Liberty Creek Trail

Liberty Lake Regional Park, Washington

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9 Reviews
4 out of 5
Liberty Creek Trail is a hiking trail in Spokane County, Washington. It is within Cedar Grove Conservation Area and Liberty Lake Regional Park. It is 2.7 miles long and begins at 3,284 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 5.5 miles with a total elevation gain of 1,614 feet.
Distance: mi Elevation: ft
Liberty Creek Trail is a hiking trail in Spokane County, Washington. It is within Cedar Grove Conservation Area and Liberty Lake Regional Park. It is 2.7 miles long and begins at 3,284 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 5.5 miles with a total elevation gain of 1,614 feet. This trail connects with the following: Edith Hansen Trail.
Activity Type: Hiking, Mountain Biking, Trail Running, Walking
Nearby City: Liberty Lake Regional Park
Distance: 2.7
Elevation Gain: 1,614 feet
Trailhead Elevation: 3,284 feet
Top Elevation: 3,284 feet
Additional Use: Camping, Mountain Biking
Features: Waterfalls
Accessibility: Dog-friendly
Parks: Cedar Grove Conservation Area
Elevation Min/Max: 2094/3284 ft
Elevation Start/End: 3284/3284 ft

Liberty Creek Trail Professional Reviews and Guides

"The Liberty Creek Loop is one of the most rewarding hikes covered in this book. It is, however, also one of the most difficult. The route takes you from the marshland at the south end of Liberty Lake through mixed forests that consist of three species of pines as well as grand and Douglas fir, western hemlock, western red cedar, and several deciduous species. You climb more than 1,200 feet to reach Camp Hughes before descending back to lake level."

"From the pay station, follow the route past the day-use restrooms and picnic shelter for 0.5 mile to the restrooms area at the far end of the campground. Look for the main trailhead kiosk and gate (near campsite 21), and head up along Liberty Creek. At 0.8 mile pass a junction with the old trail coming in from the right. A new route was built in 2011 so hikers could avoid the lower portion of the creek, home to busy beavers."

"Liberty Lake County Park is a popular picnicking area, with a swimming beach, cooking shelters, playground, campsites, and volleyball nets. But many people don’t realize the park extends far beyond the facilities through a timbered mountain preserve.

This hike meanders up Liberty Creek and along a hillside through the park before gaining nearly 1,200 feet in elevation. It’s a mostly cool, quiet retreat, first through cottonwoods and ponderosa pines, then through Douglas firs and cedars."

"About ten miles east of downtown Spokane. This challenging trail will be fun for those who are prepared for it. For those who aren't, this is not where to learn your trail skills. Lots of steep ups and downs, lots of getting on and off your bike, and a rocky, thick forest trail make this a sustained expert loop.

There's even a waterfall or tow. Connections to Mica Peak (Idaho) and beyond are the rewards for those who have the gas to get there. The trail has 1.2 miles park road/doubletrack and 7.7 miles steep, narrow, and rocky singletrack with streams, soft spots, and downed trees."

"Starting along the marshland at the south end of Liberty Lake, this hike takes you through mixed forests, which consist of grand and Douglas fir, western hemlock, western red cedar, and several deciduous species, as well as three species of pines.

Then you climb more than 1,200 feet to reach the Camp Hughes Cabin. Past the cabin the route descends, following abandoned roadbeds back to lake level."

"Spokane has a lot going for it these days, including a thriving outdoor recreation scene. And while most folks are familiar with the city’s namesake falls that plunge alongside a picturesque downtown waterfront, very few are aware of Liberty Lake Falls. From the trailhead, follow the signed path that joins up with a gravel road and passes through the campground to a gate. Continue hiking past the gate as the trail makes its way beyond the marshland at the south end of Liberty Lake.

At the 0.8-mile mark take a moment to read the interpretive displays that disseminate information about the beaver dams easily seen from the trail. After 0.9 mile of total hiking, stay straight at a junction and continue along the path now paralleling a gurgling Liberty Creek. The trail climbs gently for the next 1.4 miles, crossing a set of footbridges before arriving at Cedar Grove."

"Tucked between the sprawling cities of Spokane and Post Falls is a 3000-acre “pocket wilderness.” Liberty Lake County Park straddles the Washington- Idaho border, providing a green sliver to an ever-suburbanizing corridor.

Purchased for $245,000 in 1966, this 1-by-5-mile property is now a priceless gem of the Spokane County Parks Department. A mere 10 miles from downtown Spokane, you and your dog can hike along rushing creeks, through old-growth forest, and to scenic lookouts. Wildlife is abundant and viewing opportunities are good."

"This gem of a trail is mostly shaded and cool. It follows Liberty Creek, crosses the creek here and there on footbridges, then crosses and follows the waterfall up the hill to the ridge. After the midpoint, enjoy a fast and continuous downhill dash to the valley.

