Backpack to Highland Lake



16 miles

Elevation Gain

1500 ft

Route Type


Added by Isaac Parsons

Take in the amazing view from the surprisingly sandy beach on the Eastern edge of the Lake!

To get to Little Goose Trailhead take Red Grade Rd. west out of the little town on Bighorn for about 10 miles, then keep your eye out for FS Rd. 314 on the left, this you will follow until the road will eventually dead-end at the trailhead. There are a couple creek crossings and the road is pretty intense in some places, so 4WD would be recommended.  (Here is a Link from Bighorn to the trailhead.)

Once you get to Trail #27 it will be a 3.4 mile hike until a fork with the next marked trail, there is a split in the trail about a mile and a half from the trailhead, stick to the right. The trail will follow a draw up for the 3.4 miles until it reaches a ridge top and connects with trail #38. Head east on trail #38. After about 2 miles you will come to Highland Park (wide open high country plain) with great views of Hacksaw Ridge, Mount Woolsey, and Blacktooth Mountain all to the south. From here the trail does split but it is hard to see the split ( one way goes SE the other is more south almost directly toward Blacktooth Mountain) stay on the South trial going nearly straight to Blacktooth Mountain, it is a more direct way to get there. From Highland Park, it is about another 2 miles down to Highland Lake, the last 1/2 mile is a bit steeper, make sure to take your time so you don't roll an ankle or anything. 

Once down at Highland Lake there are numerous places to pitch a tent, and most likely there will not be many or any other people around. There are remnants of campfire rings, but they are not allowed because at the elevation of the lake you're above the 9,250 ft boundary for backcountry fires.

When at the lake there are lots of different things to see and do. Relax, fish, there are bunches of brook trout and if you are fly fishing then it should be pretty simple to catch some, you can hike around the lake, sight see, photograph wildlife, then if you are feeling even more adventurous go for the summit of Blacktooth Mountian. I will have a post of how to get to Blacktooth eventually. 

Read More

Know for




Leave a Review

Perfect Adventure

Beautiful description, made me feel like I was there! I just moved to Wyoming recently and all I want to do is finally hike these mountains. Reading this will help me get through the long winter and then I'll finally see this place for myself.

47 total saves


Leave No Trace

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on.

Nearby Adventures

Summit Blacktooth Mountain

24 mi / 4000 ft gain

Backpack to Robin Lake

12 mi / 1500 ft gain

Hike to Rainbow Lake in the Cloud Peak Wilderness

Hike Soldier Ridge Trail

8.2 mi
More Nearby Adventures