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    Independence Lakes Trail

    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.
    12.4 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.
    503 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
    Independence Lakes Trail

    Wonderful views and gorgeous alpine lakes await you along the Independence Lakes Trail. This scenic adventure explores a more remote area of the Sawtooth National Forest in southern Idaho that offers a memorable experience. We love this secluded hike, and we think you likely will, too—that is, if you don’t mind breaking a sweat!

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    Route Description for Independence Lakes Trail

    Immerse yourself in the backcountry and reconnect with nature as you hike the Independence Lakes Trail. This scenic expedition explores a swathe of wilderness occupied by crystalline lakes, aspen groves, sagebrush steppe, and pine stands. This scenic journey is ideal for intermediate hikers and families with older children—just make sure to bring plenty of water! We encourage hikers to dress in layers as insurance against changing conditions and consider wearing SPF. Note the road to the trailhead is rough and rugged, so vehicles with high ground clearance are recommended.

    Your exciting expedition begins from the trailhead off Independence Lake Road. Setting out from here, you will take the southbound path to an intersection. Here, veer left, and you will be diverted onto the Ranger Trail, traveling southeastwardly, contouring the slopes of Mount Independence. After some hiking, you will reach a junction, and turn left onto the Independence Lakes Trail. Alternating through meadows and groves, the path will wind up a collection of switchbacks before reaching the first of the four lakes.

    Admire the scene of the encompassing ridges anchored by Mount Independence and Cache Peak looming above the lake-adorned basin. Explore the lakeshores and dip your tired feet in the chilly alpine waters. When you are ready, head back the way you came to the trailhead.

    Getting to the Independence Lakes Trail Trailhead

    Access this adventure from the trailhead off Independence Lake Road.

    Route Information

    • Backcountry Campground

      Dispersed Camping

    • When to do


    • Pets allowed

      Yes - On Leash

    • Family friendly

      Older Children only

    • Route Signage


    • Crowd Levels


    • Route Type

      Out and back

    Independence Lakes Trail Elevation Graph

    Weather Forecast

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    Independence Lakes Trail Reviews

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