This loop passes countless alpine lakes and takes you up into the high country just outside of McCall. If you have done the Loon Lake Loop and found it too easy, then this loop will be just perfect for someone looking for more challenge and better scenery.
Can be snowbound until July.
Need to Know
This is a remote backcountry ride where you'll likely only see people on the road, so any group will need to be self-sufficient.
The ride begins at the Kennally Creek Campground due to the large parking lot located at the trailhead for the North Fork Kennally Creek
. You can begin the ride at any point along the dirt road if you want to save some dirt road driving.
From the campground, you'll have about 6 miles of dirt road riding with nothing very steep or challenging. You'll start on FS388 and pass numerable spur roads before coming to the turn for FS390. Once on FS390 you'll climb up along Rapid Creek to the beginning of the Paddy Flat/Lake Fork Creek
The Paddy Flat/Lake Fork Creek
Trail starts at the end of the road and climbs gradually at first and takes you through some thick woods and boggy sections. Luckily, there are some bridges over the muck. As the trail climbs, it will dry and smooth out. There are a couple of steep climbs that mellow out afterwards. From there, you'll have one final steep climb into the basin before seeing Boulder Lake. Boulder Lake has excellent fishing and swimming and is worth the short trip down.
At the end of Paddy Flat/Lake Fork Creek
Trail, you'll turn onto the North Fork Kennally Creek
. From the junction, the trail climbs through open meadows into an alpine area. The tree cover thins out as you climb away from Boulder Lake and into another Lake Basin. As you climb, you'll pass a number of creeks and small lakes. There may be a smattering of fish depending on the year if you want to try some fishing. There are also some side trails to lakes if you feel like seeing all of them. The climbing will vary in difficulty until you reach a summit after a last hard stretch.
From here, the trail will descend to a bench area before descending through a number of steep switchbacks. At the end of the steep switchbacks, the trail mellows. Now it is a gradual descent to the road, but a very long descent. This last area can be buggy if you stop and keep and eye out for moose on the trail.