9 Lakes In Idaho That’ll Leave You Speechless (Photos)

If you’re a fan of gorgeous mountain lakes, my do we have a treat for you within this article.

In it we’ll take you on a trip through Idaho, one of the most beautiful states in the US when it comes to mountain wilderness, and some of the most scenic lakes it hides.

From crystal-clear waters nestled in towering mountains to serene spots perfect for fishing and boating, Idaho’s lakes offer something for everyone. 

Let’s explore nine of the most scenic lakes across the state, each with its own unique charm and breathtaking views.

Alice Lake

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Nestled in the Sawtooth Wilderness, Alice Lake is a gem located in central Idaho. 

It’s renowned for its crystal-clear waters and stunning mountainous backdrop. 

A hike to this secluded lake reveals breathtaking vistas of El Capitan and the surrounding peaks. 

Visitors can expect a tranquil setting, ideal for photography, hiking, and overnight camping. 

The journey to Alice Lake is as scenic as the destination, with wildflowers and alpine meadows along the trail.

Sawtooth Lake

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Sawtooth Lake, the largest alpine lake in the Sawtooth National Recreation Area, sits at an elevation of over 8,500 feet. 

This iconic Idaho destination, located near Stanley, offers spectacular views of Mount Regan. 

The lake’s striking blue waters and the rugged Sawtooth Mountains make it a hiker’s paradise. 

The trail to Sawtooth Lake winds through dense forests, past smaller lakes, and opens to panoramic mountain vistas.

Redfish Lake

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Situated at the base of the Sawtooth Mountains near Stanley, Redfish Lake is named for the abundant sockeye salmon that once filled its waters. 

This picturesque lake is a popular destination for boating, swimming, and camping, with the Sawtooth National Forest providing a stunning backdrop. 

The drive to Redfish Lake is scenic, featuring towering mountains and abundant wildlife, making it a must-visit for nature lovers.

Hunt Lake

Credit: Boyd Lusarreta

Tucked away in the northern part of Idaho, Hunt Lake offers a secluded retreat in the Kaniksu National Forest. 

This hidden lake is accessed via a challenging trail, rewarding hikers with pristine waters and untouched wilderness. 

The area is a haven for wildlife, with opportunities for birdwatching and spotting deer or moose. 

The journey to Hunt Lake is an adventure through dense forests and rugged terrain, offering a peaceful escape from the bustling world.

Lake Coeur d’Alene

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Lake Coeur d’Alene, in northern Idaho, is a vast and vibrant lake known for its watersports, luxury resorts, and scenic beauty. 

The lake stretches over 25 miles, offering visitors a plethora of activities from boating to golfing at lakeside courses. 

The Coeur d’Alene Resort, with its famous floating green, is a highlight. 

The surrounding area, with its lush forests and wildlife, makes the lake a year-round destination.

Yellow Belly Lake

Credit: Arianne Hollman

Located in the heart of the Sawtooth Wilderness, Yellow Belly Lake is a serene destination for those looking to escape the crowds. 

This remote lake is accessible via a backcountry trail, offering an immersive nature experience. 

The area is known for its wild beauty, with clear waters, rugged peaks, and dense forests. 

Hikers and campers can enjoy the tranquility of this untouched landscape, with opportunities for fishing and wildlife viewing.

Henrys Lake

Credit: Sarah Paul

Near the Montana border and Yellowstone National Park, Henrys Lake is a high-altitude lake known for its fishing, particularly for trophy trout. 

The lake’s unique geothermal activity contributes to its rich aquatic ecosystem. 

Surrounded by the Centennial Mountains, visitors to Henrys Lake can enjoy stunning landscapes, wildlife viewing, and a variety of water activities in a serene setting.

Lake Pend Oreille

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Idaho’s largest lake, Lake Pend Oreille, is located in the northern part of the state and boasts a depth that rivals that of the Great Lakes. 

Known for its naval testing facilities, the lake also offers recreational opportunities galore, including sailing, fishing, and kayaking. 

The surrounding scenery, characterized by the Selkirk and Cabinet mountains, adds to the lake’s allure, making it a picturesque destination for nature enthusiasts and adventure seekers alike.

Priest Lake

Credit: Chris Morisette

Priest Lake, often referred to as Idaho’s “Crown Jewel,” lies near the Canadian border. 

Surrounded by the Selkirk Mountains, this pristine lake offers crystal-clear waters and sandy beaches. 

The area is a haven for outdoor activities, including hiking, boating, and camping. 

The drive to Priest Lake is notable for its scenic beauty, passing through dense forests and offering glimpses of wildlife. 

It’s a perfect retreat for those seeking tranquility amidst nature’s grandeur.