Explore the most popular backpacking trails in Idaho with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Very well maintained trail with amazing views to reward you for the effort. 6 mile drive on forest service roads to get to trailhead.

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!

on Stevens Lakes

snowshoeing
12 days ago

This is my favorite quick getaway! We snowshoed in on New Years Day 2019. Had to park just south of the freeway bridge due to snow. Broke trail around 10:30. Both switch backs where lost in the snow so we we straight up. It was a good workout, but do-able. There was over 5.5 feet of snow at the lower lake and °14. Got back to the truck at 3:00. Awesome hike ♡

hiking
20 days ago

Did this trail at the end of December. There was a lot of snow and with about .3 miles left on the trail there was a steep narrow incline with a lot of snow that I just couldnt climb up so I called it for another time. That being said, the people who were snowshoeing were able to get across, with a little difficultly in that one spot but still made it farther than I did with snowboots and crampons (not really necessary). The trail is gorgeous. There were a few other people out on snowmobiles in other areas that you can hear nearby and I saw a few back country ski and snowboarders. It is a beautiful trail, just dress in warm, waterproof clothes. I will definitely go back to this trail again soon.

Our yearly trek! Waterfall canyon is also definitely worth the extra push. If you're planning to make it an overnighter the far side of the upper lake is the prime territory. Been up here 4 years running and have always seen wildlife. Last time a moose stumbled upon us and gave us all a good jump. I don't know who was more surprised us or her.

snowshoeing
1 month ago

One of favorite alpine lakes. It made for one epic snowshoe. Be prepared for technical shoeing, cold conditions and predators.

backpacking
1 month ago

Amazing area, good first backpacking trip hike/ location!

Fun trail close to town. It's pretty steep, but the scenery at the top is nice. Some bouldering near the old lookout tower is a nice change of pace

Nice trip! Really nice trip! Hiked counter clockwise to toxaway lake the first day. The second day we took a day trip up sand mountain pass, over to Imogene and Edith lakes. Got back to camp faster than expected so fished on toxaway all afternoon and spent our second night there. Day 3 headed to Alice lake and wow! There are two sites that are towards the end of the lake and they are worth getting there early! Amazing! Swam for a while then fished all evening. We all caught nice size Brooke’s. Day 4 out was a bit longer than expected but a nice finish to the trip

Went in late August and weather was pretty chilly, mid 30s at night

I absolutely love the beginning of the hike, the way the trees fall over the straights like an abandoned blvd in a movie. The hike itself Seel little direct sunlight and that keeps temps perfect. Did a quick hike this November with the intent of camping but limited spaces available, would have gone to the upper lake but friends backed out. Will try again!

great!!!! fun out and back when you need a nice, sheltered hike

this is definitely a hike that is accessible in the winter as long as it's not crazy snowy. The trail was easy to follow and trafficked.

2 months ago

Hiked 2 days ago. A few inches of snow was on trail for the last mile or so to the summit. I had yak trax just in case but didn’t need them The rest had icy spots & frost. No problem getting to trailhead or driving on Forest road with my Honda CR-V. Chilco is one of my favorite trails in the area!

trail running
2 months ago

A good trail for a constant chill uphill run. As stated before views aren’t that great, but it’s pretty good for a medium length run. Even at a pretty relaxed pace you should be able to complete in 4 hours. Couple downed trees on the trail and the last 2 miles is snowy. Doesn’t seem like you need to worry about mountain bikers shuttling the trail this time of year.

hiking
2 months ago

I hiked this through the snow with my parents (in their 60s) on November 10th and it was beautiful! We got to the end and the fog lifted, giving us an amazing view of the Sawtooth Range. Its an easy trail, even when it has 4-5 inches of snow on the ground and its 25 degrees outside.

Gorgeous views, lakes, waterfalls, everything a great backpacking trip consists of! Wow!!! Breathtaking!

Great adventure. Be prepared. The weather can change quickly. Best in late July - early September. Plan on 7-10 hours round trip.

Wow! First weekend in November and a perfect day to Hike. Last Mile had about 5 or 6 big switchbacks and took a little longer getting up that part, but so worth the view.

4th of July weekend. It was Hot! Very little shade do to the Fire and all the burnt trees. We did the loop and and on the way back the trail got narrow a bit and at times the trail had a high cliff going down to the river. We had to keep moving out of the way for Motorbikes. It was tough when the trail was so narrow. We also seen a few Motorbikes that had fallen down the steep cliff and were left next to the river. The lake was so beautiful and crisp cold, so it was refreshing. We didn't make it to the plane due to flooding. Will try and go back when it is cooler and hopefully see the plane.

3rd trail I have ever hiked and it was perfect for a beginner. Last weekend in October and the weather was great. Recommend going with others. There were Wolf tracks near the lake and on the trail near the lake. Didn't see any, but just be careful. The lake was so beautiful and peaceful. I would highly do this hike again.

backpacking
2 months ago

Wonderful hike. Definitely doable in a single day. I spent a night there with my pup. Hiked in after sundown on a Friday, got hit with snow overnight, and hiked out on Saturday. Highly suggest staying overnight. Makes it a bit more relaxing and less of a training session. On my list to do again and again.

hiking
2 months ago

Great hike. moderate is a fair rating based on a regular hiker. Good elevation gain but short distance. Good payoff for moderate effort. Both lower and and upper seemed to have nice campsites. No snow as of 10/24. Noticed the time changed to Mountain on our phones between lower and upper. Bringing the fishing pole next year.

hiking
2 months ago

Moderate wouldn't be the best way to describe this hike. There is a lot of different terrain which keeps it fun but theres a large area of rocky terrain that can be challenging to walk up (even though there is a slight path created) especially after fast incline with shakey legs! it is beautiful but bring spikes just in case anytime after October as it can get icy on a very narrow trail just at the top. One of the most beautiful and serene hikes I've done. Dogs should be leashed ALWAYS but on this trail we saw some un leashed dogs and it could be very dangerous for even well behaved pups.

2 months ago

10/27 - no snow on the trail or surrounding peaks. Well maintained and no obstructions on main route. Circumnavigation of the lake is possible but not well marked; steep, muddy and poor footing in places. The drive out through Murray and along the river was beautiful. Plan enough time for breakfast at Snake Pit or lunch and beers in Wallace.

Nice Hike in late Sept. Hiked in via the normal trail that requires crossing the river; and returned via trail on same side of the river. Clean perfect temp hot spring.

Very steep hike and the trail is well maintained. The top section thru the shale rock is challenging but rewarded with an unobstructed 360 view at the top.

Great hike, say a lot of wildlife, moose, deer, elk. Fishing wasn't to great, but what can you expect since it's almost November.

Beautiful country. I've done this hike in segments, the latest being a hike into Farley Lake via Yellowbelly Lake and then a trail run the next day from Farley to Toxaway. Great weather in September and an ideal time to hike the Sawtooths. I also did a scramble off trail part way up Imogene Peak. I don't think it would have been too difficult, time permitting, to summit that one from Farley Lake. Earlier, I've gone from Alturas to Twin Lakes. The Sawtooths are a little slice of heaven on earth. Dogs are leashed during certain times of the year though not too many people follow those rules.

Awesome trail. Great for dogs as there is water easily accessible throughout most of the trail. Even as an out and back (VS the loop) there is plenty to see, including: Beaver dams, Elk nesting areas, plenty of birds and reptiles as well. After the initial 1/2 mile of somewhat technical terrain it turns to a pretty mellow out and back if you stay on Dry Creek at the fork. Foliage is changing and the time to go is ripe!

Great for training with a weighted pack. Not to far, great elevation gain and well maintained trail!!!

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