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Bench Creek

Extremely Difficult

Trail

12.8 mile 20.6 kilometer point to point
Extremely Difficult

Elevation

Ascent: 2,697' 822 m
Descent: -3,148' -959 m
High: 8,636' 2,632 m
Low: 6,763' 2,062 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 9% (5°)
Max Grade: 44% (24°)

Dogs

Off-leash
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Trail shared by Chris Wandervans

A trip into the hidden lakes on this grueling trail.

Chris Wandervans

Features Fall Colors · Lake · River/Creek · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Snowbound until late June or early July.

Description

The Bench Creek trail takes you past two rarely visited lakes, but with solitude also comes a trail that's a little less traveled. There will be some meadow sections where the trail becomes faint. Hiking from Trap Creek you'll have a gradual climb to a high point of the trail before descending more steeply off the backside of the mountain. This trail is a great way to make a loop in between Trap Creek and the Elk Mountain Trail.

The descent off of the first high point is very technical and should be descended knowing that help is a long ways off, so watch those ankles. When you hit the Elk Mountain Trail, you'll continue up Elk Creek. The trail from this point is non-motorized, so it can be very primitive at times and will take you all the way over to Iron Creek. Good route finding is a must in this section since you'll definitely lose sight of the trail in the meadows. Make sure you have up-to-date Idaho data downloaded on the Hiking Project mobile app and use it if you have trouble. You'll be rewarded with some amazing views and great lakes as you work your way along this trail.

The lakes do have fishing, so if you pack in your own fishing rod you can land yourself some large trout.

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Photos, Family Friendly, ADA Accessible, Need to Know, Flora & Fauna

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  4.0 from 1 vote

#13163

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Trail Rankings

#358

in Idaho

#13,163

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192 Since Apr 8, 2015
Extremely Difficult

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