Explore Future Trails - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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Wow!! That will be the reaction of 99.99% of people who do this hike, the other .01% are most likely crazy people. The magical, towering mountains around this mountain lake are simply breathtaking. It was a cold day with ice and a little snow in the higher elevations of the trail. The lake isn’t frozen over yet and the water still shows the bright blue color it’s known for. We clicked it at 8 miles round trip. Took us about 3 hrs up and 2 hrs back down. There is a few spots with fallen trees that you will need to go over or under. But overall the trail is very well maintained and easy to navigate.

hiking
8 hours ago

We didn’t have ideal weather which impacts my rating a bit. Extremely foggy and misted a bit but it was still a great, challenging hike. Saw several groups of mountain goats along the way up to and at the peak. The fog did manage to part for about 10 minutes while we were at the top so we could see some of the nearby peaks and the lake below. Down seemed to take a lot longer than up, but that was probably mental because of the weather.

Ice last on north side out of sun
Still quite doable

backpacking
19 hours ago

We did the hike from the lower trailhead. We lucked out with the weather - November 12th and sunny, temps in the mid 40s, but this hike is such a workout that we shed our coats pretty quickly. No snow anywhere on the trail, a few parts were slightly muddy. The first part through the forest is very pleasant, but fairly steep already. After the merge with the upper trail, it becomes very steep, and very rocky. Our lab is pretty fit and used to hiking, but she was not happy crossing one section which is all big rocks (an old rock slide?). Other than that, the trail is wonderfully maintained - fresh log railings and LOTS of rock steps. Beware, what was supposed to be a 5.3 mile hike was really more like 8.9 miles according to our smart watches - and sure felt like it, too! The views from the top are amazing and get progressively better the higher you go, so it's definitely worth it, but next time we may consider leaving the doggo behind.

beautiful hike! Gotta love up hill!

Definitely a workout! Did this hike on Monday (11/13) and it was relatively busy at the top from it being a holiday. My phone recorded round trip about 12 miles, but I’m not sure how accurate this is. The last 0.5 miles are a grind but the view from the top is worth it. Watch for ice patches, poles are a good idea. When we hiked a group of hockey players were taking up a fire hydrant, look for it at the top!!

hiking
1 day ago

Really beautiful hike around this time of the year, this hike offers some of the best views Washington trails has to offer. The lake is starting to freeze up and theres lots of snow and black ice once you start getting to higher elevations so be cautious! I would say this trail falls more on the moderate side than hard, it took us 3 hours to get to the top and 2 hours going back down. Would recommend this hike for everyone!

Pretty stout little hike. Made it up about 3.5 miles then we turned back due to snow and ice. We had trek poles but you probably want to bring some ice gripper if you intend to summit. Couple spots where the trail was washed out up where it was snow covered, not to hard to cross just be careful. Lots of nice running creeks along the way, which I like cuz I will just bring a water bottle, water filtration/treatment device and collect water as needed throughout the day. Hate packing a days worth of water.

trail running
2 days ago

Started right at dawn, ran into lots of snow around mile 3.5 from the trailhead. Fairly quiet on the trail, saw only 10 people and 4 dogs all on my way down. Did the southern peak as well although no visible trail could be found.

great hike!!! lots of stairs!!! went early beat the crowds!!!

A 360 view at the top! First hour is tiring then it actually gets more gradual as you get closer. Today, in November, it had snow about half way up or the last third. it's all packed down though. you don't need spikes but polls are helpful.

This was my second time hiking Mount Ellinor. It was a beautiful hike not as difficult as the last time I hiked it .We had a great day and beautiful views Definitely recommend this hike ..

We took the new trail up and the old trail down which I think was the opposite of what we should have done. The new trail while it takes you longer was a nicely groomed trail while the old trail down was hard on the knees and hips with big steps down through root systems of trees. I am not tall so for me some of these steps were rather large.

Next time I would either do old trail up and new trail down or just stick to the new trail knowing it will take longer. The view at the top was amazing and well worth the hike! It was a little icy today but the sun melted a lot of the ice off the summit!

The only reason I am taking a star off is the lack of signs this trail has. Towards the end my friend and I took a major detour because there were fallen trees and the trail was hidden with snow. We found the lake though! So worth the hike we did it round trip in 4 hours and a half. Very icy towards the end so be careful.

My favorite hike of the year. Lots of snow the last third of the hike. Super sunny day. Stunning.

hiking
4 days ago

Very pretty, easy hike. It's great for a fall/winter hike when the skies aren't as clear. Can't believe how many big and small falls there are.

very cool and well worth the hike. this was our first actual hike so it's hard to measure it against anything. pretty steep incline but we'll marked trails and plenty of stuff to see. people along the way were very friendly. had an unbelievable time.....yes well worth it. ad thank you to those of you who donate your time to keep those trails looking the way they do.

For almost 4K of vertical gain, this trail slope is very gradual. Nice, wide tread the whole way to tree line. The rock steps through the talus field makes navigating to the summit easy. There is snow from about 3800’ up, but is passable without extra traction. Maybe bring a trekking pole for the decent from the summit. Weather supposed to be nice this weekend so I imagine there will be some melting. Views from the summit are dope.

Great Hike.

hiking
9 days ago

The lower trail was really scenic with a nice forest view, I would only do this part once.

The upper trail was AMAZING and very tough during the last stretch of it.. It was pretty hard to find the trail due to the big rocks and the hard incline up. The whole trail had great lookouts. though. The top was really cold, but that was expected. We made the sunset in time.

Definitely one of my favorite hikes ever and I would do the upper trail over and over again

We forgot that daylights savings meant an hour less of sunlight, so we didn’t quite make it all the way to the top, will be doing again :)

hiking
10 days ago

My friend and I, who I'd classify as novice hikers, were able to complete this hike in 7 hours. It took us 4.5 hours up and 2.5 hours down.

We went on Nov. 2nd the conditions were muddy at most. No ice on the trail that we experienced.

There are some seriously beautiful viewpoints on the way up and was well worth it at the end. Unfortunately it was cloudy and rainy so we hope to go back again in the summer to see it all again.

We persevered but I wouldn't recommend this to someone who is totally inexperienced. It was very hard for us. However, a great hike for any seasoned hiker.

In addition, we both recorded approximately 10 miles, not the the listed 7.7 miles.

hiking
10 days ago

This is one of the most beautiful places I’ve seen in my life! The trail is tough but not as hard as some other hikes I’ve done. The views at the top are absolutely worth it, take a day trip and go here. You won’t be disappointed! Also, lots of Chipmunks!

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

trail running
12 days ago

Good technical trail for running. A lot of gain on the way to the top. Will have to come back when its sunny and clear, nothing but most, rain and the occasional frozen rain waves. There are places snow is either on or next to the trail.

hiking
12 days ago

Hiked this trail for the 2nd time yesterday. And as always it was awesome. Trail was dry, had mud in spots but nothing to worry about. Brought a fishing pole up and managed to catch a few rainbow trout. All in all it was a great hike, ass kicker for sure. But worth every bit of it!

hiking
13 days ago

Such a gorgeous hike! One of my favorites

backpacking
14 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!

Hiked up today, there was a fair amount of snow & ice on the trail, but still manageable without any equipment or microspikes. Beautiful views ! I’d read peoples recommendations about high clearance vehicles but I drove to the trailhead just fine in a regular car, so don’t let that deter you.

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