Idaho’s Sawtooth Wilderness: Fishhook Creek Meadows

Peaceful mountain stream and meadows with jagged Sawtooth peaks Distance: 4.5 miles roundtrip Type: out and back Difficulty: easy with little elevation change Best season: summer and fall In September 2018, we returned to Idaho’s Sawtooth Mountains for a week of day hiking and backpacking. The big ticket item for this trip was a four …

Idaho’s Sawtooth Wilderness Backpack Day 3: Alpine Lake to Crammer Lakes

Day three of our September 2018 Sawtooth Wilderness backpack (click here for day 1 and here for day 2). As usual, we were up early and were able to enjoy some star gazing while we had our coffee. The thing about backpacking in September is you really notice that the days are getting shorter! It …

Idaho’s Sawtooth Wilderness Backpack Day 2: Alpine Lake to Baron Lakes

Day two of our September 2018 Sawtooth Wilderness backpack (click here for day one). We rolled out of the tent at 6:30. It was still dark, but we could see faint light on the horizon. We had anticipated temperatures in the 20’s, so we were happy to see a balmy 30 degrees. We had coffee and …

Idaho’s Sawtooth Wilderness Backpack Day 1: Redfish Lake to Alpine Lake

Stunning lakes with towering mountain peaks on this Sawtooth Wilderness backpack Distance: 26.5 miles roundtrip plus boat shuttle Type: Y shaped out and back Difficulty: moderate with 4,400′ elevation gain Best season: July – September Nothing beats Idaho’s Sawtooth Wilderness in September. The bulk of the tourists have moved on, bugs are gone, fall colors …

Idaho’s Smoky Mountains: Miner-Prairie Lakes Loop, Sept 2017

Lovely pair of high mountain lakes in Idaho’s Smoky Mountains Distance: 10.8 miles roundtrip Type: lollipop Difficulty: moderately difficult with 1,600′ elevation gain (the section up to Miner Lake is relatively steep and rocky with blow downs to navigate over) Best season: summer and early fall Miner Lake, Smoky Mountains Day two of our Labor …

Idaho’s Hemingway-Boulders Wilderness: North Fork Big Wood River, Sept 2017

Pretty stream and impressive views in the new Hemingway-Boulders Wilderness Distance: 8.0 miles roundtrip Type: out and back Difficulty: moderate with 1,100′ elevation gain Best season: summer and fall (I suspect the wildflowers are spectacular in July) Smoky Septembers seem to be the new normal in the Pacific Northwest. Even when our area isn’t having …

Idaho’s White Cloud Wilderness: Island Lake, Sept 2015

Ambitious day hike to a rugged and beautiful high mountain lake in the newly designated White Cloud Wilderness. Distance: 13.0 miles round trip (including exploration at the lake) Difficulty: difficult with ~2,700′ elevation gain over rocky trail Best season: August and September It had been a wonderful vacation in Idaho’s Sawtooth and White Cloud Wilderness …