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This one has been on my list and we couldn’t have had a more beautiful day for it (11/18/18). Hiked the new trail up and back down, I don’t think my knees could have taken the old trail from what I hear. Pretty brutal last 1/2 mike until you reach the Peak but no question, worth it all! Gorgeous views of the PNW.

We did this hike on Mothers Day. We took the old trail up & new trail down..wear proper shoes for the down hill. Amazing accomplishment....hardest
one for me so far

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!!

Great Hike.

hiking
24 days ago

10/28/18 Rainy day for a hike but great none the less! We took the new trail both ways. It was longer than the 8.4 mile loop from all trails. Our phone apps all said 13.1 miles, but who knows. It was steady uphill climb, but totally doable. We took breaks for water and snacks. When we got to the rock field toward the top the temperature dropped and the wind picked up. Right near the summit we had sideways rain/snow mix. It was a little scary at times since we were out in the open. While it was foggy and cloudy and rainy most of the rest of the time, it was a great hike! We are planning on going in the early summer again to see all the views.

The new trail is pretty straight up, with no straightaways. I was basically bear crawling up half of it. Definitely felt it the next two days after completing it, but it was well worth the views :).

Did this hike yesterday (Oct. 21). We took the old trail up and new trail down to save our knees. It was a perfect cloudless Sunday for this hike. There are parts on the old trail where it is a little hard to navigate, nothing to where you cant find the trail again though. It was definitely more steep than the new trail, but if im being honest i wish i would have taken the old trail up and down. The new trail is a bit longer than the old trail but not as steep. Plenty of people on this trail as well. Both on the old and new trail. Also, great veiws at the top. The workout is worth it.

I did small potion only 13 mile of the trail , it was great weather today 10/21/18 and fantastic view

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful lake, it’s much more enjoyable than Snow Lake. There is a huge drop off in people on the trail after you pass Snow Lake. Trail is very well maintained.

Follow Wes’ route, the default route will get you lost

Amazing!!!! Spectacular views of the huge craggy mountain peaks, glaciers and Hidden Lake. Meadow has really pretty fall foliage coloring right now. We hiked yesterday, Oct 18th, and temps were perfect. Barely any snow - did not need crampons. Trail started getting muddy in the afternoon. Hiked at a moderate pace and took us 5.5 hrs (with 1.25 hrs spent sitting at the summit overlooking the lake).

Drive to/from trailhead off of Cascade River Rd is as bad as the other reviews say. Guessing it took us 45 min to get up & 30 min on way down. Gets dark early these days! Bring a headlamp if you're starting late!

hiking
1 month ago

No bugs, just a few nice people, a perfect alpine lake. What more do you want?

Obstacles include mud at the bottom followed by a very steep climb up to Rachel and then the fork to Lila / Rampart / Alto. It’s a full click more rugged than trails with more switchbacks and better trail work.

Warning is I got confused on leaving Lila lake as there’s several trails out, so be sure to have a map. One option is screen shots of the all trails map, or of course buying all trails pro. There’s no cell service out there and very few people on a weekday, so be ready to be self sufficient. Apple had “helpfully” offloaded my compass app so I was without that. The ground at Lila is partly frozen so I imagine an unprepared overnight would not be fun. Fortunately I figured it out by back tracking and got to the car at nightfall.

Amazing views. Went there on the perfect weekend. Snow had accumulated in the morning. Not much. We started the hike at 12.30pm. Snow had pretty much melted. Took us, amateurs, 3.5 hours to reach the lookout. Elevation was definitely felt. Beautiful fall red colors. Hike would definitely need more expertise when snow starts accumulating.

Did this hike in August, it’s a nice hike however you don’t have views till you literally reach the top. The rock scrimmage wasn’t bad, it was the loose dirt after the scrimmage for .60 miles that was a tad scary.

It took us 2hr 45 min up, we cruised up averaged 24 minutes it is steep and consistent up, but I don’t think this hike was extreme. Its hard at the top but not a hard hike.

The top was full of bugs around the mailbox, it was gross, I think someone put food inside.

I would do this hike again just for the view at the top.

