Star Peak Lookout Hike

Difficulty
This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
Hard
Duration
This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
6-8h
Distance
This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
14.9 km
Elevation
This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
1,170 m
User Ratings
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Directions to Trailhead

Hike up to the historic lookout tower above the clouds on the Star Peak Lookout Trail. Reserved for experienced hikers with good endurance and proper equipment, this arduous ascent is no walk in the park—but those who make it to the summit are rewarded with spellbinding vistas.

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Route Description for Star Peak Lookout Hike

Explore the southern end of the famed Cabinet Mountains on the Star Peak Lookout Hike. This demanding day hike is ideal for those seeking a wicked workout—trust us, you’ll break a sweat. Explore mountain meadows blossoming with wildflowers, lush woodlands, and scree fields. As much of the terrain is exposed, it is wise to wear SPF and dress in layers as insurance against varying conditions. It is also recommended to bring a pair of microspikes in the spring as the high-altitude peak will likely be cloaked in snow and ice. While trekking poles are not required, they are very useful—especially on the descent.

Setting out from the trailhead signposted for Trail #999, your journey up to the Star Peak Lookout Tower begins by exploring a swathe of mixed woodlands—traveling northeast. Soon after your departure, you will commence the tireless ascent up the winding path. The seemingly never-ending collection of switchbacks alternates through shaded thickets of pine and exposed meadows that offer great views. Taking breaks as needed and staying hydrated along the way, the terrain will eventually transform into rocky scree– signaling you are nearing the summit.

After an arduous climb, you will eventually crest Star Peak. Explore the rocky summit and tour around the historic lookout tower that overlooks the Gem State and the Treasure State. On a clear day, you will see Lake Pend Oreille, the Fork Clark Valley, and the Cabinet Mountains in the east. Admire the panoramic views, then carefully retrace your steps down the mountainside.

Getting to the Star Peak Lookout Hike Trailhead

The Star Peak Lookout Hike is accessed from Trail #999 off Fatman Road.

Route Information

  • Backcountry Campground

    No

  • When to do

    May-October

  • Pets allowed

    Yes - On Leash

  • Family friendly

    No

  • Route Signage

    Average

  • Crowd Levels

    Low

  • Route Type

    Out and back

Star Peak Lookout Hike Elevation Graph

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