Lower Palisades Lake, Swan Valley Idaho
The four mile hike up to Lower Palisades Lake provide some of the best mountain views in the Swan Valley region. Palisades Creek Trail is well maintained and can be used only by hikers, backpackers or horses as it is in the Palisades wilderness study area.
Lower Palisades Lake was formed when a giant landslide came down the canyon and dammed the creek. Palisades Canyon is thickly forested with fir, aspen and willow. It is a canon of steep magnificent cliffs. The Lower Palisades Lake is much smaller than the Upper Palisades Lake and because of its proximity receives most of the traffic. Lower Palisades Lake provides good fishing also.
Moose frequent the area as well as elk, deer and mountain goats, there are plenty of bear and mountain lions but it is rare to see them. If you scan the mountain walls you may see mountain goats if you get lucky. I've gotten lucky four times.
From Idaho Falls drive southeast from Swan Valley on U.S. Highway 26 to Irwin. Turn left on the Palisades Creek Road at the sign for Palisades Creek Campground. Follow this road for 1.5 miles. Just before the campground and the bridge that crosses the creek is a parking area. On the other side of the creek to the right is a horse staging area. The new trailhead is at the horse staging area. If you are coming from the Wyoming side, Palisades Creek Road is about 2 miles north of Palisades reservoir dam on the right.