The trail in the area approaching and passing the waterfall is rugged and steep. The rest of the trail is well maintained and well marked. Liberty Lake County Park is 1 mile wide and 5 miles long. It has been an active recreation site since the first settlers arrived in 1871. The historical information on the back of the hiking map is quite interesting. It talks about the area going from roadhouse to a respectable summer resort to a ranch. Finally in 1966, it was purchased by Spokane County with matching funds from federal and state agencies to become the Liberty Lake Natural Area."

Liberty Creek Trail Reviews

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6/16/2014
nice trail, forgot my guide so it took a bit to find it and I'm pretty sure I didn't take the right trail out (or if I did that sucker's steep and way more technical that I can manage). You'll have to dodge quite a few horse crap mines but there was no one else anywhere around on a Monday at 6pm. Definitely going to try this again, only I'll remember my guide next time.
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6/15/2011
I randomly chose this hike out of a book and was more than happy. I did the trail clockwise and is what I'd recommend. The trail begins by following a small creek upstream. After making it to a small picnic area (good place to take a rest if needed), you begin heading up switchbacks. I also like my hikes to be a workout with some elevation gain involved. The waterfall was amazing, especially given this year's melt. I recommend going in late spring to see the water rush. During my hike it started to rain (no worries, just bring rain gear). The last mile was awesome because of the rain. The trail was flooded and hikers needed to use these mini "bridges" constructed out of tree stumps and old 2x4. I would definitely do this trail again. My Time: 2:40
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7/21/2010
Got done with work early and decided to do a quick trek on this loop before sundown. Ended up being a bit tougher than I thought it would be but if you aren't speeding through it not to bad. I took the loop clockwise which ended up being the steeper climb up which I prefer. When taking it clockwise the first half of the loop follows a rushing creek with lots of mini rapids to listen to on the way. The back of the loop has a few small waterfalls with lots of downed pines laying across it. Some of the switchbacks near the waterfall got fairly steep but not too bad. The loop back out going clockwise was a steady downhill back to the parking lot. Total Distance - 8.35 miles Max Speed - 8.39 mi.hr Total Time - 2:14:03 Average Speed - 3.74 mi.hr Moving Time - 1:54:02 Average Moving Speed - 4.39 mi.hr Elevation Gain - 2,333 ft Min Elevation - 2,017 ft Max Elevation - 3,301 ft Min Grade - 1.4% Max Grade - 17.4% I uploaded the GPS file also.
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9/5/2009
This is a beautiful trail, however not very well marked passed the Cedars (2 miles in from trailhead). The switchbacks go up and its a long walk to the waterfall and up again to the cabin, then it's 3.6 miles down. Well worth going to, but with someone familiar with the trail on the first hike.
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5/10/2009
We did this hike with our toddler (rode in a backpack for most, but there were several areas where she could easily walk alongside us). This well marked trail had it all, easy paths through trees, switchbacks, bridges, waterfalls, beautiful views, even an outhouse near the cabin near the top of the loop! It took us 4 1/2 to 5 hours to complete. Note: it was a hot day, but near the waterfalls the temps were very cold and we needed jackets.
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8/23/2008
Very Nice hike east of Spokane, WA. The cost was $2 per person with limited parking at the main trail head. We hiked the loop clock wise and found the walking very easy for the first 2 miles, at the 2 mile point we crossed the creek and proceeded to the falls with the trail making numberous switch backs. The falls were not very pronounced as the creek was running slowly. At this point the trail was not as clearly marked due to lots of game trails in the woods. Once we got to the top we crossed an old road and the trail went straight up a small hill where there was a old out house and just to the west a very usable cabin. We proceeded to finish the hike using a old trail road. The temperature was very comfortable and the signage and maps well done. The odd thing we saw were elk dropping at several spots on the south part of the loop on the way back to the car. Spokanites, this a very good outing right in your own back yard.
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5/25/2007
You actually see 2 waterfalls. Two steep climbs: first is a series of switchbacks that aren't too bad; second is much steeper with a lot of logs fallen over the trail. Return trail is more of a road and very easy, but the steep downhill descent gives your front thighs a good workout. Only met one person, a lady with a huge dog right at the start of the trail. She said her dog just chased a bear through the water, but it disappeared. I sang and talked a lot on my lonely late afternoon hike with my dog.
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5/24/2007
Great trail, not too many people since I went on a weekday. It's definintely unexpected so close to the city. Well maintained, except for a few places badly worn by erosion and blowdown. I'll definitely return to this one.
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10/27/2002
Travel this trail clockwise. Maintenance has fallen off a bit, and trail erosion makes it a difficult descent the other way. Saw a rare N. American bare tushy running up the trail away from me, trying to pull it''s pants up.(hiker''s, please don''t pee in the trail, pee mud is gross!) Coming down the other side makes life worth while. Plenty of kelly-humps to launch off and trail changes often to keep it interesting. Don''t veer off on the "Scenic Trail" unless you want to ride around the lake, or ride a long ways back up hill.
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Jun 2018