Bear River Range Highline Trail

Ovid, Idaho 83254

Bear River Range Highline Trail

Bear River Range Highline Trail Professional Review and Guide

"The Bear River Range, a northern extension of Utah’s famous Wasatch Range, forms the western boundary of the popular Bear Lake Basin. Because the lower slopes of these mountains are crowded with lakeside resorts and recreation homes, it is surprising that so few people hike this range’s scenic trails.

After all, the Bear River Range has plenty of attractions, including view-packed ridges, open forests, and flowered-covered meadows. You’ll find plenty of day hiking options, but for backpackers the best extended trip is the Highline Trail, which samples all of the diverse pleasures this range has to offer."

Nearby Trails

Bear River Range Highline Trail Reviews

4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars
icon3 Total
I can't say enough about the beauty of this trail. Having grown up in the area, I knew the country fairly well, but not from this perspective. The early July wildflowers were absolutely amazing! And considering the warning about mosquitoes, they weren't too unbearable, as long as you kept the repellent on. The most difficult part, by far, is having to haul that large amount of water. It made for a few more rest stops than I usually take, but that just gave me more photo ops! We did see bear tracks, but no scat or other signs. A pair of bald eagles blessed our journey on day 2 (which happened to be July 4th)! The guide I printed form the site here was fairly accurate, but had a couple of sketchy points where we got lost and had to backtrack. Overall, we traveled about 31 miles, instead of 25. No worries, though. Just means more calories burned and more countryside seen! Awesome hike. I highly recommend it!
We entered this trail off of Paris Canyon road 1/2 mile below the pass. While not marked it is fairly obvious where the trail crosses the road. A decent hike to the ridgeline from there--beautiful view and you can go as far as you want on the Highline trail
I took my scout troop and three adult leaders on a hike from the Dry Basin/Highline Trail junction to Willow Flats Campground. We went up the Dry Basin Jeep Road (more a trail than a road) to the Highline Trail. This approach was much more scenic than going from Emigration Campground up the road to Copenhagen Basin. The view from the ridge at the head of Mink Creek was spectacular and this is not seen if you go up from Emigration Campground. Also, there is a surprising amount of four wheeler, truck, and jeep traffic on the Emigration Campground route. There were no motorized vehicles on the Dry Basin approach. I was surprised at how much up and down topography there was for what I incorrectly thought was a ridgeline hike. The Highline Trail actually is not a ridgeline hike but more of a high elevation hike along but below the crest of the Bear River Range. We stopped at Horseshoe Basin and camped the first night and spent the second night at Bloomington Lake. It was fun swimming in the lake to cool off and to wash off the trail dust. The trail's scenery is very nice and the wildflowers are prolific and beautiful. On the third day we climbed back up to the Highline Trail from Bloomington Lake then turned downhill at the junction of the Highline Trail and the Willow Flats Trail. The trail down to Willow Flats campground was steep and gave me a good case of "noodle legs". But the cold watermelon waiting for us at the campground made up for that final downhill stretch. All in all a fun, uncrowded hike.

Bear River Range Highline Trail Photos

Help others discover amazing sights!

Trail Information

Nearby City
2,800 feet
Elevation Gain
Trail Type
Skill Level
3 -4 days
Usually open late June to October; Best late June to mid-July for flowers; late September and early October for fall colors
Montpelier Ranger District, 208-847-0375
Local Contacts
USGS Egan Basin, USGS Midnight Mountain, USGS Paris Peak
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Jul 2018