Crimson Lake, the Jewel of Idaho Backpacking!

Crimson Lake, although it is spectacularly beautiful, and in some of the most picturesque surroundings that Idaho can offer, seems
to be wildly off the backpacking radar. At least part of the reason for that would be that is that is located at the end 11 miles of some
very difficult & challenging hiking. The first thing on the trail that you encounter is a 1.6mi hike over a difficult promontary. Leaving
that section of trail you are deposited down on the level of the river in a burn area for 3.8 miles until the intersection with Cabin
Creek. At that point, you turn north up this creek continuing in a burn area for a considerable time, and crossing Cabin Creek twice
before arriving at the Crimson Creek trail intersection at 3.0mi. At that point the climbing begins in ernest for 2.4mi at somewhere around
7200 feet to the lake at 8330. If the trail, and its frequently ugly footing, was the only issue, that would certainly be bad enough. But
since my last visit in 2017, the frequent blowdowns, and the horrid mess created by the heavy snowpack this past winter with its
subsequent avalanches, have created a trail experience that is tantamount to an endurance test. In spite of the fact that we camped
4 miles in from the TH, we still spent the better part of Day 2 getting to the lake. After the Cabin Creek intersection there is a long
section of blowdown-littered trail, and the trail after the Crimson intersection is just one blowdown after another all the way to the
lake. It is a wonderful lake, and wonderful experience, but you really gotta want to come here to endure the trail in.


Day 1 - Halfway There


Day 2 - Crimson!


Day 3 - Hiking the Cirques


Day 4 - the Trip Out

Contact: The Hiker... or the Goats!