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The trail is very well maintained, lots of benches and break spots if ya need it! Did this hike early on a Monday and almost had the trail to myself! It was lovely!

hiking
13 hours ago

Hiked Blanca Lake August 18th-19th. As you may have seen, the service road that leads to the trailhead is inaccessible (due to previous flooding) so the parking is on the side of the service road leading up to the area. In other words, don’t worry about parking because there’s plenty of room. Unfortunately, walking that service road to the trailhead is about 2 miles, which makes the total trip a clear cut 14 miles. Since I was planning on staying the night at the lake, I had about 25-30 pounds worth of gear in my pack and wow it made this hike so brutal. Essentially, the 3,900 feet of incline is really in the 5 miles of the actual trail, not the service road. It took my sister and I about 3 1/2 hours to get to Blanca Lake and still another 3 hours to get down back to the car the next morning. Once you reach Virgin Lake, you’ll start hiking down to Blanca Lake. Like other people have said, bring at least 2L of water if not more and make sure you have plenty of time to hike this trail. It’s gorgeous. Enjoy!

hiking
22 hours ago

Beautiful lake, but it is too smoky now. I suggest hiking this trail when smoke clears. Lake is definitely very beautiful.

Rocks, dirt, and dust. While dogs are required to be on leash, many of the 'my dog is well behaved' folks ignored this. Parking was not an issue, even at a 1045AM arrival time. Unsure why this hike is rated 'hard' and the 'Ira spring' trail is rated 'moderate' when they are the exact same? 1.5hrs up and 1.0hrs back down makes for a quick trip.

beautiful mason lake makes the hike and elevation gain worth it. took my dog and we both went for a swim in mason lake. gorgeous views all along the way. saw lots of fellow hikers along the way.

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)

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’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!

An amazing trek. It was pretty smokey when we went through but still gorgeous. Water sources were plentiful once you pass much of the mine work down closer to the townsite of Monte Cristo. The hike to Glacier Basin is pretty vertical at times and is not for the beginner hiker, but certainly a challenge worth taking. The reward is one of the most beautiful views ever and on a clear night the stars are close enough to touch.

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
1 day 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.

I actually came in through the Little Mashel Falls - Bud Blancher Trail the starts south of Eatonville. I suggest to use this trail instead of going through the Pack Forest to get to the falls. The Falls are great, but would be better in the winter time with more water on the river. Very cool hiking around the falls. Steep at some points but trials are well maintained and open. Countless areas to swim and kick back on the rocks.

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.

excellent trail with a great view.

First of al, if you follow the recording provided by this trail information (the loopI), you won’t find the peak. And do remember to drive up counter-clock wise, until you see the trail entrance to your left that is off the road. We hiked this trail by following the recording a loop but couldn’t see the trail head, then turn back to by following the cold creek trial said by the recording. But it was not worthy to came back that way. The cold creek trail was totally over grown.

Next time we would just drive up the road until we see the entrance then walk up and pass the PCT sign then come down the same way. When we got up and saw the sign of PCT trail, my husband just gave up and wanted to get down, but it was definitely a mistake. For the scene, I would definitely try again next time.

I’m a novice hiker and this was my second hike in the PNW so far. The views along the way made it really enjoyable the whole way.

Es hermosa.

Very steep trail with a big payoff in views. From the peak of Mt. Ellinor you can see Rainier, Seattle, Tacoma, Olympia, and the Olympic range. It is almost guaranteed you will also see mountain goats.

Amazing hike! First clear day in awhile due to all the fires. Saw 4 goats on top, 2 babies so stayed clear. Did this hike last week as well and visibility was pretty bad. Glad to be able to see Cushman and the canal.

Nice trail with a great view from the top of Mt. Pilchuk!

PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE keep your dogs on leashes! This is WAY too hard of a hike to not see goats!! Also, one unleashed dog helped me loose my footing on the scramble up, resulting in a very sore ankle on the way down. This is NOT a good trail for dogs!

great fun family hike

Went today. The trail is closed until October 1, 2018 for logging. Now have to enter through Smallwood Park. Was about 3 miles to the lower falls.

Absolutely worth the grueling and challenging hike. Spent 1 night up at the lake and although my body is still dying, I'm already planning a second trip!
Definitely not for the lighthearted!

ALERT-- HI THEFT WARNING. Our vehicle was broken into while we hiked. They busted the car window out and when we started to look around it appears this is a regular occurrence here given all the broken glass in the parking area. The falls were beautiful and the hike was kid friendly.

backpacking
4 days ago

This trail absolutely destroyed my legs, went camping for 2 nights, Gorgeous scenery, but do not let the "light scrambles" confuse you. There were some parts where I should have hiked in a ladder. All in all the hike is beautiful but a very very strenuous all uphill/rock climbing hike

Awesome view and lots of wildlife!

One of the best hikes I’ve been on!

Start a little ways out of Eatonville, cross over railroad tracks. Great hike from TomTom Falls; the river was low, so we followed the river to the top of Little Mashel Falls. We went back up and around down to lower Little Mashel Falls great place to swim. Returned on a Wooded Trail above the little Mashel River.

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