Best destinations in the USA

The Eighteen Lake


2.7 M EASY

LENGTH 2.7 miles TIME 1:30


Easy Easy

A U.S. Forest Service hiking sheet is available at the district ranger’s office in Tofte. USGS quad: Sawbill Landing. No permit is required.

GETTING THERE Turn right off Country State Highway onto U.S. Forest Road 172 at Isabella. In 0.8 mile, turn left onto U.S. Forest Road 369 and continue to Eighteen Lake Campground on the left in 1.6 miles. The trailhead is located at the parking lot near the boat ramp.

TRAILHEAD GPS 47° 38′ 37.9* N 91c 20′ 38.8″ W

The Eighteen Lake Hiking Trail is an easy lake-side hike with several benches along the way for resting and viewing. Large pines tower over a variety of forest types, from mature mixed-conifer to dense stands of young softwoods. A diversity of wildlife takes advantage of these forest types. Woodpeckers excavate large holes in the trunks of dead tree snags and stumps looking for insects, and beaver gnaw on the softwood trees in the quest for construction materials and food. Belted Kingfishers flash along the shore making the lake echo with their distinctive rattlelike call. Openings in the canopy above the trail create sunny spots where a garter snake may lay soaking up a few rays to raise its temperature to an operating level. Pellets, with a diameter about the size of a quarter, litter the trail in scattered piles attesting to the presence of the elusive moose.

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