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Beautiful day up there! A little muddy in places but not bad at all.

Make no mistake, unlike many other hard-rated hikes on this website, this one is actually hard. An information board in one of the ranger centers rated it as extremely strenuous, and while I'm not sure about the "extreme" part, "strenuous" is definitely an apt description.
You start straight off with the hardest part - very steep switchbacks through a forest that feel almost endless and offer absolutely no views to take your mind off your misery. While you gain a lot of altitude in this section, on the map it looks like you are making no progress at all, which can feel somewhat discouraging. It was warm and really humid when we did the hike, which made the first part even worse.
Once you make it beyond the switchbacks, you finally get some views, which gradually open up until you have full 360 at the top. The final push again comes in the form of a few steep switchbacks but this time they are fairly short.
Mid-July, there was still a lot of snow at the top, so sturdy boots and hiking poles are a must.
During the whole hike, we only met 3 or 4 other people, so if you want some quiet time, this hike is definitely a good place. We saw some ground-squirrels and bear footprints but no other wildlife.
In sum, this is a great hike with stunning views at the top, definitely worth the effort.

This is one of my all time favorite hikes, its so beautiful!!!

Steep hike but not difficult. A lot of snow at the top and too slippery for just tennis/hiking boots. Had to turn around because we didn’t have the best shoes for compact snow and ice.

This must be one of my favorite, if not "the" favorite hike - it has really just about everything: an adventurous drive to the trail-head (more on that later), a forest to start your hike in, a lush mountain meadow, plenty of snow-fields (mid July) all the way to a rock-scrambling part to the lookout at the end. And the views, oh my, the views. Going up, they are beautiful already but once you make it to the ridge that will get you to the lookout, you're in for a real treat. I just wish we had known that it was possible to stay overnight in the lookout - sunset and sunrise must be absolutely stunning from there.
The hike itself is not easy and the last part would be tough for people with vertigo but otherwise we didn't think it was too difficult. It's easily manageable in an afternoon even if you take plenty of time to soak in the views at the top. We saw a bear and a pica rabbit too.
Oh, and I almost forgot, the drive. I saw cars parked at the trail-head that had pretty low clearance, so it must be possible to get there in just about anything but I was really happy that we took a rental 4WD SUV. The forest road is quite steep in places and littered with potholes large enough to break your axle in, so having a higher clearance vehicle comes in handy.
Overall, if there is just one hike you are going to do in this part of the park, make it this one!

Amazing views! Short, steep hike

Snowshoed this half way then back tracked.. next time doing the entire loop . Today was sunny and clear skies . Magical views that never stoped

Best hike of my life

1 month ago

This hike is so incredible! I've hiked it twice now and I'm always in awe! It's fairly difficult due to the steepness and the distance. But once you get to the top, it's all worth it. You forget all the pain and mosquito bites your endured on the way up. That view is so worth it!

Little muddy this time of year. Pretty lookout however it was cloudy today so it would be even better during the spring /summer! Quick hike & a good workout!

Gorgeous views!! Did this today 1/15 solo with my three dogs. Short hike, but it got steep quickly. No snow or ice, muddy on a few spots, but nothing too crazy.

Pretty much straight up hill, wouldn’t say it’s “easy” by any means but definitely doable. My 4 year old walked the whole thing. Pretty views! Trail was pretty muddy.

2 months ago

Incredible. Most beautiful hike I’ve ever been on in the US so far.

It is all uphill and definitely tiring with a little one. it is manageable with kids for sure. I'd definitely recommend bringing extra shoes for afterwards. mine got soaked. besides that the views are stunning.

2 months ago

The family really enjoyed this hike. In January this hike seems more moderate than easy. The walk up and down includes some steps that little legs will struggle with, meaning both the 5 year old and the Corgi. Several parts of the trail have water running down it. Not for a beginner hiker unless they are in relatively good shape.

2 months ago

Great views, a little wet and there was no snow or ice on the trail this morning

trail running
2 months ago

A bit boring, but great for quick run.

Didn’t make it to the trailhead! Road conditions not suitable!!! Too much snow, better luck next time

Go on a clear day. The view is amazing!

3 months ago

Quick short hike that's fun to do. Elevation does gain a bit. Very nice scenery when hiking up to the lookout. I loved the views of the mountains from the top. You can even bring a sleeping back to cuddle up in before sunrise and watch the mountains. Snowy parts everywhere. Great for families, friends, and pets.

Hidden lake lookout. Attempt number 3. Success.
It was king of challenge for me, I tried to get to the lookout two times before (May and November), two times in snow, two fails.
The initial plan for today was relax and enjoy snowshoe around Artis Point, but yesterday evening when I was checking reports I found on alltrails.com that somebody put 5 stars for Hidden Lake trail 5 days ago, it was enough for me to change my plans and try Hidden Lake again. Despite great weather I was not sure if I can make it, I still remember how much snow and avalanches was in May, but I decided give it a shot.

