Josephine Lake Trail

Difficulty
This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
Moderate
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.
3-4.5h
Distance
This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
12.2 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.
390 m
User Ratings
These ratings are completed by users who have completed this trail and not subject to reviews by 10Adventures.
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Directions to Trailhead

Reconnect with nature and feel your stress melting away as you hike the scenic Josephine Lake Trail. Yielding a diversity of flora and fauna in addition to wonderful views of the nearby granite crests, this route is quite photogenic, so don’t forget your camera.

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Route Description for Josephine Lake Trail

The Josephine Lake Trail is a beautiful route that explores Idaho’s high country. Wander through the mixed woodlands, montane meadows, and rock gardens up to the crystalline alpine lake. Offering mesmerizing views of the beautiful granite crests along the way, this route is a must-add to your adventure itinerary. Note this is one of the few routes in the area that can be explored year-round with a pair of snowshoes; just be sure to dress warm! Note the road to the trailhead Is rough and rugged, so we walked up along the road from National Forest Development Road 21.

Embark on your journey to Josephine Lake from the National Forest Development Road 21, signposted for ‘Josephine Lake’. Setting out from here, the path will begin to climb through a pine grove. Soon after your departure, the route will cross over Josephine Creek; beyond this point, the tree shade will become increasingly sparse. Mind your footing on the rocky terrain and be wary of passers-by. Eventually, you will reach the true trailhead for Josephine Lake. From here, head south up to the alpine lake.

Stocked with golden trout, Josephine Lake is a popular fishing destination nestled amongst the craggy ridges of Idaho’s mountains. Revel in the picturesque scenery and dip your tired feet in the chilly alpine waters before heading back the way you came to the trailhead.

Getting to the Josephine Lake Trail Trailhead

The Josephine Lake Trail is accessed via National Forest Development Road 21.

Route Information

  • Backcountry Campground

    No

  • When to do

    Year-round

  • Pets allowed

    Yes - On Leash

  • Family friendly

    Yes

  • Route Signage

    Average

  • Crowd Levels

    Moderate

  • Route Type

    Out and back

Josephine Lake Trail Elevation Graph

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