Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest
Distance: From trailhead to lake: 1 mile. From Dillon to trailhead: 32 miles
Elevation: 7,880 ft. at trailhead; 7,880 ft. at lake
Maps: Vipond Park Quad (15 min), Mount Tahepia (7.5 min) and Storm peak (7.5 min)
Access from Dillon: Go north on I-15, 12 miles to Apex exit. From Apex, go west on gravel road (Birch Creek Road) about 9 miles to Willow Creek Road. Turn right (north) onto Willow Creek Road, go about 10.5 miles, almost to the end of the road, to Rainbow Lake trailhead. The trail takes off to the right (heading east) in an old clearcut.
Description: Easy walk through lodgepole pine forest; starts out in old clearcut. Rainbow Lake is the largest of a group of small lakes on a bench above Rock Creek. Lake is about 11 acres. Cutthroat Trout can be found in the lake. The trail is closed to motor vehicles. Also close to the Rainbow Lake trailhead are Long Branch Lake and Long Lake. You can hike beyond Rainbow Lake about 2 miles to Lake Agnes.
Distance: From trailhead at Dinner Station Campground to lake: 1.5 miles. From Bond Lake Road to lake: 2.5 miles.
Elevation: 7,132 ft. at Dinner Station Campground; 7,582 ft. at Deerhead lake
Maps: Torrey Mountain Quad (7.5 min)
Access from Dillon: Go north on I-15, 12 miles to Apex exit. From Apex, turn left (west) on gravel Birch Creek Road.
Description: Trail from Dinner Station is steeper, but not as developed as a 4x4 route, like the Bond Lake road. Lake is 16 acres, with cutthroat trout. Trails are open to motor vehicles. Bond Lake route is suitable for motorcycles and ATVs. Dinner Station trail is not suitable for motor vehicles.
Distance: From trailhead to lake: 4 miles. From Dillon to trailhead: 31 miles.
Elevation: 8,000 ft. at trailhead; 9,200 ft. at lake
Maps: Vipond Park Quad (15 min), Mount Tahepia Quad (7.5 min.)
Access from Dillon: Go north on I-15, 12 miles to Apex exit. From Apex, turn left (west) on gravel Birch Creek Road for 9 miles to Willow Creek Road. Turn right (north) onto Willow Creek Road, go about 9.5 miles to trailhead just before the last clearcut. The trail takes off on the left (to west).
Description: Moderate climb through lodgepole pine forest and alpine meadows. Tendoy Lake is in an open, glacial cirque basin with steep talus on the west and south. Mount Alverson, about one mile northwest, is 10,467 feet. Lake is 21 acres, with cutthroat trout.
Distance: From trailhead to lake: 3 miles. From Dillon to trailhead: 38.5 miles.
Elevation: 6,880 ft. at trailhead, 8,511 ft. at lake
Maps: Polaris Quad (15 min.), Elkhorn Hot Springs Quad (7.5 min.)
Access from Dillon: Go south on I-15, take Jackson exit, onto Hwy. 278. Head west on Hwy. 278 about 25 miles, to Polaris Road intersection (a gravel road heading north). Turn right (north) and go 9.5 miles to Clark Creek Road (at Torrey Mtn. Estates). Turn right (east) onto Clark Creek Road, go on through the subdivision, about 2 miles to the trailhead.
Description: Trail climbs steadily from parking area through lodgepole pine forest in granite-boulder terrain. Sawtooth Lake is in a forested basin between Sawtooth Mountain. Goat Mountain Lake is about 16 acres. Brook trout (possibly golden trout, too). The trail is closed to motor vehicles.
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication