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Very good views of the lake nestled amongst tree-lined peaks - well worth the hike. One of the rockier trails I’ve done, so sturdy soles are a must. It does get pretty slippery and icy close to the top. I had to bundle up as the wind picked up closer to the top, but then is cut off once you get through the switchbacks towards the lake. Overall, great hike!

hiking
15 hours ago

This was our first hike in the PNW! We loved it! It was a little bit slippery at the top, thankfully we had read reviews and used microspikes, they made all the difference!
We really enjoyed it! and the view was amazing!

hiking
15 hours ago

Good walk through the woods. Very easy hike with such a good view of the lake.

hiking
1 day ago

Super crowded. But the spectacular view of the lake was worth putting up with the hordes of people.

Definitely a lot of potholes on Pilchuk Road, but the hike and the lake were beautiful. There were maybe 15 cars in the lot when we got there around 11 on a Saturday, but the trail wasn’t crowded by any means. You warm up hiking in the forest but it definitely gets cold when you’re at the lake and don’t have the tree cover. Like others are saying, the boardwalks along the lake were frosty but it was manageable. There was some snow at the lake (not on the trail itself) and the lake was iced over a bit. We saw a lot of younger children in rain boots that definitely were not enjoying themselves because there are a lot of rocks and tree roots that can be difficult to navigate at times.

hiking
2 days ago

Great hike, not too hard but a decent workout. Some snow and ice at the top once near Snow Lake right now, if you have crampons on poles it’s not a big deal. The scenery was great, temperature wasn’t too cold, and not overly busy, worth the time.

Amazing old growth trail. I agree with the moderate rating because of the elevation gain and the difficulty of navigating the trail. Roots and rocks can be a big problem if you don’t pay attention. The reward at the lake is well worth the effort. Beautiful even on a cloudy day! I had the trail and lake to myself today. I ran into 4 people on the way down. I will return to this trail in the summer I am sure it’s even more stunning!

Simply INCREDIBLE!! We won the permit lottery and were fortunate enough to spend three amazing days backpacking through the enchantments in late August.

Our itinerary was as follows
-Day 1 Enter through Colchuck TH-Colchuck Lake-Aasgard pass-into the Core, camping in the core
-Day 2 Exploring the core (highly recommend!), camped in Leprechaun Lake (stunning!)
-Day 3 Descended out of the core and exited through snow lake

I have hiked probably 50 ish hikes since moving to Washington and this was by far my favourite HANDS DOWN. Once you enter the core it is like a whole different world up there-alpine lakes, mountains, sheer cliff faces, moss covered rocks and small wildflowers, goats..I could go on.

Some words of advice particularly for those backpacking
-pack for ALL conditions. It snowed on our first night in August!
-start early, once you are in the core it never seems like you have enough time there
-though rare we did see a bear coming down through snow lake, so be warned
-there is plenty of water around, no need to carry much..especially up Aasgard
-Aasgard is rough, especially with a 30lb pack on. Take your time and enjoy the view
-the good camp sites fill up early. Move camp early and get established, then go exploring

I’m so fortunate to have backpacked here and I encourage everyone to do the same..apply for the lottery!!!

the scenery is gorgeous, the air smells like christmas candles as you climb. First 3/4 of the trail are easy slow climb, after that it turns into more intense switchbacks. Very snowy and slippery at the top, so wear appropriate footwear. If you have removable krampons or hiking poles I would suggest those for the top portion as I saw lots of people fall and almost fell myself a number of times. I even saw a lady with a sprained ankle being carried down by her husband. Bring lots of layers so that you can take off as you ascend and then put back on as you descend. This time of year when we got to the top at 2:10 the sun was already set on the lake so get an early start, aim to be at the top for noon. Amazing view, so worth it!

Winter wonderland! Don’t forget your spikes for the last half of the trail.

Winter wonderland! Over a foot of snow everywhere! Make sure you bring micro-spikes and hiking poles. Some spots get very slippery. The most beautiful wonder hike I have done so far. (Oh and wear waterproof shoes)

hiking
8 days ago

Wet, slippery but beautiful! Waterproof shoes a must! Beautiful and frosted ground at the lake.

