Bear Basin Loop Hike
The Bear Basin Loop Hike is a versatile adventure near McCall in the Payette National Forest. Beckoning year-round exploration, this route can be hiked, biked, skied, or snowshoed! Yielding a variety of terrains and incredible views of the Salmon River Mountains, this route is worth a detour into the wilderness.
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Route Description for Bear Basin Loop Hike
The Bear Basin Loop Hike and surrounding routes in the trail system are well-revered. A choice expedition amongst locals and visitors alike, you will likely enjoy company as you hike. Those seeking a more tranquil experience are encouraged to head out in the early morning or in the evening to avoid the afternoon rush. While this route is not overly technical, it is shared with mountain bikers; thus, much of the path is uneven and rocky—so mind your footing and keep your head up for passers-by. Note the mosquitos are relentless, so wear some bug spray!
Get out into the fresh air and reconnect with nature along the Bear Basin Loop. Located within an extensive network of trails, this route is our favorite! No matter the season, you can enjoy the shade of looming spruce and pines interspersed with aspen groves and meadowlands. The lovely hike boasts an enchanting experience, notably when the seasonal wildflowers blossom and butterflies float through the trees. Exhibiting a diversity of flora, this route also exemplifies a variety of flora, including white-tailed deer, moose, bears, birds, and chipmunks.
Your adventure along the Bear Basin Loop begins from the Baby Bear Trailhead. Here you will be confronted with two branches; keep left and begin hiking northwestwardly along the Baby Bear Trail. This lovely path will climb into the grasslands before dipping beneath the tree canopy. Soon after you depart from the trailhead, you will reach an intersection and turn right onto the Sleepy Hollow Trail. Follow this winding route through the mixed woodlands, keeping an eye out for wildlife as you trek. At the following junction, hook onto the Blue Ridge Trail. This path will climb through the ever-changing terrain, offering distant views of the mountains in the east.
Traveling through more shaded terrain, you will be rewarded with the odd patch of wildflowers adorning the forest floor. After some hiking, you will encounter another intersection—take the Upper Drain Trail west, down a precipitous bluff made more manageable by switchbacks. After navigating the vertiginous terrain, you will merge onto the southbound Grand Traverse Trail. At the path’s end, you will briefly merge onto the Mama Bear Road back to the Baby Bear Trail. Turn right and retrace your steps along the Baby Bear Trail back to the trailhead.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long is the Bear Basin Loop?
The Bear Basin Loop is a 6.3 km adventure in the Bear Basin Trail System near McCall, ID.
Are dogs permitted in the Bear Basin Trail System?
Yes, dogs are welcome in the Bear Basin Trail System if they remain on leash.
Insider Hints for Bear Basin Loop Hike
- There are bathrooms located at the trailhead
- Bring plenty of water and wear SPF
- The bugs are relentless, so bring bug spray
- Be mindful of mountain bikers passing by
- Head out in the early morning for more tranquility
- One person in your group should carry bear spray
Getting to the Bear Basin Loop Hike Trailhead
The Bear Basin Loop begins from the trailhead off N Club Hill Blvd.
Bear Basin Loop Hike Elevation Graph
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Bear Basin Loop Hike Reviews
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