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Simply INCREDIBLE!! We won the permit lottery and were fortunate enough to spend three amazing days backpacking through the enchantments in late August.

Our itinerary was as follows
-Day 1 Enter through Colchuck TH-Colchuck Lake-Aasgard pass-into the Core, camping in the core
-Day 2 Exploring the core (highly recommend!), camped in Leprechaun Lake (stunning!)
-Day 3 Descended out of the core and exited through snow lake

I have hiked probably 50 ish hikes since moving to Washington and this was by far my favourite HANDS DOWN. Once you enter the core it is like a whole different world up there-alpine lakes, mountains, sheer cliff faces, moss covered rocks and small wildflowers, goats..I could go on.

Some words of advice particularly for those backpacking
-pack for ALL conditions. It snowed on our first night in August!
-start early, once you are in the core it never seems like you have enough time there
-though rare we did see a bear coming down through snow lake, so be warned
-there is plenty of water around, no need to carry much..especially up Aasgard
-Aasgard is rough, especially with a 30lb pack on. Take your time and enjoy the view
-the good camp sites fill up early. Move camp early and get established, then go exploring

I’m so fortunate to have backpacked here and I encourage everyone to do the same..apply for the lottery!!!

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
1 day 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
2 days 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!

hiking
2 days 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!

Beautiful trail! Not too hard getting up as it only takes an hour to get to the ridge views. Made it up in hiking shoes only although it was snowy throughout and a bit icy. The views are worth every minute! Definitely doing this one again soon.

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 ..

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.

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.

hiking
10 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
11 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
11 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!

hiking
12 days ago

I’ve done this hike 6 times now. It has to be done on a beautiful day. Mid-summer is perfect as long as it’s clear. Training is important if you aren’t an avid hiker. Starting out at a slower pace helps make the whole hike enjoyable. Bring a large garbage bag to slide down the many trails. You’re on snow for about half of it.

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

hiking
14 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!

backpacking
15 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.

Seemed further than the 7 miles listed. Hiked the trail 10/29/18 very went and muddy with quite a bit of snow and ice halfway up. Views were well worth the pain in the butt.

backpacking
16 days ago

Did this hike with a buddy the day after the first snow. We were optimistic in how much snow but surprised to be up to our waist in some spots. We spent only one night at the top of Asgard pass in our tent. Coming up the Asgard pass was extremely difficult even for us and we are in very good shape. We had to be careful not to go off track as the Cairns were difficult to see buried under the snow. GPS was a must for us. We did our best to uncover some cairns. The heavy snow started just before Colchuck and ended after Lake Viviane. Snow varies between 1foot and 3 feet in depth. Be careful of the snow drifts and falling through to the streams and rocks below. My buddy fell through a crack into a stream below and was up to his chest to crawl out. Micro spikes are a must as sheets of ice over water and rocks were slippery. The views were absolutely spectacular and surreal. We have never seen anything like it before. Especially the sunrise at the top. Words and pictures could never ever do it justice.

Late entry from Fall last year. It was amazing views of Baker, and Mount Shuksan. It was clear day that day. Amazing views at the summit. It was worth it every sweats and to be rewarded with such of beauty..
The signs were pretty visible from the main highway. 12 miles of dirt road to the trailhead. Very narrow dirt roads and uphills. Compact car is doable. 4000 ft to the trailhead. And it’s about 6000 ft or more to hike to the summit.

Awesome

hiking
17 days 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!

hiking
18 days ago

Drove up in a SUV, drove slower to avoid the potholes. Saw some cars in the parking lot, so doable. In a previous comment, someone mentioned it is more like a walk. It is not. Right off the bat, you start with a 2 mile climb to the first ridge., approximately 1 hour up. Definitely not a beginner’s hike. The views from the ridge are spectacular. You can continue for another 2.5 miles, climbing on and off to the top ridge ( another hour or less).
We had sunny skies, clouds coming in as we left. Would highly recommend this hike!

hiking
19 days ago

Superb hike with great view of Mt Baker.

We randomly woke up Friday (10/26) morn and decided to head up! It was really warm here in Arlington! Got to the trailhead at 9am and reached the peak at 11! As we slowly (so many terrible potholes)descended up the road it started to get very windy and the fog was so irie! The different landscapes were so beautiful and the trail very wet, we pretty much walked in water the whole time but no big deal! The saddest part was this was my first time and the fog never cleared and covered the whole view :( We were alone all morning and didn't see another group till we were half way down, then we passed 4 more groups all clumped up! Overall it was a perfectly irie October day, but I will be going back on a clear day to see the view I missed!

Did this a few weeks ago with my fiancé it’s was amazing... one of my bucket list hikes soooo worth it but it took much longer then I thought it would... I will do it again next year!! Maybe summit in 2020...

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