Stay in the area long enough and you will hear a lot about Lookouts to visit. Our latest Blog I will feature a few, some I’ve had the pleasure to visit personally, and a few you can actually rent to stay in for a few days! How fun would it be to stay in a Lookout!
A bit of History on Castle Butte Lookout; It was originally built in 1916 and then later replaced in 1928. Finally, in 1950, it was made into a lookout. It sits atop a rocky point, 6659 feet above sea level. It has beautiful panoramic views of the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness, the Seven Devils, the Great Burn Area, and the North Fork of the Clearwater drainage. It’s a few miles off of the Lolo Motorway. Castle Butte Lookout is one of those that you can rent by reservation. For only $45 dollars a night you can reserve this in the summer. It has a 4 person limit, lights and a heater, also a propane stove for cooking on. Whatever you pack in you need to pack out as there is no garbage service. You also need to bring water and your own food and supplies. There is a pit toilet (it’s brand new) on site and the closest town is Lowell Idaho. To rent the lookout visit Castle Butte on www.Recreation.gov or call 1-877-444-6777.
Weitas Butte Lookout was built in 1931 and was later rebuilt in 1953. It is on the Lolo Motorway just three miles from Rocky Ridge Lake. Weitas also has great views of the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness. It sleeps up to four guests, includes a wood stove, and propane heater. To Rent Weitas call the North Fork Ranger District at 208-476-4541
Lookout Butte Lookout has a nearly 80 year history and has been home to three towers. The first of which was built in 1923. It was 45 feet tall with only a platform to stand on! A cabin was put on the tower a few years later. In 1935 a 50 foot tower was built, then another one in 1962. A new 60 foot tower was built beside the old one from 1962 and is currently still standing. The Lookout sits at 5,869 feet elevation with views of the Selway Crags, the Seven Devils, Coolwater Ridge, Pilot Knob and Lochsa and Selway River Drainages. It is also available to rent. It has panoramic views all along the catwalk. The lookout has room for up to four people and comes with two twin beds and two cots. Amenities are a propane stove and oven, a table and chairs, a broom,bucket and mop. A pit toilet below along with a fire ring near the base of the tower. You are to bring your own water, food, sleeping bags, cookware, utensils etc. Be prepared to haul your supplies up five flights of stairs! Check out www.recreation.gov to see about renting Lookout Butte.
Pilot Knob Lookout is 14 miles out of Elk City Idaho. It was originally built in 1922 and was just a 10×10 frame cabin. In 1939 the 10 foot lookout that is presently there was built. It is staffed every summer.
Hells Half Acre Lookout was built in 1960 and is at 8116 feet in elevation and is on an unpaved road; you are required to have a 4 wheel drive vehicle to drive up to it. The road to the summit is a one way trail and pretty steep so be prepared to make a climb! It is coined as the ultimate 4 wheel drive destination, great for all those 4 wheel enthusiasts!
Burnt Knob Lookout is definitely not for the faint of heart! Located off the Magruder Corridor Road. You will need a 4 wheel drive vehicle to get to it. The view, however is amazing! Having personally gone up to the lookout I can say it is worth the scary drive for sure! It sits atop a granite knob and there is a sheer drop off to the Burnt Knob Lake below. It is unmanned and pretty old and rustic but that is part of its charm. The road to it is narrow so you may meet people coming out and need to pull over for each other.
Corral Hill Lookout was first built in 1929 and then replaced in 1953. It is 40 feet tall. It is still in use and staffed by someone all summer. Enjoy a beautiful drive to get to this one as it is not as treacherous and some lookouts. It is only 14 miles from Grangville.
These are just a few lookouts out there in our area to trek to. A quick Google search will show you there are MANY lookouts in the great state of Idaho. Such a fun way to spend a summer, plotting out the drive to each lookout and camping along the way. I highly recommend it! My husband has had many adventures to all of these lookouts and more. Thanks to him for providing a few of the pictures for me to use 🙂 Get out there and explore Idaho so much to see!
I’m including an extensive list of lookouts in Idaho from the Nez Perce National Forest go check it out!