Bobcat Creek Trail - Wise River
Length: 3.6 miles
Trail Begins: 0.25 mile from end of Lacy Creek Road 90
Trail Ends: Junction with Bobcat Lakes Trail 226
There is a large graveled parking area with a bi-level stock loading ramp, two hitch rails and trail signs at the trailhead. Bobcat lakes are nestled in a high cirque basin on the east side of Bobcat Peak. The lower lake is mostly surrounded by whitebark pine, lodgepole pine, and subalpine fir. The upper two lakes do not contain fish but are very pretty with rocky and beargrass covered slopes. Rising above to the west one can see Bobcat Peak. Two loop hikes are possible by traveling trails that join Bobcat Trail (50). One loop involves hiking Trail 226 to the east down Lambrecht Creek until it joins the Jerked Prairie Road, down the road to the Lacy Creek Road, and back to the trailhead. This loop can be done in a day and will be approximately 10 miles that 2.5 miles will be hiking on roads. The Jerked Prairie Road is a steep road and not recommended for travel except by 4 wheel drive vehicles. This road provides access to private property at Jerked Prairie. There are few turnouts on this road for vehicles to pass when meeting each other. Another possible loop hike is to hike past Upper Bobcat Lake on Trail 226 and over Bobcat Pass to Grassy Lake and Trail 245 about 0.5 mile west of Grassy lake. Upon reaching Trail 245 turn left heading south and hike to the Pioneer Loop Trail 750, turn left again hiking east on Trail 750 past Schwinegar Lake be sure to turn down this trail 0.25 miles east of Schwinegar (at the junction with Trail 758) where the trail heads down Lacy Creek and back to the trailhead. Hiking this loop will take some time and it may be better as an overnight trip or a very long day for those in good physical condition.
The trail starts as a steady climb up a ridge on the south side of Bobcat Creek for the first 2 miles then drops off the north side of the ridge to a bench above the creek where it level out for another mile before climbing sharply a 0.25 mile up a rocky hillside. Before reaching Lower Bobcat Lake, the trail levels out. There are plenty of sites for camping. All campsites are in the timber but the timber is fairly open. Firewood is plentiful. The trail passes through lodgepole pine forest the entire way and offers an occasional view across Bobcat Creek to the ridge on the north side. This is a nice day hike for those not wishing to camp but it is strenuous. The elevation gain is from 6,900 feet to 8,405 feet at lower Bobcat Lake. The trail is closed to ATV use but open to motorcycles. Motorized use of the trail is light, hiking receives moderate use.