Lovely, well maintained trail easy enough for all levels including beginners. It follows a river. If the lovely couple who graciously loaned me her shoes and his socks because I left my boots at home see this, please contact me so I can return your things. You took down my number but would not give me yours. You live in the Olalla area. I am an honest person and want to return your boots and socks.

hiking
14 days ago

Unfortunately there was too much water to cross one of the waterfalls that had developed due to the rain lately. We were one of four groups that doubled back. Seems like it would be beautiful based on the first 30 minutes though!

on Monte Cristo Trail

14 days ago

Great stroll even in the pouring rain. We turned into the trail at the first large caution sign that crossed a wooden bridge into the woods. We should have stayed straight right toward the rivers edge instead of going up. The next woops was we missed the pile of rocks to indicate where to turn to actually go to Monte Cristo from that side of the trail. We went about a mile past the turn before we realized and had to backtrack. We were gaining elevation and the route to Montecristo is lowland around 700 feet. So if you take that route look for a pile of rocks about mile and a half in on your left hand side and take a left at that pile of rocks. You will eventually get down to the river again to find that long log that most people talk about that you need to cross over and from there you just keep Truckin ahead on the gravel road about 2 more miles and you'll find Monte Cristo.

One of the most beautiful places on earth. That simple.

hiking
15 days ago

Went today in the rain, pretty good rainy day hike with a lot of tree coverage. However, there are lots of rocks/roots that get slippery. Several different streams to cross and a good bit of time walking through water, having waterproof boots is *highly* recommended. 2-3 cars when we arrived around 9:30, but was full as we left around 11:45. The gravel road had a lot more potholes than we expected, doable in a basic car, but going slow + dodging was definitely key.

An easy trail since it’s low elevation gain and goes along a road most of the way. There is a log crossing, so I wouldn’t advise small children or anyone with balance issues or fears. However, there are other options if you decide to turn around at the log. The ghost town is very cool with pretty forest and river views along the way!The trail is worth it as long as you know what you’re getting into! I give it a three because it’s not really a hike, but more of a forest road walk.

Gorgeous views, especially on a clear fall day. It was pretty crowded on the trail, but we did go on a Sunday. Get there early if you can, the views are worth it! The lake is clear and worth the hike.

hiking
18 days ago

Beautiful views! Totally worth the hike up☺️

backpacking
18 days ago

Who changed the trail routes in the core? I was just there and the AllTrails app on iphone had us traveling east on the opposite side of Inspiration Lake hill hugging Perfection Lake and then heading South we followed Perfection around the south side then over to Vivian. Now, it has us hugging Inspiration on the west side of that hill then up towars Prusik and Gnome. Who changed this? It misses Sprite Lake which is one of my favorite areas!

Some of the trail is redirected do to wash outs and to cross the river you go over a fallen tree. all around a very beautiful hike.

backpacking
19 days ago

Did this hike with a buddy the day after the first snow. We were optimistic in how much snow but surprised to be up to our waist in some spots. We spent only one night at the top of Asgard pass in our tent. Coming up the Asgard pass was extremely difficult even for us and we are in very good shape. We had to be careful not to go off track as the Cairns were difficult to see buried under the snow. GPS was a must for us. We did our best to uncover some cairns. The heavy snow started just before Colchuck and ended after Lake Viviane. Snow varies between 1foot and 3 feet in depth. Be careful of the snow drifts and falling through to the streams and rocks below. My buddy fell through a crack into a stream below and was up to his chest to crawl out. Micro spikes are a must as sheets of ice over water and rocks were slippery. The views were absolutely spectacular and surreal. We have never seen anything like it before. Especially the sunrise at the top. Words and pictures could never ever do it justice.

Great walk with historical destination and beautiful fall colors. As noted on prior post, there was a crew of volunteers at the historic town, working to preserve this great gateway to our past... THANKS.

Only negative would be that the river crossing point was poorly marked.

hiking
20 days ago

The fall colors were beautiful! May have waited too long as far as the weather goes, we were soaking wet and then coated with snow towards the top, made for a very cold day. Can’t wait to go back next Spring or Summer to see the changes.
Followed the advice of precious reviews and wore boots with good traction, very grateful we did.

Awesome

hiking
20 days ago

Beautiful hike! Took about two hours. Great trail, some of the rocks can be a little loose or slippery tho so watch your step. The view at the top is beautiful and totally worth it! If going on a weekend, get there super early. Very popular trail. We got there at 8:30am and had no trouble parking but when we got back to the car later that afternoon, it was hard to get out of the parking lot. Absolutely packed and so was overflow parking.

Great hike with 14 boy scouts for a fun overnighter. This was a great way for the younger scouts to work on their outdoor skills. The camping area was very nice and provided plenty of room. Although not stated here (unless I missed it) the US forest service still recommends packing in water. Although there was a cleanup in 2016, the Ranger station in Verlot stated that there is the possibility of arsenic in the water still so it is good to pack in your water.

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