Friday, October 7, 2016

Broad Canyon to Bellas Lakes: July 25th, 2015

Broad Canyon
So I have this hike called the Smyer Challenge and what it consists of doing is the Fall Creek Loop which is roughly 13 miles hitting 5 lakes. The Challenge is that you have to catch a fish out of every lake and complete the loop in 12 hours, trailhead to trailhead. Another Smyer Challenge is hiking Broad Canyon to Bellas and catch a fish out of every lake and do it under 12 hours. Both of these challenges are tough but doable and most of all rewarding. The Broad Canyon to Bellas is about 14 miles and has 6 lakes that have fish in them.
Baptie Lake

Goat Lake

If you're wondering how I was able to complete this challenge, well I will tell you so you can complete it yourself. I parked at the Bellas Lake Trailhead and rode my mountain bike to the Broad Canyon trailhead which was only about 2 miles then I started hiking up the Broad Canyon trail to Baptie Lake. Baptie Lake holds California Goldens which are tough to catch but the fishing is getting better throughout the years and will one day produce the new state record for Idaho. The next lake is Goat, which is the highest lake in Idaho that holds fish, just beating out Lonesome Lake in the White Clouds by a few feet. Goat lake consistently produces 16-inch cutthroat and is actually a great lake for newbie fisherman.
Betty Lake

Not Named Lake

From Goat, you head up over the pass and drop into Betty Lake which holds smaller fish, however, better catch rates. Then from Betty, I headed to Bench, which a great place to catch fish. I had a bet with a friend that I would be able to catch 10 fish in 15 minutes. I lost, I only caught 8 fish in 15 minutes because I had to change my fly a few times.
Betty Lake

Broad Caynon
From Bench, I hiked down to Clear lake, which doesn't hold any fish, and climbed over the ridge and dropped down into the Bellas drainage. Bellas holds 4 lakes but only two have fish in them. North Fork Bellas was my next stop. This lake is pretty cool because it's about 15 feet deep and you can see all the fish in the lake because the water is so clear. Bellas Lake is the last stop and is a great backpacking lake that holds lots of cutthroats that range it different size classes. To finish out the trip I hiked back to my car at Bellas Lake trailhead in just over 11 hours.
Bench Lake

Clear Lake

I have done both of these challenges, Broad Canyon to Bellas and Fall Creek Loop, as enjoyable hikes and it would be interesting to see the time that I could post if I did it competitively.
Not Named Bellas Lake

Not Named Bellas Lake

North Fork Bellas Lake

North Fork Bellas Lake

Bellas Lake

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