Explore 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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backpacking
4 days ago

Snow packed trail on upper section towards the lookout. Hiking boots were sufficient

12/8/18
Took the lower trail out and upper trail back. Definitely recommend taking both trails as on the lower you get views of the river and upper you get better views of the mountains. Upper trail is a bit longer so be prepared for that if you use it for the way back. Both are well maintained and it's a fairly easy hike.
The lake is absolutely stunning and views of the mountains and waterfalls won't disappoint!
Still now snow cover as of date above, although some icy spots during stream crossings. Mountain loop highway has no snow as well. Dirt portion is in a bit of rough shape so low cars might struggle with all the pot holes.

hiking
5 days ago

Came here at the end of June. Ranger recommended this trail as it was very cloudy at hurricane ridge. According to him, who completed this trail numerous times, we'd get some beautiful views of the lake. About a mile into the hike, it started to get foggy then worse and worse as we progressed. By the time we reached the lake, it was not visible at all. To add salt to injury, there were hordes of mosquitoes near the water.

We didn't run into many people on the trail. Ran into a very cute deer on our way up. The fog and mossy trees made it a very eerie hike, as if we were hiking in a scary movie. Moisture in the air gave us a good facial. We left with very smooth skin.

Great view at the top. Snow halfway up. Was deep and windy near the top

Did this hike today, no snow, very flat, just really long. There were a couple of little creeks to pass over, nothing crazy. We didn't finish the hike, it would have been dark by the time we got back and we waited to be leaving before it got dark. I would definitely plan on leaving earlier next time. Only saw a few people didn't seem to be a very popular hike but it was very well kept, looked like it was recently serviced! Other than a few potholes on the way up the road to the trailhead and our poor time management it was a pretty nice hike.

It was a moderate trail. The switchbacks were a bit challenging in damp conditions.

hiking
17 days ago

This was a bucket list hike for me. This hike is by no means easy, it is one of the shortest hikes I have done all year with the longest for me drive time. The road is washed out so you have to hike two or 3 miles to the trailhead. I did this hike in October 2018. I'm glad I did this hike but definitely not one of my favorite hikes of the year. The trail is very narrow and steep up hill until you get to the first lake where it flattens out a bit. Before you get to the first lake you have to crawl over a 6ft or so rock wall. to get to blanca lake (which is a day use only area) it is a steep, treacherous descent. I saw a lot of people on this trail mainly when I was leaving and a couple who didn't think the trail was going to be that hard. When i visited in October there was ice at the lake and the shores of the lake were a lot on the stinky side. This place is very beautiful, but very hard hiking. There is a bathroom at the true trailhead, but it was locked when I visited due to the road washout. Bring lots of water, snacks and electrolytes, you will definitely need it. I would not recommend this trail for anyone new to hiking, families or anyone out of shape.

So I rarely give 5 stars to anything. I loved this hike. Something interesting to see at pretty much every step with variety and beauty. Starts with nice forest and a beautiful river with multiple waterfalls. Then you break out to beautiful rugged views and rock fields in avalanche chutes. Meadows and old growth throughout. Wonderful views of Mt Baker along the way and the Olympics at the top. It is strenuous, and a constant climb. Per our garmins 5.6 miles each way to marmot pass. But so worth it. The day we went was beautiful and clear.

Perhaps the most impressive and accessible view of Baker you can get! This hike offers a great variety of fun – a river crossing, meadows, and forests. This hike isn't that hard, there's one moderate climb about halfway through, but once out of the treeline, the scenery is incredible. Fall colors are everywhere in September and early October, with Baker constantly overhead. Both the fire lookout and Railroad Grade are amazing.

