Explore Hikes We Want to Do - 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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hiking
2 days ago

Rocky trail. At first I was looking at the data and wondering why this trail was rated as hard, but it all made sense because of the extremely rocky trail starting at 1 mile from the trailhead. However, the view at the top made it all worthy. We camped near the lookout (it was soooo crowded), and watched the Perseid Meteor Shower!

There was a little stream at 4347 ft, and also a lake on the north side with some distance which was not easily accessible. Otherwise there was no water after you get started on the rocks, so bring enough water on hot days.

This hike is awesomely hard and rocky. Even though the views today were obliterated by smoke from the wildfires (we accidentally missed the media's warning to avoid strenuous outdoor activity), the gorgeous and dynamic rock formations made the effort worth it. We did not see as many people or bugs as previously reported, probably a positive side effect of the smoke. For dog owners: I would recommend this hike to dogs that are used to hiking on rockfaces and unstable surfaces. Our jack russell terrier made it up the mountain like a champ, except we did not take him on the final rock scramble because the rocks were too big and slippery for him to gain the appropriate traction. On a clear day, I can imagine the view from the top is breathtaking.

hiking
4 days ago

This hike was exhilarating! I highly recommend everyone try it at least once. We went on August 12, which was a little overcast. Check the weather before you go so that you hike on a day to meet your expectations. An overcast day keeps you cooler, but you will miss some of the views. Overcast worked for me, as I skipped some of the trails the closer we got to the top. For an extra challenge try some boulder jumping. This was an amazing experience!

hiking
5 days ago

Great adventure with the kids (7, 14, 16). 2 mile hike was fun going in. We enjoyed all the things people left to show us the way. Waterfall was amazing. We had fun splashing around the pool of water for a good hour before heading back. Beautiful! Enjoyed by all.

Oh sweet Jesus this was challenging! Mostly because it was so hot! Went on Wed Aug 8 and it HOT! But what a beautiful hike and views at the top we’re worth it... I went alone but in hindsight might have been good to have company... I appreciated the meditative time with nature.. Enjoy!

The intensity level reflects what is stated on the site, HARD. I’m new to hiking and this hike was very rigorous and exhausting. I’m not in the best shape and I have asthma so I took many breaks on my way up. My legs started giving up once I was almost at the lookout but a group of hikers let me borrow their trekking pole. You definitely meet nice people when hiking :)

Tips:
- Bring bug spray, you don’t really feel the mosquitos and flies unless you stop.
- Drive VERY carefully on the last 6 miles before arriving at the parking lot as the dirt/gravel road is filled with a lot of potholes.
- Wear hiking shoes as you are walking over LOTS of rocks.
- You need a parking permit (Northwest Forest Pass), which you can purchase at Verlot Public Service Center for $5.
- Bring plenty of water and a snack.
- Take breaks as needed.

hiking
8 days ago

I went on the 4th of July. I lucked out with parking. Judging by the amount of cars, I considered not going but was able to get a parking spot at the trailhead. Based on the amount of cars, I was pleasantly surprised to not really meet up with too many people for the about the first mile. The rocks weren't as bad as the roots as people have mentioned. I wouldn't take little kids but I saw plenty trekking without a problem. I had a dog and encountered about 18 others throughout the day. All but one were on leashes. The mud greets you near the top. I'd say the last half mile. The worst part were the bugs at the top. I didn't notice them once I crossed the wood planked walkway. definitely be prepared. Beautiful, relatively easy hike. I'd defi do it again.

hiking
9 days ago

easy to find, well maintained, mostly shaded moderate hike. would definitely do it again. nice little lake at the top to stop and eat lunch.

Aug 6,2018. Another wonderful day with nature. But the road going there was awful, it was like crater in the moon! So drive safely. And don’t forget to bring bugspray, you’ll thank me later. Lol.

As always, view at the top is breathtaking. But definitely not for beginners.

I love this hike for the amazing work out and AMAZING view at the top but there are a couple things to know:

1)The potholes on the road were awful! Enormous potholes everywhere so you have to drive pretty slowly and carefully which takes quite a while.

2) The mosquitos were REALLY BAD! Bring bug spray for sure! They are swarming everywhere, even at the top! Flies were pretty dense too but avoid mosquito bites and bring some spray!

NOT A BEGINNERS HIKE!!! Beautiful exciting views all the way up. Definitely a leg burner

The destination is the only good thing about this trail. But if it’s busy, it’s not going to be good. The swimming hole is very small with room for 4-6 people. So if you’re the only people there, awesome! Getting there.... you’re walking down a gravel road 90% of the time. I wouldn’t really call this a hike.

hiking
11 days ago

Huge potholes on the way to the trail head, take an SUV or truck if you have one, if not it will take forever and a half!

The hike up we lost the trail a couple of times. You wont get very far off trail though, keep an eye out for the plastic markers to stay on trail. Trekking poles are recommended, as they helped a ton!

The hike up is steep, so be mentally prepared. You’ll make your way up until you hit some logs laying down, go up and then you seem like you lose the trail. You can either go straight up, or take a right. Both will get you to where you’re going. Once you’re almost to the lake, you’ll come to a spot where you can go left or right, and on the right will be pink plastic bits tied to a tree branch, around eye level. GO RIGHT! Its approx. 1/4 a mile till the lake. Once you’re here though, put on your bug spray before you get to the water.

