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Photo Gallery: Idaho’s White Cloud Mountains

Posted On June 9, 2016 at 10:15 am by / Comments Off on Photo Gallery: Idaho’s White Cloud Mountains

By Michael Lanza

Picture a chain of peaks rising to over 11,000 feet, some composed of chalk-like rock that looks like snow from a distance. Scores of crystal-clear lakes above 9,000 feet, and creeks running with trout and salmon. Mountains goats, elk, bighorn sheep, black bears, even gray wolves. And the kind of solitude you can’t find in most wild lands. That’s the White Cloud Mountains of central Idaho. Put this brand-new American wilderness on your radar—and get there before every other backpacker discovers how gorgeous and quiet it still is, as you’ll see in this photo gallery.

The photos below are from the handful of backpacking trips and one long dayhike I’ve made in the White Clouds, including to Quiet Lake, below the range’s highest peak, 11,815-foot Castle Peak (lead photo, above). I plan to explore them much more; watch for more stories coming up at The Big Outside.

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Meanwhile, see all of my stories about Idaho’s White Cloud Mountains, including one about backpacking with my son into the Big Boulder Lakes, and my story about a 28-mile dayhike two friends and I took through the heart of the range.

If you’re spending an extended period of time in the area, consider back-to-back trips in the White Clouds and neighboring Sawtooth Mountains.


Above Four Lakes Basin, White Cloud Mountains.
Trail 680, Big Boulder Creek.
Quiet Lake and Castle Peak, White Cloud Mountains, Idaho.
Headwall, Scoop, and Hummock Lakes.
Trail 47 below Castle Peak, White Cloud Mountains.
Trail 47 below Castle Peak.
Chamberlain Basin and Castle Peak.
Cove Lake, Big Boulder Lakes.
Sapphire Lake, Big Boulder Lakes.
Unnamed tarn, Big Boulder Lakes.
Below the Big Boulder Lakes, White Cloud Mountains.


Do you like The Big Outside? I’m Michael Lanza, the creator of The Big Outside, recognized as a top outdoors blog by a USA Today Readers Choice poll and others. Subscribe for updates about new stories and free gear giveaways by entering your email address in the box at the bottom of this story, at the top of the left sidebar, or on my About page, and follow my adventures on Facebook and Twitter.

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