Done it twice. ready to do it again!

hiking
25 days ago

This is a great hike. I went yesterday with my husband, our 7 year old and 3 year old and a couple friends. The drive up is pretty rough for about 5-6 miles. You will need a vehicle with good ground clearance or take the drive up very slow. The trail was very Icey in some parts. We ended up busting our butts on the trail a couple times. If you are taking a little one this time of year, I recommend putting them in a hiking carrier. Beautiful views from the trail and definitely an incline on the way up. We were feeling the burn. Snow and ice on parts of the trail and at the top. The view of Summit Lake was beautiful. The lake is so clear. The hike was worth it just to see the scenic view from the overlook and to see the lake. It was breathtaking. This wasn't a very busy trail. We saw only a couple people during our hike an this was during the morning to afternoon.

hiking
26 days ago

High clearance and decent tires are your safest bet getting to the TH, I made it in my Chevy Cruze though, so make good judgment calls before heading to this trail. Beautiful day on the trail and amazing views at the lake and above! Compact snow is very icy!

My first major summit. It's a hard climb, but worth it at the top.

hiking
27 days ago

One of the best hikes I’ve ever done. Challenging but worth it. Road is washed out so it’s 2 miles to trailhead. From trailhead you climb 3000 feet in right over 3 miles. At 3.2ish you’ll reach virgin lake, it was frozen over today (11/17). From virgin lake it’s all downhill to Blanca lake, about 0.82 miles. Snow was packed down but yactracks and poles were super helpful.

hiking
1 month ago

Stunning hike! Highly recommend. The drive up is pretty rough but it’s worth it.

hiking
1 month ago

Great long hike with rewarding views at the end. There are beautiful waterfalls along the way.

Awesome. That’s all that needs to be said.

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.

Super day out there! Nice and sunny and trail was good. I would obviously still recommend mountain gear, poles, crampons etc. it was a great day! Trails were great!

Sumitted November 8th!... a bit chilly, but no wind at the top, and amazing sunny views! Definitely appreciated crampons near the summit. This is a challenging hike! I am an avid hiker and runner and my body hurts in ways it rarely does 2 days later... but well worth it!!

backpacking
1 month ago

Hiked this with my son in September. This is a great hike for all ages and levels.

hiking
1 month ago

Absolutely stunning. We did this hike in a day that was supposed to be rainy but for the most part there were no rain. The trail was very beautiful, it was among these trees, mosses, fallen leaves and ferns. It was one of the most beautiful trails I've seen in Washington.
The hike is super moderate and the gain is very gradual. We did the loop, taking the Upper Elliot trail hiking up and Lower Elliot trail hiking down. My AllTrails app says 11.4 miles total. We walked around the lake too.
At this time of year, there were many waterfalls on the way up and also around the lake itself. All were really gorgeous. I should also mention, we took highway 530 and the tree colors were really beautiful.

trail running
1 month 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.

It's a continuous climb the whole way. Never too intense, though. And the views across the valley at the top are incredible. Late October it was cloudy, and a couple inches of snow at the top.

Great trail! Very rainy and foggy, but still amazing views and flora. It is longer than the beta shows. I got kind of confused between the water washes and the trail near the top and my phones GPS was not reading correctly.

The views are amazing! So worth the trip, logged about 8 miles and got snowed out. A cold but fun night.

hiking
1 month ago

this was probably one of the hardest hikes i’ve done. it starts out flat for about a mile and then it’s just straight up the entire way. when you think you’re almost there you have about another mile to go. the basin was beautiful and gorgeous and while we were up there a person fell off the ledges of the hike and had to be airlifted out of there so i really suggest being careful when you’re up there! the hike kicked my butt but it was beautiful!

Very windy at the top but well worth the hike to the top , wish it was much clearer. Started at 7 am and was done by 11 pm .

I havent hiked in 25 yrs.this was my 2nd hike in a few months an it kicked my butt.i do have some lung disease.but it was so beautiful an the scenery was breathtaking..

hiking
1 month ago

hiked this about month ago and the trail was not hard the climb to buckhorn lake was long switch backs but well worth the hike just for the views

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