Came to trail around 10:30, actually I didn't get to trailhead even on AWD and parked mile or so before TH, 6 or 7 cars already were there. I reached TH in 40 mins and tired, it was difficult to go by snow, decided put on snowshoe after forest part. Forest part was easier, since less snow there, you can do in hiking boots, but gaiters recommended. Met two people going back, they done forest part of the trail and turned back.

Once I reached basin area I starded to follow by ski track, it was not easy, but doable in snowshoe which is a must at this part. I folowed ski track by right side from the stream, when actuall trail goes by left side. There are few avalances already came down, snow looks stable and solid, but anyway pay attention. Clibmed up to second avalanch, which came from the top and turned left to actual trail. Then did couple switchbacks and crossed this avalanch again toward to travers part of the trail. Despite hard and stable snow it was little bit scary to walk by avalnches, but I decided to go, maybe not too smart.

Travers part was very nice and much easier! View was gorgeous, clear views of peaks around, mt Baker, sun, snowshoe. Btw there are some steep slopes on this part as well, I even used iceaxe to go throug it, but as I said I followed by ski track, maybe it possible to find less steep route.

Once I reached end of the travers part I saw many snowshoe footprints at this point I realized that it should be some winter route. Definitely! I've seen many cars but met only two people, and ski track I followed by was few days long.

From this point there are few snowshoe trackы - first is regular trail, second goes to hidden lake peaks. I climbed up by second one, but at this point I did't know that it goes to the peaks, i realized it lated once I got closer. I didn't get to the peak, because it was already 2:30 pm and I had not so much time. I turned right towards to the lookuout, getting closer I've seen some people doing travers by peak to the lookout. In some report guys called this part "do it or die", kind of true :)

So, I reached lake viewpoint, then I took one of the snowshoe track up, travers part to the lookout is very steep, if you will go there you need to be very careful. I put of basket from my right pole and used it as iceaxe, before doing next step I put it deep in snow.

Finally I reached lookout, there were five people and two dogs, they came for overnight. They told me about winter route, it is shorter and much steeper. But! it much safer from avalanch standpoint since it goes through forest and there less snow now. So, if you go tomorrow or before next snowfall you can go by regular route, after snowfal basin area will be risky, but you can try winter route. But as I said it is very very steep espesially at the beginning (from road to lookout)

I took some food and photos and went down by regular route. Yeah, views were just awesome!

On my way back I met three people going up, they came by regular route as me. So, I tool winter route back, first half was easy, since I went down, moderate level of snow, good snowshoe track. Second part was more tough, slopes were much steeper, lots of fallen trees, I lost track little bit, because snow disappeared and I just followed direction to the road. Finally I reache the road, walked down to my car and went home.

Finally I can cross Hidden Lake Lookout trail in my list as completed.

I’d recommend going on a clear day! Snowshoed up yesterday but we were caught in snow, moderate wind and white sky views the whole time. The point was not accessible due to deep, fluffy snow and we didn’t want to cause an avalanche. This snowshoe would definitely have been more fun with scenery (beyond white hills disappearing into white skies, although that was surreal and gorgeous its own way). I recommend going with snowshoes that have a heel lift and teeth on the outside of the shoe, or you’ll be having to carve a new path like I was! Good lessons for my first snowshoe :)

3 months ago

Short, but steep on the way up. It was raining and had very limited visibility while I was there. But it was a pretty trail and when the fog cleared for a minute the mountain views were pretty.

3 months ago

Well intended hike, rain and fog closed us in, great exercise with out a view, will return at a later date

Great conditions today. Expect mud, and watch your step.

4 months ago

Great short hike!

Lots of snow up there. I got to the lake viewpoint but not to the lookout, since I was first on the trail and spent lots of time for trail finding and overall visibility was awful. Poles, gaiters is a must. Snowshoe, spikes might be helpful. Find my report on wta

I loved and hated this hike! It’s difficult, but the view is 100% worth it!

4 months ago

Astoundingly gorgeous. There was a little snow on the ground starting off in the morning, and by the time I got back in the afternoon the forest had changed completely. I went into a fall hike and came out of a winter hike. You’ll definitely want to bring trekking poles as there’s a small area that’s a fall hazard and you need to tread carefully. Visibility was maybe 600yards or so, and gave a creepy/beautiful winter vibe. The reds and greens of the forest mixed with the white snow are gorgeous.

As far as I could tell, I was the only person out there today (Only car in lot, the only other tracks I saw were rabbits).

Snow is about a foot on the actual ridge. I wouldn’t do this hike without waterproof hiking boots now. In a couple weeks, I imagine you’d want traction devices and gaiters too.

On my way back, there were multiple large downed branches I had to break through or driver over. Sagging plants from the snow brushed against my car where they weren’t before. If you have a 2wd drive car with a paint job you care about I’d wait till the snow clears in the spring.

4 months ago

Windy and cool, not cold, at the top on 10.29.17. Light snow on the ground, no spikes necessary yet. Phenomenal views of Baker, Shucksan, Table Mtn, Koma Kulshan, and more.

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