Anderson and Watson Lakes Trail is a 5.3 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Concrete, Washington that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.
dogs on leash
Directions from Sedro-Woolley: Follow State Route 20 east for 17 miles to milepost 82. Turn left on Baker Lake Highway (Forest Road #11). Continue for 14 miles to the Baker Dam Road and turn right. Drive past the Puget Sound Energy Kulshan Campground and across the Upper Baker Dam. After crossing the dam, turn left on Road #1107. Follow this road for 8 miles and then go left on Road #1107022. The trailhead and parking area are located on the right.
G to last lake for most privacy and best camp spots! Beautiful lake, great mountain views all without too much effort (just equal effort on way in and out) . Lots of blueberries when in season! One downfall is lots of bugs.
This is an absolutely beautiful hike. The roads are good and the trail conditions are great. It would be a 5 star if not for the bugs. Take plenty of bug spray!
Hiked this one with a friend. Still plenty of snow. Road up to parking was in good shape up to where the snow was covering the road. Not much of a chance to get up the big hill with the snow, so we just hiked from there. Didn't make it into the lakes due to the snow. Will have to try this one again later in the spring.
We went to Watson Lakes. Beautiful setting, some nice camp sites, or easily done as a day hike.
I hiked down to Watson and Anderson Lakes in the morning and then took the Anderson Butte side trail on the way back. They are all fairly short trails so there is definitely time to explore. The dirt road to the trail-head was in good shape and had a nice size parking lot. There were great views of Baker and Shuksan from the road just before you get to the trail-head. Patches of frozen snow on each of the trails that were a little slippery but I did ok without poles. The fall colors at Watson Lakes were gorgeous and offered some amazing reflections in the morning against the calm water. Nice camping spots near the lakes. The 360 views from the top of Anderson Butte are also great. Watson Lakes were more interesting than Anderson Lakes in my opinion. I prefer Park Butte on the west side of Baker Lake but this is also a beautiful trail and less crowded. Luckily I didn't run into the bug problems mentioned by others.
Just finished this hike yesterday and even though I was bug fodder, I do think this is worth doing at least once. If I ever do it again, I will be sure to actually carry the bug spray with me. Ours sweated off on the way there and we paid on the way back. Can't remember when I have ever dealt with such aggressive bugs and flies. Also, if you are already tired when you come to the fork off for deciding which lake to visit, choose Watson over Anderson. Then if you have enough energy after doing Watson, go ahead and do Anderson after. Watson is definitely the more picturesque. (See photo). For the drive up, no issues for a 4-wheel drive. A few ruts on the road. A potty by Baker Lake trail at the beginning of the mountain and then another potty when you get to the trailhead (at least 30-45 minutes later). Even if you don't the trail, the drive is spectacular. Driving over the dam and seeing Mt. Baker and Baker Lake are epic. Don't miss the waterfall to the right when you are driving over the dam to get there. Also the road over the dam only fits one car so give it a peek before you start across in case someone else has already started on the other side. Shaded parking at the trailhead in case you need to leave Fido in the car. Noticed a few people carrying poles and you can see the big fish getting some of those bugs off the water -- they must be enormous. Discover pass isn't good. You need Northwest Passage.
Just finished this hike and it was amazing! Beautiful views of Mount Baker (if its not foggy). LOTS of bugs, so carry plenty of bug spray. There is plenty of changes as far as climbs and dips so you are not just climbing the entire way out, and descending the entire way back. Trail can get quite narrow in places, so passing other hikers is tricky. I recommend this hike!
Choose this hike for our annual (2) family backpacking trip since we only had 2 nights. The BUGS were terrible (biting flies and mosquitoes). However, this is a well-maintained trail with great camp sites. The trail has wooden planks acrossed heather meadows in some spots, the steps can be a little steep for short legs, like mine and the 8 & 9 year olds on the trip.
We stayed at lower Anderson Lake since you are allowed to have camp fires (small fire pits at each camp site), and did day hikes to Watsons and upper Anderson lakes. Both Watson lakes are free of snow and warmer to swim in than Anderson because they are much larger. One of the upper Anderson lakes was still frozen and the other was partially thawed, the bugs were better there and we saw people camping with kids (but you can't have fires). You can fish in lower Anderson and the 2 Watson lakes, my hubby caught a 10 in. rainbow and let it go but very few bites.
The kids (16, 14, 9 & 8) had a great time climbing on the screes finding quartz for the parents to lug back home. If I had a dollar for every rock that kid brings home... They also had fun finding and catching toads, salamanders, newts and got over the fact that they didn't catch any fish. We saw a few shooting stars but can just imagine what it was like up there during the Perseid Meteor shower.
All in all a great trip and an area we will come back to investigate for day trips since it is only 2 1/2 hours from Seattle. The views of Mt. Baker and Mt. Sushkan from the one lane gravel road are worth the drive.
It's been awhile since I've done this hike but it is beautiful and I've done it a couple times. I don't recommend backpacking in October though brrrr.