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Pole Canyon

The Pole Canyon hiking trail descending toward Pole Canyon in the Snake River Mountains. Caribou-Targhee National Forest, Idaho

Pole Canyon is a strenuous 3.1 mile (one way) hike in the northern Snake River Mountains that reaches an exposed ridge, providing stunning views of Teton Valley and the nearby Teton Mountains. The trail sees multiple uses, but solitude can still be enjoyed, particularly outside of busier times.

Pole Canyon Trail Description

From the Pole Canyon trailhead, the trail begins a deceptively modest ascent south and into the old forest. In less than a mile, the trail will become notoriously steep, and it doesn’t let up. Despite the ascent, the woods are quite tranquil and beautiful, and several creek crossings help to keep the climb from becoming too monotonous. The trail is also straight-forward and easy to follow, allowing you to focus on the climb.

As you near the top, switchbacks will make the steep climb even steeper. Soon the trees begin to fade away as you reach a stunning ridgeline with incredible panoramic views. To the south, the Snake River Mountains continue to expand and dominate the horizon. To the east the mighty Teton Range rises high. To the west the Bighole Mountains recede into the Snake River Plain and Teton Valley to the north.

Enjoy this well-earned view for as long as you’d like, and when ready, you can head down the same way you came up.

Victor, Idaho in Teton Valley
The town of Victor, Idaho nestled in Teton Valley below the Snake River Mountains and the Teton Mountains in the distance. Caribou-Targhee National Forest, Idaho

Getting There

From the main stoplight in Victor, Idaho, head west on Highway 31 for 0.5 miles. Turn left onto S 1000 W and follow that for 2.75 miles where the road will dead-end at the Pole Canyon Trailhead.

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Mike@FreeRoamingPhotography.com