Hike the Harrison to Beehive Lake Lower Traverse
Rate this Adventure Idaho › Harrison Lake Trailhead
Added by Bryan Carroll
Nestled in the lower Selkirks, this traverse is a great area to practice some easy navigation/route finding with some added benefit of great views and beautiful lakes to camp at!
You will follow the Pack River Road no. 231 for about 21 miles until you reach the trailhead. For this loop, you have a few options: Leave your car at the Beehive Lake trailhead and walk to Harrison Lake trailhead so when you are done you can jump right in the car, leave your car at the Harrison Lake TH and have to walk the extra mile or two at the end of your hike, or if you are bringing multiple cars, leave one at each TH.
Start by going up the Harrison Lake Trail, which overall is a very moderate hike. Follow it 2.3 miles to the lake. Take some photos, enjoy the serene area, but don't take too much time because you have a lot of ground left to cover! Backtrack about 1/2 a mile until you reach the granite slabs. Pick your way South along the granite slabs and bushes until the area opens up and you can see the upper ridgelines. Your goal is to follow the direction of the ridgeline as much as possible because that will take you the same direction as Beehive Lake. You will weave your way through brush, back out onto the granite, and back into the forest many times (be careful in areas with deep foliage as there are Grizzlies around). You will come to a pass where you will climb about 400'. Just to the top of that, there is a great lookout to see the lake on the other side.
Don't be fooled by the lake you see. If you don't have a map, you may think this is Beehive, but the reality is this is Little Harrison Lake. The lookout is a great place to grab a quick bite to eat and assess the route you want to take. You will drop 500' into the little valley. Make your way South through this granite field until you reach the slopes of The Sisters. You have a couple options, you can either go Southwest and climb up and over the pass (another 500' climb) or you can skirt Southeast and only climb about 50' in elevation and be poised directly above Beehive. Either way you go, you will drop down to Beehive lake (6,457'). Campsites are hard to find close to the lake due to some rock slides covering a couple of the sides. The Northeast end of the lake has some well-made campsites along with a bear box that you could stuff your food. This side is also close to the trail for heading back down to the Beehive Lake TH. Another great camping spot is on the West side of the lake, which is where the above photo was taken!
Make sure your food is secured for the evening (use the bear box if possible) because this area does have grizzlies and the last thing you want is to wake up to a bear tearing into your goods! Take the trail North and East from the lake to bring you back down to the trailhead!
-Tent -Stove -Sleeping Bag -Bug Spray -Compass -Map -Food -First Aid Kit -Bear Spray (or alternative)
Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.
Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More
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