Explore lakes - 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
15 hours ago

The fitbit said 10.64 miles and 2970 feet elevation gain. Parking lot to parking lot.

We planned on this being our lighter hike of the trip and only doing the Denny Creek trail but ended up going all the way to the lake. This may have been my favorite in the end. We had some beautiful views along the way and a great variety of scenery. The falls, creek, woods and a good amount of wildlife. Several Pika, frogs and chipmunks were spotted. Turned out to be a perfect way to end our time in the mountains.

hiking
1 day ago

Challenging. If the weather isn’t great - there’s not going to be much of a view of the lake. I would do it again on a clear day.

hiking
2 days ago

In town for work and decided to go hiking, 'cause you know, I could use some exercise. It is a tough hike if you are out shape. But, it is worth it. The parking lot, as everyone else mentions is packed. I got there around 8:30 and had to park about 20 yards down the road so there is a lot of traffic on the trail. Well worth it, though. If you are looking for good pics. later in the day is better to have the sun at your back for the views of the surrounding peaks. The trail goes around the lake but it can be lost at times so you may have to bushwhack it a little. While I may be walking pretty slow tonight and I look a little funny walking, the hike is worth it. Definitiely recommend it.

hiking
2 days ago

Easily the best day hike near Seattle! We got there a little late in the day, around noon. The parking lot was full so we parked about half mile away from the trail head. The hike starts off easy, the first 1.5 miles are easy but beware of roots and rocks. Once you cross the Stuart and colchuck lake intersection, the trail gets a little harder. The last patch gets pretty rocky. The views are amazing! We went on a sunny day, although it was cold and windy near the lake. I didn’t think the hike was hard as such, more like a long moderate hike. Also, seems like the trail is longer than the distance on all trails. My tracker showed 9.8 miles out and back. This didn’t include the walk around the lake or the walk from my car to the trailhead. It took us 3 hours up and 2 hours back down. Amazing hike! Definitely go for it!

Great post-Labor Day time for a hike, thought the lot was still just full when we arrived around 9:00.
TRAIL - Good steady uphill on a fairly rocky trail, but it is kept up perfectly given the obvious traffic this thing gets. As you can see from the recordings, the thing gets a little sporty at the end. I'm 55 and in okay shape, but my heart didn't get worked so hard I couldn't speak.
LAKE - crazy color to that water, even with overcast lighting. Lots of places to take some lunch and explore, with a great flat rock just left(south) of center when you get to the lake.
OVERALL - wonderful view, no bugs, cool weather; what's not to love

I went today, pulled up to the TH at 10:30am, only 2 other cars parked. Took an hour & half to get to the lake, steep uphill trail, slick on a rainy day. Visibility was incredibly low but still was a beautiful lake well worth the elevation gain!!

Amazing lake!!

This hike was pretty disappointing once you get to the end, I probably should have read more reviews before we went. You get little glimpses of the beautiful lake. I don’t know about everyone else but I’m not a fan of hiking to see a Dam and power lines. The trail was nice though and we did see some little snakes. By the trailhead you can go swimming in the lake and it is beautiful (better than my hiking views

This is one of the best hikes in this area - and probably the best day hike. We did this along with Stuart Lake and the mountain views and the water color were breathtaking

so gorgeous!

hiking
9 days ago

This was my very first hike and the fellas and i really had no idea what we were in for .. If you aren't a regular hiker (like myself) and aren't in top shape , be prepared to push yourself harder than you ever have . The trail was beautiful, the views were beautiful . There are some very steep areas that will test your quads . Personally i had to take lots of little breaks to let my legs recharge . It was hard mentally and physically to accomplish but well worth it in the end. It was a great accomplishment. It was just under 12 km from where we Parked so about 23.5 km round trip ! My biggest regret was not having buying hiking poles.. it WILL save your legs

One of my favorite hikes in the PNW. It's a very popular trail, so get there early. Leave yourself at least 5 hours to complete the trail, but give yourself more time if you want to stay at the lake for a bit. Try to go on a sunny day as the water looks a brighter shade of blue in the sunlight.

This is an amazing hike worth every step. I highly recommend this trail.

A tough hike but well worth it once you leave the switchbacks and forests behind. The views of the surrounding mountains is the warm up for getting to see Blanca Lake. It truly is worth the gruel and I will do it again when the seasons change in a few weeks. Two things 1) Don't give up and 2) coming down takes half the time it takes to get up.

hiking
16 days ago

Trash Everywhere!

First I need to say how disappointed I am with the hikers using Washington trails! I watched volunteers spending an entire day cleaning trash from this one trail. It took a team of people the entire day to pick up trash that should never have been left in the first place. Very Sad.