My husband, dog and I hiked this yesterday (10/14). The weather conditions were perfect at a cool 45°, not a cloud in the sky, and no wind; all of which I find pretty amazing for the middle of October in the Cascades.

We started at 12:05, reached the lookout at 3:00, started descending at 3:30, and reached the vehicle by 6:10.

I loved the different layers of this hike; dense forest, uncovered meadows blanketing the slopes, boulder fields dotting the top, and a challenging scramble to reach your destination.

There were a few pockets of snow and on our descent, the top half of the trail was a muddy mess, otherwise it was very manageable. The few morning hikers we met mentioned seeing a mama bear and her cub in the meadow above the trail but we didn't see them. Also for any fur parents, my 40 lbs. lab mix did not fair well with rock scrambling to the lookout and down.

All in all, I really enjoyed it. The worst part was the brutal 4 mile road to the trail head.

What an amazing hike, one of my favorite’s so far in Washington! It’s a calf/quad/booty burner and there’s a considerable scramble to the lookout, but it’s so worth it. The views from the lookout are breathtaking! The only thing I’d say is that the road to the trailhead is rough, covered in potholes. Get there early as the parking lot is small and the road to the trailhead isn’t wide, so it’s tough to park on the road before the trail. A must-do hike!

hiking
1 month ago

October 13, 2018. Hiked up the old trail and down the new trail to try and save my knees. The 4,000 elevation gain was great for getting the heart rate up which I love. The 360° view at the top was beautiful. I could see Mt. Rainier, Mt. Baker, and Glacier Peak. Lots of people at the top. Met a friend down at the parking lot and hiked the whole way with him. Even went on an extra adventure from Mailbox Peak to Dirty Box Peak. Today was beautiful with blue skies and a high of 63°. Didn’t need more than a t-shirt...and extra deodorant ;) Enjoy!

Had a great trip up the old trail, over to Dirty Box Peak (just for fun), and back down the new trail. Weather couldn't have been more perfect and made a new hiking friend along the way. Views were awesome today!!

hiking
1 month ago

Amazing colours. Not lots of people. No bugs. A bit muddy. Better to wear waterproof walking boots.
At Rachel lake, got a bit lost but found the trail to Lila lake. Look for a small sitting area just before reaching the edge of the lake. There is a sign with “trail” written on it. I was alone at Lila lake. Just beautiful. A bit cold up there in spite of the sun.

Awesome views! Had a great time in the lookout

hiking
1 month ago

Went up the Old trail and down the new trail. Be warned, the old trail is VERY difficult and slippery when wet. The views from the top are OK.

Hiked on Saturday 10/6. About half way up there was snow on the ground. Microspikes were helpful since there was some ice as well. It was a clear day so the view was absolutely breathtaking. If you want to hike this, make sure you do it very soon before the trail gets too snowy! Definitely best to do this on a sunny and clear day. The trail is pretty much up hill the whole way but it isn’t horrible since it’s a shorter trail. Minor scramble at the top. My dogs are normally pretty good scrambling on boulders but this one made them very nervous, especially with the snow.

Freaking awesome hike! It was pretty overcast the day I went and it’s crazy going through the clouds at the top. A little scary to be honest bc the fog is so thick that if you got off the rock path you could be lost forever..but worth the pic at the top :)

Less busy than storm castle, better views

Beautiful

Beautiful!!!!

Hiked the trail Saturday morning — old trail on the way up and new on the way down. Brought our dog with us and he met many a furry friend on the way up (and down). All of us, dog included, were tuckered out by the time we got to the top. Our ascent was lightly trafficked, and we saw quite a few more hikers on the new trail on the way down. The new trail appears to be much more popular, but we decided to take that on the way down to spare our knees. It took us a little over 2 hours to climb and 2.5 hours on the way down. Overall great hike.

backpacking
1 month ago

Definitely worth going to extra distance to Gem Lake from Snow Lake. Very pretty and a good place to stop for lunch.

What an amazing hike! A lot of up to start, but worth making it to the top. Amazing fall colors, saw a black bear, scenery is stunning all the way up, and had great views of both Mt. Baker and Glacier Peak! The road would be a little tough for anyone not in a high clearance vehicle. Overall though, just stunning.

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