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Grandjean Sawtooth Lake Loop is a 18 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Lowman, Idaho that features a lake and is rated as moderate. 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.

Length 18.0 mi Elevation gain 3,940 ft Route type Loop
Dogs on leash Backpacking Camping Hiking Nature trips Walking Bird watching Forest Lake Views Blowdown Bugs
Description
Waypoints (0)

This can be a "one day" loop as long as hike start at sunrise and you're in good shape, otherwise make it a two day trip.  The trail head starts at Grandjean campground. If navigating counter clockwise, ensure to head up Trail creek (west) for about a quarter mile and cross the foot bridge to connect to the south bound Baron Creek trail (just after the creek crossing). The Baron trail is heavily used by horses until the trail veers east up the canyon (~2 miles).  At about 4.5miles, the trail forks between the Sawtooth Lake route and the Redfish Trail.  Heading NE from the fork, the trail is much less traveled and is occasionally overgrown.  At about mile 8, the trail condition improves.  The trail is now in the saddle heading toward Sawtooth Lake and apparently receives more traffic from the Stanley route  as greater trail wear is evident. The Sawtooth lake is magnificent!  Due to the rough terrain, not many campsites  are available on the east and southeast sides. However, plenty of camp site exist on the northeast side. Heading over the western rim of Sawtooth lake reveals a parched landscape of burned forest.  Approximately 5 miles of the trail traverse through the burn area. Though, not as scenic as the green forest, the burned area does have its own distinct beauty.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (40)
Photos (292)
Recordings (23)
Completed (61)
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Nathan Hansen
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 18, 2020
Hiking

Well worth my 800 mile round trip! More like a 20 mile loop. View video of this trail at https://youtu.be/yQxjrl-3gb4

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Alexander Barnes
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 13, 2020
Hiking

trail super over grown lots of rock slide and down trees brutal rock slide sections

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Kip Spittle
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 12, 2020
BackpackingGreat!

Really beautiful fall hike and we did the full 18-mile loop. We made this a two-day trek to complete the loop clockwise. Once you hit the trail, try to fill your Nalgene up at each river crossing, it helps to keep hydrated and make sure you hit your last fill-up around 4.5 miles up (as that will be the last natural water fill for a while). Mile 5-7 have you journeying through the burnt section of the trail; however, still beautiful in its own way. Keep in mind you will be going up for 7 straight miles. Water and river crossing were easy and painless in September with us never getting our feet wet. Once you hit the summit, the view is unbelievable. Take it in and then head on down to Sawtooth Lake on the North Fork Baron Sawtooth Lake Trail and water up. It reminded me of Crater Lake with its beauty. There are a few campspots once you hit the bottom, most are taken quickly, but don't fret - keep going past Sawtooth Lake and there are two more unnamed lakes that are amazing, quite and worth the extra mile to get to (bring your swim gear). We camped there for the night and my attached pictures show the view. This will put you at 10-11 miles into your 18 mile hike, so it will be a heavy first day, but worth it to take it a little easier on day two as most of the trek is downhill or flat. There are some rock slides that make the trail appear to stop, but within 30 seconds you will see where the trail picks up and make your way around any obstacles (rocks, fallen trees). Day 2 has you witnessing some amazing sites and water features as well. As a novice hiker in his 40's this hike was very doable and I had about 30 lbs on my pack. I was definitely tired, but nothing too tough and well worth the victory of completing the loop. I never felt lost and although the trail gets a little brushy, you can pretty easily find your way through. We saw a total of 8 humans on the trail, so there is lots of solitude. Hightly recommended trip. Remember to pack some iced adult beverages in your car as a reward upon you return. Enjoy!!!!

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Alexander Barnes
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 12, 2020
Hiking
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Alexander Barnes
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 11, 2020
Hiking

Much more difficult than expected. constant climbing. views are good but so far not sure they are worth the climb

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Jacque Sansaver
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 11, 2020
Horseback riding
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Alexander Barnes
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 10, 2020
Hiking
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Trevor Sherts
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 5, 2020
Camping

The first half getting to Sawtooth Lake is a long haul all up consistent grade and very exposed to sun due to the burned parts of forest. Views at the lake are spectacular as are the views heading past the lake into the valley. During early September when we did the hike portions of the return part of the loop going downhill were very overgrown, and some seemingly fresh rockfalls made for an interesting descent. overall well worth while trail.

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Kristen Hauser
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 5, 2020
Backpacking
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Noah Beumer
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 28, 2020
BackpackingGreat!Over grown

Great loop! Went clockwise and loved the dramatic reveal of Sawtooth Lake. Had some over growth, rock slides to navigate over and 2 decent river crossings on the way down.

