Crystal Lakes Trail is a 5 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Paradise Inn, WA that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking and is accessible from July until October.
From Seattle, east on I-90, south on I-405 and then south on Highway 169 to Enumclaw. In Enumclaw, south on Highway 410, 4.6 miles past junction with Crystal Mountain Boulevard find a small (easy to miss) trailhead on left.
Dense forest with great view points, there was only a small vista of rainier at the beginning of the hike but it was a gorgeous one nonetheless. The lake itself was very small and secluded, I'll upload some pictures I took. Awesome hike
great hike, one of my favorites this summer! the trail itself is in great shape...no rocks or roots to trip on! i went today, one of the hottest days of the summer. it could have been the heat or the altitude, but it did seem a little more difficult than i expected. But definitely worth it. if you go in the summer, it will be extra grueling in the direct sun closer to the end of the trail. Over all, steep but definitely doable as a moderate hike. I didn't see much of rainer ( other than a quick glimpse thru the trees on the way up) so on the way back down, i took the fork towards crystal peak. This added an additional 5 miles (when you are going down, its a left turn to get on this trail). really great views of mt rainer on the peak trail!! both trails are marked well, including mileage. can't wait to go back soon!!
3 thumbs up
The trail is long and steep. If you're not used to the high altitude it will be even harder than expected, but if you have water and are in decent shape you shouldn't have any problems getting to the top. The views at the top are absolutely worth it!
Great hike this morning! Good workout since its uphill just about the entire way. You start off in a dense Forrest and then it thins out as you go up to beautiful flowers and thinner Forrest. The lakes were clear and clean and I might have jumped in if I had my swimming gear!
Beautiful once you get to the top, especially if you choose to continue on to the upper lake. Switchbacks make up 80% of the trail and are very punishing.
This trail was awesome. It is definitely a very steep climb- it gets steeper and steeper as you go. We went very slow and round trip took us about 5 hours. Beautiful scenery the whole time, the lake at the top is definitely worth it.
7/13/2016 (Wednesday) -- The trail is in super good condition, no mud, no rock, no roots, smooth surface, broad, and clean, perfectly maintained to the upper lake, though moderately steep. The view of the lake is fascinating, but the most awesome view is the backdrop of Mount Rainier behind the peaks around the lake that can be seen from half way to the ridge. It's absolutely worth moving up for 1 mile from the lake to the ridge if the weather is cloudless like we saw today around noon. We went to the ridge of the PCT, looking to the south, seeing Sheep Lake below. The trail is used moderately. We met several groups of nice people, and mostly by ourselves on the way and by the lake.
Trail was in great condition. Went with my ten year old daughter and my husband that had our almost 1 year old in a carrier. Trail has a pretty good incline that can be steep in some parts but can be doable even for a beginner if you take your time. The trail was clear of snow and was big free until we passed the lower lake trail. After that the mosquitoes and sweat bees were plentiful but not overwhelming. The upper lake was worth the extra .5 mile after passing the lower lake. There is some snow around the lake but mostly on the opposite side of where the trail leads you to. Definitely one of my favorite hikes! Would love to do the peak next! Also, the trail is actually 3 miles to upper lake and 3.8 to the peak and that's based off of the trail head sign.
A beautiful trail with fantastic views of Mt Rainier. Snow still covered parts of the trail making it a challenge to get to the lower lake but we made it and it was worth it! Tried to make it the last half mile to the upper lake but arrived to a field that was completely snow covered...that is when we turned back. Still the views were spectacular; definitely worth it.
Had amazing views of mount Rainier but couldn't get to the lakes because there was still snow and you couldn't tell where the trail was. It's considered a moderate trail
This is a great hike. I have done it a few times. Pretty steady incline with switchbacks going up so it can be tough. Bring lots of water.
Has a bit of everything. Make sure you hit the peak too!
Nice little hike near Mt. Rainier. The lake is quite nice and has some great views along the way. The climb is entirely uphill, thus the way down will be much easier. The terrain is well padded for the most part under the tree cover until you get to the top which is slightly more rocky. As well there is an outdoor toilet at the top of the mountain.
I wanted to camp here since the first time I hiked it! Upper crystal lake has 2 camp sites and is an amazing place to camp.
Loved it...clearest water I've ever seen...will be back
We loved this hike! Such a beautiful setting at the top! Was a little challenging hiking with a toddler on back but fun! Want to do this one again!
Crystal Lakes Trail: The hike up I would venture as more than moderate. It was quite the elevation gain and for those not accustom to hiking may find it difficult. This was my 8th hike of the season and I found it challenging. All worth it once at the top to enjoy the lake views (will be coming back for Cyrstal Peak Trail). Dogs not allowed. Trekking poles or walking staff recommended. Snow patches near top. Lake still half frozen.