an hour, walked around the lake, and took some photos. I wish I would have swam. There were people fishing and enjoying the lake. The last mile is tricky and on the way down it can feel like you are snowboarding. Next time I go I am going to make that junction to see what the falls look like from below.

hiking
3 months ago

Beautiful hike. You get views the entire way up. It's really breathtaking. It starts off easy, becomes moderate and finishes a little difficult. Once it becomes really steep, STAY LEFT. There's a "barely there" trail that pretty much stays left the whole way to the boulder field. Once we reached the boulder field, we again veered left and found the water. We followed the water up to the lake, bypassing the boulder field entirely. We started this hike the same time as several others but finished before they did because we skipped the boulder field.

backpacking
off trail
rocky
scramble
3 months ago

Would not recommend taking kids a scramble with a pack on.

backpacking
off trail
rocky
scramble
3 months ago

hiking
rocky
scramble
3 months ago

Read the tips - the scree in the last mile is super screwy. Otherwise, great hike.

hiking
no shade
rocky
scramble
3 months ago

Took me and beagle buddy 10 miles to complete as we got a bit off trail near the end. I would suggest reading others advice on avoiding as much of the Boulder field as possible as my little beagle had a tough time on it but soldiered on through. All in all it was a tough but manageable hike for a small dog.

hiking
4 months ago

My girlfriend, my dog, and I did this hike yesterday. Took about 10 miles out and back. The first part of the hike was relatively easy. Then once you get to the last mile till the peak it gets a little difficult. There is no exact trail to follow and it is loose rock and gravel. Although it was difficult, I would say that most anyone can climb it because we did it with a dog. Once you get to Goat Lake at the top it is breathtaking. We all jumped in and it was the coldest water but most refreshing and rewarding water after that hike to cool off. Overall I recommend this hike and will defiantly do it again.

hiking
4 months ago

Moderate to difficult once you leave the trail. A Sawtooth gem

hiking
4 months ago

A truly spectacular and wonderful hike. The waterfall is stunning and Goat Lake’s hue is otherworldly. Hiking past Goat Lake to reach the 3 lakes behind it is challenging but deeply rewarding. Lots of rainbow trout and flowers everywhere in late July. We did this as a two night backpacking trip, spending one night at goat lake and the next night at the back lakes.

hiking
4 months ago

The trail is easy for the first 3 miles- towards the end it definitely gets difficult. Lots of climbing. I don’t recommend for young children or anyone not experienced in hiking. When you get to the falls - keeping pushing towards it and avoid the boulder field. You’ll have to cross the tops of the falls to get to the lake! Well worth the hike.

hiking
off trail
rocky
scramble
4 months ago

Amazing! Totally worth the effort. The scramble is no joke, especially on the way down. Don’t cross the boulder field, stay low and go left across the small creek and pick up the trail agin to the lake.

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