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hiking
9 hours ago

$5 permit needed for parking. No issues finding parking at 4pm. Such a fun hike given variety of nature such as little creeks or a fallen tree blocking the path. Best of all is the reward of a beautiful lake at the top!

Love this hike, definitely a climb but so worth the view. Got up early and did it at sunrise, there was still a layer of fog on the water and the ship-man it made for a beautiful hike. It’s a challenge but a goody. Parking is limited so I recommend getting there early!

Definitely a rewarding hike. I loved it.. by far my favorite place.

The lake is just magical. Must return on a clear day.

The whole hike was excellent! the first few miles started easy then it gradually increase as you work your way up to the top. Going down from the top is a little scary so I suggest you take you steps carefully. It took me almost 4 hours from top to bottom (lower trail)

hiking
13 hours ago

Phenomenal hike, definitely harder than I thought it would be but totally worth it. Snow Lake was colder but it felt so good to swim in such a clean lake :) View from the top before heading down to the lake is so worth it!!!

beautiful and amazing trail, but there were so many bugs! seriously! everytime we stopped we would get swarmed. besides this it was a quick and hard hike. My group didn't start until about 5 and made it down by 9. The snow was unexpected but pleasant and refreshing to see.

I found this trail BRUTAL. Make sure you have a huge breakfast and bring at least 2+ litres of water and plenty of food and snacks. Only exposure to sun is right at the top so don't worry about SPF or anything like that unless you plan on staying up there a while.

It was gorgeous and breathtaking but I can't comment on whether the physically demanding hike is worth it. That's up to you to decide.

I used the trailhead direct bus from seattle, only $2.75 and drops you off right at the bottom of the trail. These run at the weekends in summer only I believe.

Trail wasn't too crowded for a Saturday and everyone was really friendly and encouraging. Some athletes ran up and down it then back up again in the time it took us to climb up!

We did this hike last week. We luckily counted on a break in the smoke from the Canada fires. The views are stunning and there are still some wildflowers along the trail. I highly recommend this trail but do it early and on a weekday if you can.

Great moderate-difficult day hike with outstanding lake views at the end. The trail to Rachel lake can get a bit confusing as there are no marked trail signs but keep looking for where you find the maximum density of footprints and follow along. Recorded about 11.5 miles RT to Rampart lake and back.

hiking
15 hours ago

I’m 22, 5’1, 120lbs and I left my body and soul on the trail. This is hike is definitely difficult. It took my group and I about 3.5+ hours to get to the lake. I’d say this hike has 2 parts. The first part is the most intense, you’re going on a steep uphill for about 2 hours? It seems like never ending, never look up it’s discouraging. Bugs weren’t bad, weather was fine. The second part is when it plateaus a little then you go down hill for 1.5 hours? When you get to the lake go to the small little water fall on the left side of the lake it’s beautiful there. Water is cold.
Tip: WEAR GOOD SHOES. I wore running shoes and they were not comfortable throughout the trip
Bring at least 2L of water! You will be sweating tons
Enjoy the hike!

hiking
15 hours ago

Hike is okay. The view is nothing spectacular up top. When I got back at 10am Sunday, the parking lot was full, so get there early.

Beautiful and friendly. Make sure you have the right pass (mountain pass or something like that.) Many rocks and roots and lots of uphill, including some switchback. But absolutely worth it.

hiking
17 hours ago

Nice place to hike. Love this trail.

Amazing views and a moderate hike. Would give 5 stars but the amount of people brings down the appeal a little bit. At 3pm on a Tuesday there were around 25 people at the top.

hiking
18 hours ago

Nice trail. A lot of the hike is spent in the woods on switchbacks but the top has some excellent views. Get ready to sweat.

hiking
18 hours ago

This has to be one of the best trails in all of WA!! Great views and not too bad of workout.

I was worried about the drive up, the bugs and crazy amounts of people. The drive up is rough like all the reviews say but my ford focus made it no problem. Just take it slow and you'll be fine. I didn't wear bug spray and they were non existent. I left the trail head at 7:30am to beat the crowds. At the top there were just a couple people and a few volunteers. On my way down (after 9:30) there was 100+ people making their way up.

The views are incredible and the actual hike itself is not bad for a fit individual. Took 3 hours round trip with 30 minutes at the top. Well worth the drive from South of Seattle.

