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Hike of the Month

The Idaho Trails Association would like to introduce a new monthly update on hiking and snowshoeing trails around Idaho. We’re grateful to be able to utilize materials from Hiking Idaho and other resources. Scott Marchant envisioned a mission for Hiking Idaho to publish guidebooks that make available accurate and inspiring backcountry information. Visit hikingidaho.com to learn more.

Hikes and snowshoes will be posted by the suggested month. This is just a general guideline however as many of the hikes can be utilized outside of the specific month.

Beehive Lakes

Description

Climb through lush forests, of cedar, hemlock, alpine fir, and spruce to the beautiful Beehive Lakes, tucked into a high cirque basin in the Selkirk Crest.  Hikers are rewarded with views of Roman Nose, The Beehive, Pack River, and Twin Peaks.  Options for scrambles to the top of the Crest are also available, where even more spectacular views can be found.

The trail begins on the east side of the upper Pack River and immediately crosses it.  From the river, the trail ascends the hillside following gentle switchbacks.  Views improve with every mile.  Bottleneck Peak, Roman Nose, and The Beehive come into view.  At approximately 4 miles, the trail reaches large slabs of granite outcroppings.  Follow the cairns over the slabs to the upper lake.

There are grizzly bears in the Selkirk Mountains.  Hikers are advised to take special precautions to avoid negative encounters with bears.  The Forest Service installed a bear-proof food storage locker at the upper lake, where overnight campers may store their food.

Distance

4.5 miles (one way)

Elevation Gain

2,040 feet

Directions

From Sandpoint, drive north on U.S. Highway 95 for 10.5 miles, and turn left (west) onto the Pack River Road at Samuels.  Drive 19 miles, following Forest Service signs toward Beehive Lakes, and turn left, driving a short distance off the main road to the trailhead.

Maps

Forest Service: Kaniksu National Forest

USGS Quad(s): The Wigwams, Roman Nose

Maintenance Report

ITA partnered with the Sandpoint Ranger District to brush out the Beehive Lakes Trail in August of 2011.  In 2009, the Forest Service installed a new trail bridge across the Pack River.

Land Status

The Selkirk Crest is a proposed wilderness area.

Guidebooks

100 Hikes in the Inland Northwest by Rich Landers (2nd Edition, 2003)

Trails of the Wild Selkirks by Dennis Nicholls (2004)

 

Scotchman Peak

Description

Stunning views of Lake Pend Oreille, the Cabinet Mountains, and the Selkirk Mountains await you on top of Bonner County’s tallest peak. Hikers will likely find company at the top, where mountain goats negotiate rock outcroppings and steep cliffs.

From the trailhead, the route begins relentlessly uphill for the first mile until reaching the first set of switchbacks.  At that point, the grade becomes more bearable. About two-thirds of the way up, the trail passes through a large hillside meadow, with stunning views of Lake Pend Orielle and the Clark Fork River Valley.  The trail eventually intercepts the ridge and follows it to the summit.  Follow cairns and other indicators through the talus.

The Scotchman Peaks are inhabited by grizzly bears and mountain goats.  Hikers are advised to take special precautions to reduce the risk of negative bear encounters.  Please do not feed the mountain goats or any other wild animals.  Feeding wild animals may result in serious injury or death.

Distance

3.5 miles (one way)

Elevation Gain

3,700 feet

Directions

Take Highway 200 (east from Sandpoint) and in downtown Clark Fork turn north at the Chevron Station.  Go past the school and continue up Mosquito Creek Road #276.  Go past the (former) Clark Fork Field Campus to the junction of Road #2294.  Turn right and go a little over a mile.  Watch for signs for trail #65. Turn left on road 2294A.  Follow this road a little over a mile to where it ends at the trailhead.

Maps

Forest Service: Kaniksu National Forest

USGS Quad(s): Clark Fork NE

Maintenance Report

No information.

Land Status

The Scotchman Peaks are a proposed wilderness area.

Guidebooks

100 Hikes in the Inland Northwest by Rich Landers (2nd Edition, 2003)

Trails of the Wild Cabinets By Dennis Nicholls with Jim Mellen (2nd Edition, 2008)