Monday, June 8, 2015

The Crazy Eight and the Waterfall Basin

An Idaho Backcountry Adventure

After a little planning and many discussions, our trip came to fruition! Our goal was to hike to Upper Palisades reservoir and if we had time, check out the waterfalls. Once a waterfall was mentioned, I knew I was going and need to schedule a day off. I spent the couple weeks getting ready; I have accumulated too much gear, and it can take a while to decide what gear to haul 22 miles into the backcountry. With the plan set and the transportation figured out, we were off. Roughly four hours of windshield time and we arrived at the trailhead. It was shortly after 11 am when we hit the trail.

The crazy eight

It sure is nice to see green at this elevation, unlike Utah, it rains quite a bit.

Our fearless leader.

 The midway point to the first lake, and our first break.

One of the many river crossings, there are several nice bridges that helped keep our feet dry.

We took a short break once we hit the first lake, and while taking in that beauty, we noticed a bald eagle circling the lake. Once back on the trail, we saw it again near the end of the lake in it's nest.

The inlet of lower Palisades.

It was a long seven miles to the upper lake, once there, we all set camp as the clouds kept the sun from us and threatened with the imminent showers it carried. We set camp quickly just in case. After a light sprinkling, we gathered some firewood, for the evenings fire. Thankfully, there wasn't any fire restrictions and firewood was easy to find. After a quick dinner, some of us did a little fishing. The lake is full of Cutthroat trout, however you are required to release them immediately, so no trout dinner for us this trip.

The next morning, after breakfast, we hit the trail in search of waterfalls! Our destination was a large basin with three waterfalls and four miles from Upper Palisades. We came across this beautiful pond just before entering waterfall basin.


The first waterfall! The falls appear to come straight out of the side of the mountain.

A very steep climb to the middle section.

Directly across from the first waterfall.
A little closer.

At the end of the basin is a box canyon and this beauty! Still quite a bit of snow, however none of it is on the trail. After a brief visit and some filtered water, we headed back to camp.

A couple more shots of an amazing waterfall!

As you can see, a storm was brewing.

"Rain's a comin' "

On the way out, I ran across this mushroom, I wonder if it tastes like caramel?

About a mile back from camp, the clouds unloaded on us, thankfully just a steady short lived storm. Once back at camp we made dinner and sat by the fire, cementing our new friendships.

The next morning I was up early and took a few pictures.


After a quick breakfast, we packed our wet gear and headed for the trailhead, we left at just after eight. Along the way and just before the lower lake we ran into two moose, this was the best picture I was able to take, they just wouldn't hold still.

We arrived back at the trailhead just after twelve, we weren't in a big hurry and took several breaks to help our sore feet, covering 22 miles in just over 48 hours. It was a great trip and I left with a few pictures and some new friends.

1 comment:

  1. Great synopsis of our wonderful trip! You have some great photos. It was great to finally meet you. :)