Five Lakes Butte Hike

This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
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.
This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
12.1 km
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.
498 m
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Directions to Trailhead

The Five Lakes Butte Hike is a gorgeous adventure in the Clearwater National Forest that boasts unrivaled scenery of the mountainous landscape and adorning lakes. While this route is no walk in the park, the beauty negates the sweat.

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Route Description for Five Lakes Butte Hike

Indulge in the beauty of not one but five alpine lakes along the Five Lakes Butte Hike. This demanding adventure will push your limits but in a good way! Much of the terrain is rocky and uneven, so a sturdy pair of footwear with solid traction is necessary! Additionally, as much of the path is exposed, we encourage you to dress in layers as insurance against changing conditions. Note that the road to the trailhead is rough and rugged, so a vehicle with high ground clearance is necessary!

Setting out from the trailhead, you will be guided westwardly along the Saint Joe Divide Trail. From here, the path will gradually climb through a swathe of wilderness occupied by towering pines. The higher you ascend into the high country, the more exposed the terrain becomes. After some hiking, you will pass Tin Lake and Copper Lake. The subsequent few lakes you will pass are Silver Lake and Gold Lake. From here, the path will more intensely climb up the slopes of Five Lakes Butte.

Using the trail GPS or simply the worn path, turn around and ascend the ridge beneath the peak. Revel in the mountainous scenery and the lakes below, including Platinum Lake in the southeast. Reconnect with the Saint Joe Divide Trail and retrace your steps back down to the trailhead.

Getting to the Five Lakes Butte Hike Trailhead

Access this hike from the Saint Joe Divide Trailhead off Pot Mountain Ridge Road.

Route Information

  • Backcountry Campground


  • When to do


  • Pets allowed

    Yes - On Leash

  • Family friendly

    Older Children only

  • Route Signage


  • Crowd Levels


  • Route Type


Five Lakes Butte Hike Elevation Graph

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Five Lakes Butte Hike Reviews

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