My tip would be just to arrive early and you'll enjoy it way more!! This is a great hike.

backpacking
18 hours ago

Went up to Gothic Basin this past weekend and is sad to report back that almost every single campsite had a fire pit in a location where fires are prohibited. We disassembled some of them but was frustrated and angry to see that people have no respect for these fragile places that we are so lucky to go and for LNT principles. Please educate yourself before heading out there and leave places better then when you found it.

Loved it, get there early to get a spot and bring your Discover Pass. You can purchase a day pass in the parking lot for $10. Recommend walking sticks for the descent. Beautiful views of river and falls.
Air quality was good but a bit of a haze still lingered.

I hiked this yesterday, it was a lovely. Coming from the Eugene area, it was a nice getaway, but not something I would drive very far for. The climate this time of year is very dry. Most of the grass and moss at the top of the hill in the clearing was seemingly dead, and the dirt was very dusty. For this reason I suggest wearing good grip shoes and bring a hiking stick if that is available to you.

I recommend using TJ Banker’s directions as they were very clear and accurate - thanks for sharing!
Also just to clarify - when you reach the end of Marcola Rd. where the road forks, near the Shotgun creek map, take the paved road to the right rather than following the road immediately upward.

Happy trails!

hiking
20 hours ago

Been there on 2018/06/16 Saturday. Best hiking place. It is a package with nice lake at the base and very good views from the top. Very big parking lot. And nice picnic area at the lake. Good place for Kayaking in lake. Relatively near by and easily accessible from Issaquah and I-90.

hiking
20 hours ago

Been there on 2018/06/02. Very good hike. Lot of crowd. Paragliding at the same point. Near to Issaquah Front street. Has a designated parking lot but small. I would go there again.

hiking
20 hours ago

Loved it. The stairs were rough but after that, it was amazing. The difference in views around each corner was breathtaking. Then of course the payoff at the end. ♥️

excellent trail with a great view.

Good short hike. Good elevation to get your body working. Very heavily trafficked. We reached at 8:45 am and parking was starting to get full, and while coming back there were even more people going up.
The view from the top is spectacular, only problem being the high number of people. Overall a good hike.

This wasn’t my favorite hike for several reasons. This is a VERY populated hike. Way too many people on this touristy trail. The view and scenery was just ok. For a beginner, I’m sure it’s spectacular. But I’ve been on more beautiful hikes in the Mt Rainier and Mt Baker areas. It is a nice soft and well groomed trail but extremely dusty and dirty. Your shoes will be covered with dust/dirt after this hike. It took almost 7 miles (3hrs) in and out to the Freemont Lookout so its a nice little walk with some inclines. I would rate this as moderate. The view of Mt Rainier was fairly obstructed by all the wildfire smoke unfortunately. You are not able to access the lakes here because they are off limits but there are lots of trail offshoots and loops. The best thing about this hike for me was the wild life. Saw a marmot, lots of chipmunks, and other little small mammals that look like gerbils and guinea pigs! Also, be aware that on weekends, the line through the ranger station at the park’s entrance at 410 is crowded and will take a long time to get through even with a pass.

Pretty hike! Way too many people...

23 hours ago

Beautiful hike, we love it

hiking
1 day ago

I did this trail on July 23, 2018 counterclockwise. This trail has some dramatic scenery of 2 pristine lakes, wildflowers, and snow capped peaks. Personally one of the most beautiful and the hardest hike I’ve ever done. I would consider it on the hard side for a moderate hiker although in honesty I had done the Blue Lake trail right before this so I was already starting from a tired state. I had also hiked just to lake Ann and then came back to do the full loop (you have to backtrack). My advice would be have hiking poles, start early and take your time. I finished the round trip counterclockwise in about 4 hours with a very short break at the top. I ended up hurting my knee (in a lot of pain on the way down) and couldn’t hike another trail for a few days. I think I made the mistake of starting late so I rushed coming down. By the way, the blue lake trail is probably my favorite ever and it’s easier than this one. It’s not too far from this one either.

The trail was pretty good. The weather was cloudy so very soothing to sit at the top. Only drawback was mount Ranier was not visible.
First break spot is at 1.25. Miles.
2hours to go up and 1 hour to go down for us...

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