Reed Lakes Trail is a 11.6 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Palmer, Alaska that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible from April until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail.
Varied terrain, first two miles is well maintained, then move into a more rugged trail as you head deeper into the mountains. Several boulder fields.
We did this hike on October 9th, 2016. It is actually a 9 mile round trip to the upper lake from the trailhead where you park your car. I think the reference to the 11.6 miles as described above may be if you hiked up Archangel Road from Hatcher Pass Road. It was definitely fall time and overcast skies. Thin ice on the ponds and the upper lakes had a few inches of ice on them. It was challenging in that the trail was very muddy and super slippery especially on the steep inclines, and coming down the steep, slippery trail was really exciting!!! The boulder field was actually kind of fun. You just have to look at where you are going to pick the best traveled path. We had a dog with us who is very long legged and agile, like a cat. He did just fine, although he was hesitant to jump from boulder to boulder in some areas. It was better if we were all ahead of him, and he would follow. I think I would love to do this hike again when the trail is dry and the foliage is colorful (summer or early fall). It took us 6.5 hours from trailhead to upper lake and back. We made a few short stops to rest and eat. I personally would not take little kids more than the first mile or so as I would think it would be really challenging for them and they would tire easily. And the boulder field isn't for little ones and it would be hard for an adult to traverse the field while holding or packing them. I would say the description of Moderate as shown here is adequate for a dry day. It is more challenging when the trail is muddy and slippery.
amazing gorgeous hike .. great day hike or over night as there is awesome camping at lower lake!
Amazing hike! Spent a night out at the lake. Not very difficult with a day pack. When we were there a dog got across the rock section but didn't want to go back. Being a 70 pound dog it caused some problems for the owners. The rock scrambling is very fun and not too difficult. A must do hike in AK!!
All around, beautiful hike with lakes and waterfalls. It is definitely worth hiking to both the upper and lower lakes. The upper lake is a lot larger than the lower lake and you will come across the waterfall on the way. We hiked this trail a day after the rain, so bouldering was a little tricky as the boulders were wet and were at times slippery.
One of the most beautiful hikes so far this year. Bridges, boulders, waterfalls and the bluest lakes you will ever see!!!!!
Love love love this hike! Planning to backpack it soon.
It's fairly flat until you reach the boulder field. There is a waterfall and lake to stop off at on your way. This is a great hike for anyone that is wanting beautiful scenery every mile of the way. Personally, I wouldn't recommend taking dogs. The boulders would be hard for them to cross over. If you have a smaller dog you could carry, that would be possible. Just use your best judgment on your dogs ability.
I loved this hike! Absolutely Beautiful. I'll definitely do this one again. Unique terrain makes for an awesome adventure the entire way.
I love this hike, one of my favorites in Alaska. It looks like you stepped into a lord of the rings movie. Hatchers Pass is always beautiful and reed lakes is no exception. The terrain is unique, which makes it a pretty fun trail. It's definitely a long hike, but completely worth it.
This trail was stunningly beautiful. Every mile offered exquisite views and interesting trails. The first part of the trail was very easy, good for kids and the elderly. There is a clear path that is easy to follow, difficult to trip or slip on, and is very relaxing. This part of the trail goes all the way to the beaver dams and offers beautiful views near the end, crossing wooden bridges over running water and finally seeing the beaver-made lake. At this point, things turn to a moderate difficulty. It's a snaking dirt path with intermittent rocks. I don't advise making this part of the journey on a wet day as the mud is very slick. Be sure to look out for each other and don't be afraid to ask for a hand up, you may need it. Once you reach the part of the trails where the boulders over the water are, it becomes very difficult. Definitely not for beginners, but worth the view if you can make it. I advise keeping an eye out for the weather. Wear waterproof or water resistant clothing, especially shoes. Bring a couple pairs of socks. Carry as little weight as you can and try to strap it evenly across your back. If you plan on camping, bring a small, lightweight tent. Wear layers that you can remove and put back on easily. These are just some tips my group would have done better for knowing. This was our first major hike and we were unprepared. Be sure to do your research.
Every mile offers something different. Valley home along little lakes and beaver dams, to a boulder field, to beautiful, narrow creek valley, and then up to the lakes. There are a few challenging areas, but over all it's a moderate hike.
Beautiful hike and a great family hike, super pretty in the summer. The trail is easy to follow. There is a portion of boulders that can be challenging for dogs and smaller children but manageable. Bring a jacket even if it is warm, it was cooler at the top of the mountain.