Ingalls Way Trail

Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest, Washington

Distance5.7mi
Elevation Gain7,328ft
Trailhead Elevation6,266ft
Top6,549ft
Elevation Min/Max4495/6549ft
Elevation Start/End6266/6266ft

Ingalls Way Trail

Ingalls Way Trail is a hiking and horse trail in Chelan County and Kittitas County, Washington. It is within Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest and Alpine Lakes Wilderness Area. It is 5.7 miles long and begins at 6,266 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 12.3 miles with a total elevation gain of 7,328 feet. Near the end of the trail is an information guidepost. This trail connects with the following: Ingalls Creek Trail.

Ingalls Way Trail Professional Reviews and Guides

"This difficult 8.6-mile out-and-back day trip or backpack to an alpine lake in the Stuart Range of the Alpine Lakes Wilderness traverses spectacular open terrain on the east slopes of the Cascades.

Starting in forest, the hike quickly climbs to rocky meadows, cresting with a dramatic up-close view of imposing Mount Stuart. The lake itself is an alpine gem tucked in a rocky basin beneath the flanks of North Ingalls Peak, a popular climbing destination."

"This sunny, south-facing ridge rises above a lunar-like basin of weird red rock. The peak offers views right into the huge flank of Mount Stuart, which towers majestically just across Ingalls Creek to the east. Ingalls Peak makes an outstanding day climb (or alternative destination when foul weather cancels out a bigger climb elsewhere in the range). Because summer comes early to the area, the climbing season is long, making the peak a good climb early in the season. The approach, characterized by straightforward hiking on good trails, is part of Ingalls Peak’s appeal.

The only caveat to the climber is to beware hot days: the approach is fully exposed to summer sun, so start early. Pass, then down into the basin holding Ingalls Lake and a chaos of boulders and broken rock. A short hike and scramble lead to the base of the three-pitch South Ridge. This short but pleasant climb ascends obvious, easy cracks in sound rock; the mid-5th-class route is more face climb than ridge climb. The climb is so much fun that, once on top, some climbers are tempted to rope down and do it once more before hiking out. Equipment: Small rack to 2 inches."

"The Hollywood stars of this hike are the Larch trees at Ingalls Pass, and their draw is huge during autumn when these unusual deciduous conifers turn from green to gold. But springtime is great anywhere along this trail for wildflower hunters as you pass from forested slopes to subalpine and alpine meadows.

The high and wild Ingalls Lake, with its dramatic view of Mount Stuart, is just one step away from desolation, and it would be that way but for the crowds of weekenders who flock to the lake’s shores."

"Lake Ingalls is probably the most scenic spot in the Teanaway valley on the east slope of the Cascades. Slick red rock surrounds the deep blue water of Lake Ingalls. Beyond the deep tarn, Mount Stuart scrapes the sky. With its rugged looks and incredible height, Mount Stuart is perhaps the most dramatic peak in the Cascades. The wideopen terrain, exceptional weather, and an alpine forest full of larches are the icing on the cake at Lake Ingalls."

Ingalls Way Trail Reviews

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7/18/2009
A group of six of headed up on Saturday. The weather was gorgeous and the trail was in great shape. Mountain goats were everywhere. I woke up with seven of them in my camp.
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7/3/2009
I hiked up to Ingalls lake on a fabulously sunny/warm day. Got to the TH around 9:20 a.m. to a very full parking lot. The trail was in good shape and only a couple snow patches to cross - until I reached the pass. After that the snow was frequent and the trail was slightly difficult to locate at times. That being said, once over the pass, you can see exactly where you need to go, so I knew I'd get there one way or another. To my delight the mountain goats were out in full force! I saw a dozen or more and a couple kid goats as well. A lot of photos were taken here. Finally I pushed on to the lake, which was still frozen. It was starting to melt out in spots and around the edges. Stuart was stunning and the whole scene was gorgeous. Other than hiking with a blistered heel, the hike out was easy and relatively uneventful. I did this day hike (with and hour and a half stop at the lake) in 6 hours.
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6/29/2006
snow two thirds of the way,no post holing. lake was still frozen. huge climax avalanche across from lake.thundering noise. awsome hike with awsome views mt. stewart right in your face.
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Ingalls Way Trail Photos

Trail Information

Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest
Nearby City
Alpine Lakes Wilderness Area
Parks
Dog-friendly
Accessibility
Moderate
Skill Level
Wildflowers
Features
Okanogan/Wenatchee National Forest, Cle Elum Ranger District; (509) 8521100; www.fs.usda.gov/okawen
Local Contacts
USGS Mount Stuart; Green Trails no. 209, Mount Stuart
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Oct 2018