Snow Lake

North Bend, Washington

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2 Reviews
4 out of 5
If there’s such a thing as a wilderness superhighway, this is it. The Snow Lake Trail is Washington’s most heavily used trail within a designated wilderness area. On any given summer weekend, you can expect to share the area with upward of two hundred hikers. Fortunately, midweek the route is virtually deserted, and after Labor Day the number of weekend hikers drops to more reasonable levels. Why is it so popular? It’s a combination of easy-to-access wilderness trail and a route to one of the most picturesque lakes in the water-rich Alpine Lakes Wilderness. Snow Lake is surrounded by high granite peaks and is visited by deer, mountain goats, and a host of small critters and birds. What’s more, the lakeshores are lined with wildflowers in early summer and juicy huckleberries later in the year. All in all, the crowds are justified—few places that are so easy to reach offer such a stunning wilderness experience.
Day Hiking: Snoqualmie Region

DESCRIPTION FROM:

Day Hiking: Snoqualmie Region

by Dan A. Nelson (The Mountaineers Books)

If there’s such a thing as a wilderness superhighway, this is it. The Snow Lake Trail is Washington’s most heavily used trail within a designated wilderness area. On any given summer weekend, you can expect to share the area with upward of two hundred hikers. Fortunately, midweek the route is virtually deserted, and after Labor Day the number of weekend hikers drops to more reasonable levels. Why is it so popular?

It’s a combination of easy-to-access wilderness trail and a route to one of the most picturesque lakes in the water-rich Alpine Lakes Wilderness. Snow Lake is surrounded by high granite peaks and is visited by deer, mountain goats, and a host of small critters and birds. What’s more, the lakeshores are lined with wildflowers in early summer and juicy huckleberries later in the year. All in all, the crowds are justified—few places that are so easy to reach offer such a stunning wilderness experience.

© 2014 Dan A. Nelson/The Mountaineers Books. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Fishing, Hiking
Nearby City: North Bend
Distance: 6
Elevation Gain: 1,400 feet
Trail Type: Out-and-back
Access: Moderate
Season & Limits: July–Oct
Features: Wildflowers
Accessibility: Kid-friendly
Local Contacts: Mount Baker–Snoqualmie National Forest, Snoqualmie Ranger District, North Bend office
Local Maps: Green Trails Snoqualmie Pass Gateway No. 207S
Driving Directions: Directions to Snow Lake

Recent Trail Reviews

9/26/2009
0

This is indeed an alpine super highway. th payoff is worth every step. On a clear day the views of the surrounding peaks and ridges are unsurpassed. We started out early, (7:30 AM) and had the trail in to ourselves. We saw Grouse and a Red Headed Woodpecker having breakfast. The ponds and meadows off the beaten path were secluded and full of ripe huckleberries. Signs of deer and bear were abundant. The lake is a gem, the mountains inspiring, the air sweet. On the trip out we passed many people walking in to where we had just been. Being able to encourage them in the effort capped off a completely wonderful morning's hike.


8/9/2009
0

Fun hike. Too many people. We arrived early and there weren't too many people at the trailhead. There were quite a few campsites set up around the lake. A handful of people were swimming. We hiked halfway to Gem Lake before turning around. We left the lake around 1 PM and passed many many many more hikers on the way down. This made the switchbacks a bit harder having to pass a party about every 20 yards. Go early or on a week day to avoid the crowds!



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