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Kati Chachere
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 11, 2020
BackpackingBugsGreat!No shadeOver grown

Tips: Bring water shoes. Go CW. This trail is yet another amazing Sawtooth gem. I love how these trails were cut well and have a steady grade along with many magnificent viewpoints. The descent down the Baron Creek side is quite overgrown in places and there is some stinging nettle so wear pants that day. We camped at the McCord Lakes just short of the Sawtooth Lake saddle. The 4.2 quake was a surprise but we were opposite the lake from the ridge so at no risk for rockfall (although we heard plenty of it). Would highly recommend this trail.

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Danielle Janes
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 10, 2020
BackpackingOver grownRocky

What a great experience! We backpacked 8/6-8/8 and ascended clockwise up Trail Creek. We camped after a four mile ascent from the trailhead which made the final trek easier up to Sawtooth Lake and then camped just below Sawtooth at one of the smaller lakes down the Baron Creek side as Sawtooth Lake area was crowded. As other hikers have noted the descent down Baron Creek was overgrown in some parts making use of trekking poles solely for pushing brush out of my face. Many stream crossing both directions but with Gortex boots or a quick change into Chacos, no problem. Even experienced a 4.2 earthquake and witnessed a rock slide, but thankfully it was on the opposite side of the lake from our tent. Whew!!

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Aleksandr Petrovich
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 5, 2020
BackpackingGreat!Over grown

It was first hike in my life, not just in the mountaines - first ever. So, I did some mistakes but give the trail 5 stars anyway. First, do prepare carefully for mountaines, especialy if you are planning 2-days hike - shoes, warm sleeping staff etc. Second, do NOT go CCW as I did. Trail becomes much harder this way - it's overgrown, lots of fallen trees. I lost a couple of times and it took me a while to come back on the path. But more important thing - if you have never seen smth like that before, you will lose WOW-effect when you see the lake. So, go CW as it's mentioned on the map. Third, be prepare to cross creeks and get wet at leaast three times. I got wet only once just because I got lucky. But it was really dangerous when I used a fallen tree to cross one. I very recommed the trail but be prepare and go clock wise.

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Noah Russell
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 3, 2020
BackpackingOver grownSnow

Amazing adventure, would highly recommend shoes for crossing rivers as you will be crossing them 4 times in water. Would highly recommend!

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Kate T
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarJune 22, 2020
BackpackingOver grown

We went counterclockwise on the loop this weekend (June 20). Beautiful walk along the river, quite flat to start out, but then the trail became overgrown when you start the ascent upwards. We were able to pass the first crossing of the North Fork at 5600 ft, but at the second crossing at 6400 feet, the water was flowing too fast and too high, and it was just above a waterfall so the consequences of falling were too great to risk. We figured it best to turn around — and maybe try later in the season when the water levels are lower!

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Val Decker
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 8, 2019
Hiking

I hiked this in early August. I didn't do the full loop, just grandjean to sawtooth lake and out iron Creek, going up to both trail creek lakes and observation peak. the trail creek trail was in good shape and easy to follow, but I did have two sections with lots of logs across the trail (maybe climbing over or around 30-40?). otherwise very scenic and wonderful views of lakes. I did it all the way to sawtooth lake in a day but I should have stopped, at McGown or one of the earlier lakes. A mile of elevation gain is a bit much for my fitness level.

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Nathan Rois
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 25, 2019
BackpackingBugsOver grown
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Nolan Zorn
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 10, 2019
BackpackingOver grown

Did this hike several years ago and it was fantastic. Highly recommend. We hiked it counterclockwise, and some parts of the ascent along the east side of the route we're overgrown as others have said, but the trail was still easy to follow.

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Hunter Riccardelli
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJune 29, 2019
BackpackingOver grownSnow
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Luke Ivers
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJune 24, 2019
Hiking

The conditions are a little rough going up. Lots of fallen trees due to avalanches and slides. Still a bit of snow on top (4-5 miles of walking in snow) but doable with hiking boots. Lots of overgrown brush on the way down. Found several ticks on me when I got home so I would advise wearing repellent and/or being fully covered through the thick brush areas. FYI, the road leading to the trail head is closed due to a rock slide and by the looks of it, it will probably be closed for a few months so the closest place to park is about a mile and half from the trailhead (Grand Jean).

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Michael Balafas
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 19, 2019
Hiking

will be giving this trail a go mid to late july...can't wait to see how I do

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