Idaho lake with mountains in the background

How to Hike to the Bench Lakes

How will you make the most of your vacation to Central Idaho? Will you climb one of the Sawtooth’s highest peaks? What about racing down the Salmon River on a whitewater rafting excursion? Or maybe you’ll relax on the shores of our pristine alpine lake. Well, if you’re staying on our property or one of our sister properties, we recommend hiking up to the beautiful Bench Lakes! This scenic route takes you right from the Redfish Lake Lodge through some of the most stunning mountain terrain in the area! 

For more ways to explore the Sawtooth Mountains, request access to our complimentary Adventure Guide!

Hike the Scenic Routes Up to the Bench Lakes

Fishhook Creek Trailhead Ascent to Bench Lakes

The trek to the Bench Lakes begins at the Fishhook Creek Trailhead near our sister property, the Redfish Lake Lodge. Shortly after you begin the 8.2-mile round trip trek, there is a fork in the path. Once you reach this point, take a left and continue over a small creek bridge that leads you along a ridge overlooking the gorgeous western shore of Redfish Lake. Make sure you pack a camera with you, as this is only the first of many incredible photo-worthy views. Continue on the trail until you reach the next fork in the pathway. Once you take a right here, follow this route for a little over a mile until you reach the first of the Bench Lakes.

Redfish Lake Creek Trail Ascent to Bench Lakes

Redfish Lake Trail is another way to reach the Bench Lakes. The best way to begin this hike is taking Redfish Lake boat shuttle across the lake. Take a right onto the trail at the base of the mountain up to the ridge where you’ll eventually meet up with the Bench Lake Trail near the first lake. From there, you can choose how far you want to go! 

Bench Lakes

The Bench Lakes are just a taste of the many incredible places in the Sawtooth Mountains. This series of alpine lakes is a fantastic spot to take in the scenic nature while munching on some snacks by the shore. You can easily hike to the second lake, but we suggest that only experienced climbers should trek beyond the first two. If you have experience hiking and climbing, you should be able to make the trek to the last of the Bench Lakes without too much of a challenge. 

You will not find a marked trail here, so hike with caution, as the terrain becomes very rough and rugged. You can climb beyond this point, but we strongly recommend that you use a local guide for safety reasons.

Mount Heyburn

Mount Heyburn is the ultimate adventurer’s dream if you want to test your technical climbing skills. This challenging journey is full of loose rocks, tricky terrain, steep inclines, and other difficult hiking/climbing areas. We recommend booking a trip with Sawtooth Mountain Guides if you want to climb to the top and soak in stunning views from Stur Chimney.

Discover the Sawtooth Mountains

Triangle C Cabins is your key to the ultimate mountain getaway. Our rustic cabins feature modern amenities that provide you with an authentic and comfortable stay. While there are many incredible adventures waiting for you in the surrounding mountains, our free shuttle service takes you to the Redfish Lake Lodge, where you can enjoy all of our on-site amenities, dining options, and attractions. Don’t forget to browse our Adventure Bundles for quick and easy ways to get out and explore!

a line of Triangle C Cabins in Stanley, Idaho

Start planning your trip by booking one of our cabins! We look forward to welcoming you to Triangle C Cabins!