OverviewLocated just south of the Canadian border in NW Montana's Whitefish Range lies the Ten Lakes Scenic Area. This remote hiking/backpacking area offers 89 miles of trails within it's 15,700 acres. There are many alpine lakes, several named peaks, and several other un-named points that provide the hiker/climber with many destinations from which to choose.
Ksanka Peak is located in the southwest portion of the Ten Lakes Area. At 7488', Ksanka is not the highest peak in the area, but it's rugged beauty is sure to capture your attention. Once viewed from the saddle of Point 7448 (the major obstacle to Ksanka's summit) and Point 7417, it certainly instilled in us a heightened desire to scramble up the inviting NE ridge.
Other peaks of note in the Ten Lakes Scenic Area of the Whitefish Range include the following: Poorman Mountain, Green Mountain, Mount Wam, Stahl Peak, St. Clair Peak, Mount Gibralter, and Independence Peak.
|Terrain||One-Way Mileage||Elevation Gain|
|Trail #83||2.32||1150'||Trail #339||.15||25'||Trail #340 to first saddle||.52||387'||Off-trail to Point 7448 summit||.15||209'||Descent to Ksanka saddle||.15||-299'||Ksanka's NE ridge to summit||.29||328'||Total||3.58||2099'|
Camping and RedTapeKsanka Peak is located in the Kootenai National Forest which is bear country. Don't hike alone, make noise as you hike, and carry bear spray and know how to use it. We did not see any bear sign on Ksanka Peak, but the Whitefish Range is chock full of healthy-sized black bears and the occasional grizzly.
There is no water available on this hike after Paradise Lake. A map of the Kootenai National Forest and the Rexford/Fortine Ranger District is helpful in negotiating the many Forest Service Roads. Bug repellent is an absolute necessity in Montana in June, July and August. No ticks were seen on this hike.
The closest campground is at Little Therriault Lake.