Mileage: 11.5-mile round trip 

Difficulty: Hard

Elevation Gain: 3,500 feet 

Major Hike Features: If you’re up for a workout, East Fork Trail will reward your efforts with some beautiful views and spectacular nature. Along the way you’ll find river crossings, loose stones, diverse wildlife including bears, huckleberries and more. Come prepared for a long haul and with appropriate safety equipment like bear spray. Toward the top you’ll come across an abandoned lookout tower. 

Just remember to come prepared. You’ll want to bring:

  • Plenty of water. After crossing the East Fork, you won’t find any more water, and the first two miles is on a mostly exposed and sunny slope. 
  • Hiking Poles. The trail is steep with loose rock. 
  • A map. The trail can be hard to find sometimes. 
  • Long pants. Overgrown brush, downed trees, can be abundant in early summer before our volunteer trail crew clears the path. 
  • A trowel to do your business and a bag for your trash. There is no bathroom at the trailhead so you’ll have to bury your business and pack out your toilet paper. 

Getting to the Trailhead: Drive from Clark Fork, Idaho, up LIghtning Creek Road about eight miles, turning east onto Road #1084. Continue about .9 miles to a creekside campsite, where you can cross the creek and head uphill to an old logging road. Follow that road uphill until it turns into trail #563. 

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