Mileage: 8 miles (4 miles one way)
Elevation Gain: 3,700 feet
Major Hike Features: The Scotchman Peak Trail is one of the most popular and well-traveled trails in North Idaho – and for good reason! The summit is the highest point in Bonner County, offering sweeping views of Lake Pend Oreille, the Clark Fork Valley and the Selkirk Mountains. Moreover, mountain goats are abundant on the peak, making this a great hike for wildlife watching.* The hike is very steep, so make sure to give yourself all day to complete the hike. If you start at noon, you probably won’t make it to the top by nightfall!
*If you encounter mountain goats, make sure to keep your distance and keep them away from your food and gear! These wild animals will approach you in search of salt and they can be very dangerous.
Just remember to come prepared. You’ll want to bring:
- Plenty of water. There is no water along the trail and the first two miles are on a mostly exposed and sunny slope.
- Hiking Poles. The trail is very steep with loose rock.
- A map. The trail can be hard to find sometimes.
- Long pants. Overgrown brush and downed trees can be abundant in early summer before our volunteer trail crew clears the path.
- A trowel to do your business. If duty calls on the trail, dig a hole and pack out your toilet paper. There are porta-potties at the trailhead from May – September.
- A bag for your trash. Even sunflower seeds, orange peels, apple cores, and all other compostable waste needs to be packed out to protect this fragile and beautiful ecosystem.
Directions to Trailhead: From Clark Fork, ID, turn North at the Chevron Station. Go past the school and continue up Mosquito Creek Road #276 to the junction of Road #2295. Turn right and go a little over a mile. Watch for signs for Trail #65. Turn left on road #2294. Next, turn left on 2294A. Follow this a little over a mile to where the road ends at the trailhead.
GPS Coordinates: 48.164151, -116.098551