If your going to hike this or any other Washington State trail take your trash out with you. If you see some disrespectful hiker leaving trash say something.

And to all you pet owners! If your dog poops don’t put it in a bag and toss the bag off the trail. Seriously, what is wrong with you people.

If you can’t show respect for other hikers and the environment, stay off the trail.

This is the second most beautiful thing I've seen this year! The first was female so I don't think that's a fair comparison. I had to hold back my emotions, I'm a man of course, I was just not prepared for how stunning this lake was in person. This is something you must see for yourself.

The lake is not made of a non-nutonian fluid, I tried walking on it and I sank.That's how my pictures came out so awesome!

If you're not quite sure if you have bad knees or not... You'll definitely know after this hike! LOL

Don't forget to see the falls at the end of the trail. I got in the water to take some pictures from the other side.

I enjoyed this hike. One of my favorites. However the hike down to the lake and back was closer to 11.5 miles.

Amazing experience. Will visit again.

Great hike with lots of changing scenery. It got busier as the day went with other hikers coming in as we were going out. Hardly a bug to be seen.

'Northwest Forest Pass' required for parking. I think you can get them for 5$ right at the parking lot, our vehicle already has one.

Trail begins wide and meanders thru the forest. It's loud due to the highway above you but this quickly fades. The trail will come alongside Denny Creek and then stairs will lead you right to the creek. You have to cross here and look for the small sign on a tree. More forest and then it opens up. Next you'll see Keekwulee Falls. Alternating forest and open rock switchbacks. We had low cloud for the hike in, and then the sky cleared while we had lunch at the lake. The second lake pathway runs to the left side of the main lake, only takes a few minutes to get there.

hiking
18 days ago

This trail is very difficult but worth the effort! I would recommend going on a weekday and starting early in the morning. We started at 8:45am and arrived at the lake at 12:00pm. (I took several short breaks along the way!) We spent about an hour at the lake relaxing and refueling. The trip back was almost as difficult as getting to the lake. Because of the steep incline, it can be hard on the knees. The blueberry bushes are ripe and ready to eat along the trail. The mosquitoes and flies were out but not too bothersome. This is definitely a trail that shouldn’t be passed up.

Super fun, but busy hike. Parking was a mess and there was a lot of people. Beware of livestock as well (keep dogs on leash).

So hard. So beautiful..

hiking
20 days ago

Incline don’t miss leg day. Breath taking worth the hike.

Awesome hike! Arrived at parking lot around 8:30 and it was 95% full. Started out on the trail around 8:45. They need one of those jumping deer signs as we scared up a couple of deer and they jumped! Watch out for the tree roots that seem to be alive. We stopped counting the number of times we tripped. The lake is gorgeous. The hike was tough (we are in our mid 50s), but very doable. We were out about 4 1/2 hours with a 30 minute break at the lake and picture breaks along the way.

hiking
22 days ago

Such an amazing hike! We took the ferry which left at 3:00 P.M. to the other side of the trail. My group and I are fast walkers so we finished the hike in about 2.5-3 hours but we did wander quite a bit off the trail. It’s up hill to start but has moments of flat and downhill. I do have to say the views are absolutely breathtaking from this hike. However if you are afraid of heights do note this has thin parts right next to the edge. The water bellow is so blue green that it’s worth every second!

hiking
22 days ago

one of my favorite trails. the trail is in amazing condition. lots of people camped out at virgin lake and the blue berries were all over the sides of the trail.

Watch out for the bees!

hiking
22 days ago

We started from the car at 9:55AM (parked right near the road closed sign) and made our way up the road. At 10:38 we started the actual hike, the signage at that point states 3.5 miles to Blanca lake. We made it to the lake at 3:00PM (approx 4.5 hours to get there). Such a beautiful spot! Amazingly Mint green water! Make the plunge it is cold but so rewarding! We went all the way down to the second lake lookout on the actually water and relaxed on the logs. On the way back we made sure to turn on our mileage calculator so we could let y’all know the distance. It took us 3 hours to get down (back to the car at about 7PM). All in all we were prepped for 13 miles plus the road washout 4 miles... this info is not accurate!!! It was a little over 12 miles in total including road washout! (6.1 miles each way!) Enjoy guys!

hiking
23 days ago

We are staying in Leavenworth and it was a quick trip to the trail head. The road up was a bit rough on my fiesta, but doable. We parked in the first lot due to reviews. But we got there around 745 and it wasn’t too busy yet.

Overall it is one of the more scenic hikes I have been on. Gorgeous views. It took us a solid 1.5 hours to get up there with some fairly steep terrain.

Let me tell you, when you arrive at the lake, your mind will be blown. Just gorgeous. We jumped in and talk about...cold! But so worth it.

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