Waptus River Trail

Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest, Washington

Elevation Gain3,703ft
Trailhead Elevation2,475ft
Elevation Min/Max2454/3155ft
Elevation Start/End2475/2479ft

Waptus River Trail

Waptus River Trail is a hiking and horse trail in Kittitas County, Washington. It is within Alpine Lakes Wilderness Area and Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest. It is 7.8 miles long and begins at 2,475 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 15.7 miles with a total elevation gain of 3,703 feet. The trail ends near the Cooper River Trailhead parking space.

Waptus River Trail Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

Backpacking Washington: Overnight and Multi-Day Routes (The Mountaineers Books)
Craig Romano
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"Nearly 2 miles long and situated in one of the largest glacial troughs in the Central Cascades, Waptus is the largest lake in the 394,000-acre Alpine Lakes Wilderness. There are campsites aplenty and many side-trip opportunities. But don’t feel compelled to move on. You won’t tire of staring across Waptus’ sparkling waters at a towering fl ank of granite peaks that shimmer in the light of both sun and moon." Read more
Backpacking Washington's Alpine Lakes Wilderness (Falcon Guides)
Jeff Smoot
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"A long hike up Waptus River to Waptus Lake, one of the largest lakes in the Alpine Lakes Wilderness. The hike up Waptus River to Waptus Lake is one of the longer lowland river hikes in the Alpine Lakes Wilderness. Unlike most other river valleys (the nearby Cooper and Cle Elum Rivers being prime examples), no road was pushed up Waptus River by miners or loggers, which has allowed the river valley and lake to maintain a wilderness aspect unmatched by other big lakes in the region. The only thing missing is solitude; this hike, although long, gets a lot of traffic, especially horses. The going is mostly flat and easy, but with the usual ups and downs of Cascades river valley hiking. Waptus Lake, one of the largest lakes in the Alpine Lakes Wilderness, is very popular with fishermen and horse packers, yet it is large enough that you can find a secluded spot." Read more

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Trail Information

Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest
Nearby City
Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest
Skill Level
Wenatchee National Forest, Cle Elum Ranger District
Local Contacts
Green Trails Kachess Lake No. 208
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Dec 2018