Lake of the Angels

Hoodsport, Washington 98548

Lake of the Angels

Lake of the Angels Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"Cupped in a high cirque on snowy, craggy Mount Skokomish, Lake of the Angels in the Valley of Heaven is one of the prettiest alpine lakes in the Olympics. But reaching this divine destination first requires a passage through hell.

The trail was laid out by climbers—it’s brutally steep and requires use of hands in one short section going over a headwall. It’s not dangerous, but hikers skittish on ledges may want to opt for another trail. For those who work hard to get to this celestial setting, expect one of the most dramatic backdrops in the Olympics as your reward.

Dogs are prohibited at park boundary."

More Lake of the Angels Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

One Night Wilderness: Portland: Backcountry Getaways Within Three Hours of the City (Wilderness Press)
Doug Lorain
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"Although relatively short, this is a steep and challenging hike that takes you to a wonderfully scenic little alpine lake high in the Olympic Mountains. In addition to being a great destination in itself, the lake is a fine place to set up a base camp for explorations of the surrounding mountains. Due to the steepness and exposure of this route, those who are afraid of heights should not attempt this hike. Boots with good traction are a must, especially if conditions are wet." Read more
Hiking through History Washington (Falcon Guides)
Nathan and Jeremy Barnes
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"Challenge yourself on this 7.0-mile hike into a less-traveled portion of the Olympic National Park. This route, the Carl Putvin Trail #813, is the most direct and frequently used approach to the Lake of the Angels. From the trailhead the route immediately plunges into the trees, following Boulder Creek up past Putvin’s grave and winding past ancient moss-covered boulders. Here a forest of pine and hemlock rises out of a thick layer of salal and huckleberry, occasionally thinning to allow glimpses of Mount Pershing and Jefferson Ridge on the far side of the Hamma Hamma Valley. While we highly recommend this hike, it’s definitely not for the unprepared. At the same time, many guidebooks give the impression that this trail requires some serious mountaineering skills to tackle. This is not the case. While there is one very small section that will probably require you to use some handholds to help you climb up the roots and rocks, that’s as harrowing as it gets." Read more

Lake of the Angels Reviews

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Well this trail lived up to it reputation of being a climber's hiking trail. The trail starts climbing as soon as you leave the rail head and has very few grade reversals until you reach the last bit of trail by the lake. I encountered snow at about 4400 feet with the lake being covered and running water revealing snow up to at least 12 feet deep. I encountered no down tree but there maybe some under a fresh avalanche towards the top.
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Definitely a hard hike. Don't go if you have bad knees.

Lake of the Angels Photos

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Trail Information

Nearby City
7.4 miles
3,350 feet
Elevation Gain
Trail Type
Skill Level
Late July to mid-October
Additional Use
Views, Wildflowers
Olympic National Forest, Hood Canal Ranger District, Quilcene and Olympic National Park, Wilderness Information Center
Local Contacts
Green Trails Olympic Mountains East No. 168S, Custom Correct Mount Skokomish–Lake Cushman
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Dec 2018