Once you go right, there’ll be some nice spots to see a pond and the moutains over yonder. You’ll keep going till you see purple wildflowers on the ground, and then you’ll see a pond. You’ll think this pretty thing of water is the lake, but keep going and you’ll reach the lake.

The pond has a pretty spot if you veer to the left to sit and eat some snacks for a minuet while looking at the trees and a small meadow! Once you’re done here, the lake is right around the corner. Its very rocky at the lake, but beautiful nontheless.

The hike down will feel like nothing. Its surprisingly easy going down than going up. The potholes going back to civilization are not any easier. You can’t win at everything!

hiking
11 days ago

Beautiful!! I’m a fairly experienced hiker but this is one of the tougher ones I’ve done. We went at dusk and ended up having to hike back at dark with a little one on our backs which made it feel a lot more intimidating. The scramble at the top is no joke but is completely doable. The scenery is absolutely breathtaking.

hiking
12 days ago

Was here a few days ago. The road to the trailhead is very poor, lots of potholes that took a bit to maneuver in my little car (others with trucks and 4WDs flew by with no issue however). The trail was actually fairly easy to follow with orange signposts along the way, however if you’re not paying attention it would be pretty easy to take a wrong turn and wind up going the wrong way so be alert. I wore bug repellent and had no issues. It was a beautiful trail, only a few people up the top when I summited ~10am however passed many groups on their way up when I was descending so if you want a quiet trail best to go in the morning I would say.

did this trail October 2017. went with a group of 4, which was a good size. it was cool in temperature but no one in the lake. cool rock wall at the lake.

hiking
12 days ago

Challenging and very worth it. It took us about five hours to do the trail including around the lake. We saw some fresh bear scat on the other side of the lake.

Cool Misty day, bugs were not a problem. The road going up was!! Dirt road for first 4.7 miles. In about the worst condition l have seen a popular Forest Service road. Then paved the last 1.8 miles with one 15 foot dirt path with about a 4 to 6 inch drop. Trail was as expected with about 4 short snow patches. Got to have good knees.

hiking
14 days ago

Thimble berries and huckleberries season is open, the snack bars line the trail. This trail is shaded and a good choice if it is hot. I found it moderate/hard as there are a lot of tricky steps with roots or rocks and hiking sticks helped a great deal. Looks like the Gardener was hard at work, the trail around the lake is lined with ferns and charming Bunch Berry in bloom. A swim in the clear water was the best reward and the GREEN is a balm to the eyes. You will love it! A perfect wedding anniversary hike!

hiking
14 days ago

Swimming is perfect! Huckleberries, thimble berries and salmon berries snack bar is open. Twin Flowers line the trail and Alpine Meadow Groundsel fringes the lake (could someone please confirm identity)
Malo potholes, "if they drive straight they must be drunk", saying from Costa Rica applies.

Great little hike hard on your vehicle's wonderful swim at the lake much warmer than I thought it would be!

Great hike and a beautiful view. I jumped in the lake and it was cold but felt so good from the hike.

hiking
16 days ago

Last did this hike in 1977, Wonderful views. Going back this year.

Tough trail but manageable with hiking sticks. It's definitely not a beginner trail. The uneven terrain with rocks and roots going uphill on the way to the lake was quite an adventure. But on the way back it's all downhill!!

Heather Lake is hard to find! For those who have never been there, you need to enter the Pilchuck Access Road, and Heather Lake Trail Head is up the road, with the Pulchuck Trail Head further up. The road going up has huge potholes, so drive slow.

This trail is rated moderate, but would rate it moderate/hard. It’s fairly steep and is all tree roots, rocks, and more boulders! Most of the hike is tree covered until you get to the lake.

Once at the top, the lake is very nice. It’s not as clear or pretty as others, but still pretty enough with the mountains and waterfalls behind, and worth doing. I jumped in for a swim and it felt amazing!

Make sure to have your National Forest Pass with you. And bring bug spray! Misquotes and flies were horrible!

hiking
18 days ago

One of the best hikes i've had all summer. Do not underestimate this trail, you will need to pace yourself. As far as the view, second to none. It was well worth the couple hour hike. Down side is the bugs, stop and you get eaten.

The trail starts out moderately easy and then gets difficult... lots of rocky terrain with amazing views all along the way. Took about 2 hours to get up the trail and 1 hour to come back down. Keep in mind you will literally be climbing your way to the top of the mountain. We took our corgi and he made it up all the way :) it’s best if you get there around 7am to avoid the heat and the crowds. Bring lots of bug repellent!

The road up to the trail head was pretty rough on my car that doesn't have shocks >.< My family and I went for a late afternoon hike, starting about 3pm and there was 75 people that had already did the trail :) per the trail registrar however our hike wasn't very crowded at all! The trail was pretty moderate with its incline with lots of spots where roots and rocks will become your stairs! The views at the top are breath taking and the water felt great!

I suggest a Truck or SUV. The road up has deep pot holes.

Some areas of the trail are difficult to find. Watch for tape markers it can help you navigate your way to the top and back.

Tons of blood sucking bugs. Be prepared.

Excellent view. Pleasant weather. Right time to go.

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