hiking

views

walking

forest

wild flowers

nature trips

birding

dog friendly

wildlife

lake

dogs on leash

river

camping

kid friendly

trail running

backpacking

snowshoeing

waterfall

rock climbing

The Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest is one of the most visited forests in the country. Located on the west side of the Cascades between the Canadian border and Mt. Rainier National Park, you will find glacier-covered peaks, spectacular mountain meadows and old-growth forests rich in history and outdoor opportunities.

It was a perfect day to go. The road had a few ice patches. As for the trail, it was doable without spikes but they were really helpful scrambling to the top. I do recommend at least having a trekking pole.

November 18, 2018:
Trail: 80-90% covered in well packed snow; microspikes highly recommended, other hikers were turning around, a couple were going for it without anything but it just makes life so much easier. Only passed a handful on the trail and we had the summit to ourselves around noon.
Road: The few hundred feet just before the trailhead is covered in a thin layer of snow/ice but we made it easily in a Jeep Cherokee. It will make for a sketchy drive when it refreezes each night, due to not all of it being rutted down to gravel.

***Please, stay off the switch back shortcuts because they are causing trail erosion!

Great hike, 25 degrees with clear blue sky, saw one other person the entire walk.
So this trail really has nothing to do with Coal Lake except you are Coal Lake Rd and drive past Coal Lake. Coal Lake is like 200 ft from the parking area. Drive past this trail to the end of the road, this is the trailhead for Independence Lake and North Lake. The mile walk up to Independence is a real nice warmup. When you get to the far end of this pretty little lake just follow trail, up. When you get to the top you will sort of follow the hill around to the right then start down towards North Lake. This part of the trail is the one shovel wide type and is steep and slick.

Short 2mi. round trip hike. The bridges are a little slick during the Winter months. Beautiful hike and the cave is breathtaking! A child friendly hike.

Perfect hike for an ass kicking!

Nice trail in the woods. At campgrounds has great views to Mount Baker.

Our gps said there was a road closure but that was false. Got there with no issues. At some point the cave has collapsed a large portion. see pics. There is also a huge crack on the left side of cave. Also a crack in the upper center piece of the cave. Hiking baby did not go inside the cave. I went in and walked towards the back and there is an amazing waterfall in the back of the cave. After leaving the cave went further down the trail and if you stand next to the small opening you can feel a draft like a fan. Pretty neat. Further down there is another waterfall.

Absolutely stunning view. Went in the middle of November. It was chilly and icy. But soo worth it! My favorite so far

Hiked from Heather Meadows - lots of snow but still totally worthwhile and doable (note that there were lots of tracks from groups prior, so we never had difficulty trying to find the trail). Would recommend getting up there if the weather is nice, otherwise look forward to the flowers in 2019.

Super nice day, clear blue sky and 30 degrees. 4 inches of fresh snow, lakes are frozen over. Great little hike, if you go slow and easy takes about 5 hours including a little site seeing along the way. The tree people talk will only be a problem if you are driving something really tall like a truck with a camper on it.

hiking
10 days ago

More of a moderate trail- not very well maintained near the end. Still beautiful.

In this time the season we couldn’t get to far due to the ice over creeks. Come very very prepared for ice. Overall a great hike, just wish we could do it all. Come early and don’t start too late.

Easy trail. The ice caves are very cool. If you go inside of them there is a waterfall at the end. Because the caves are melting the ice drips from the roof, so prepare to get wet. Bring a flashlight.

on Monte Cristo Trail

16 days ago

Great stroll even in the pouring rain. We turned into the trail at the first large caution sign that crossed a wooden bridge into the woods. We should have stayed straight right toward the rivers edge instead of going up. The next woops was we missed the pile of rocks to indicate where to turn to actually go to Monte Cristo from that side of the trail. We went about a mile past the turn before we realized and had to backtrack. We were gaining elevation and the route to Montecristo is lowland around 700 feet. So if you take that route look for a pile of rocks about mile and a half in on your left hand side and take a left at that pile of rocks. You will eventually get down to the river again to find that long log that most people talk about that you need to cross over and from there you just keep Truckin ahead on the gravel road about 2 more miles and you'll find Monte Cristo.

hiking
16 days ago

The road to the trailhead has been repaired, just stay on 2081 until the end and you are there, like 5.6 miles off the pavement. Fun little hike, starts out uphill so you are warmed up for the steep part. Two rounds of cardio, up the hill, then back up from the lake.

Completed this today! The road was the most difficult part for me today. I drove my Hyundai Tucson all the way up. Bottomed our three times. This road is doable I’m AWD and 4x4 vehicles with clearance. The trail was awesome! Light snow at the start and as I gained elevation the snow for deeper of course. I used my spikes on the way down only. Snowshoes would have helped in a few areas but not necessary to complete the trail. Lookout is locked up for the winter but the hike was very well worth the extra effort. DO NOT do this trail in the fall/winter unless you are comfortable with self arrest, know avalanche basics as well as winter survival. There were persons this trail that got a little sketchy. Oh and you can’t be afraid of heights with the added snow the trail is steep and even made me a little edgy at times. Awesome hike!

Tried this on 10/29/18, my SUV couldn’t get up the steep road. The people coming down said snow was pretty deep and you needed snow shoes. I turned around.

An easy trail since it’s low elevation gain and goes along a road most of the way. There is a log crossing, so I wouldn’t advise small children or anyone with balance issues or fears. However, there are other options if you decide to turn around at the log. The ghost town is very cool with pretty forest and river views along the way!The trail is worth it as long as you know what you’re getting into! I give it a three because it’s not really a hike, but more of a forest road walk.

A clear October day and all the fall colors makes this trail one of the most gorgeous hiking experiences. If I were going to try to get a beginner hooked on hiking I'd start them here! The scenery payoff is huge for such a moderate hike. We started from the upper lot, but I'd recommend starting at the lower lot. It has a lake and picnic tables. A perfect spot to finish up!

Super easy hike to the really cool caves!

The beginning of the hike to Monte Cristo is easy. From here, you follow the trailhead towards silver and twin lakes. The hike to Silver lake is relatively difficult. If you choose to continue to twin lakes, plan ahead. This part of the hike is extremely difficult and steep. The trail can be difficult to follow at times. However, twin lakes is ABSOLUTELY beautiful and 100% worth the extra effort.

Deer creek road is closed about two miles in. You can drive to where it is closed, park, then walk from there. Or you can just park at the bottom and walk the whole way. It is about 9 miles round trip if you park at the bottom and hike to Kelcema lake. It's an easy - moderate hike. Decently groomed gravel road with a few wash outs. It is a slight incline on the way up, but pretty mild. Also, there was a decent amount of water on the road, so bring waterproof shoes or practice jumping across rocks.

Deer creek road is closed about two miles in. You can drive to where it is closed, park, then walk from there. Or you can just park at the bottom and walk the whole way. It's an easy - moderate hike. Decently groomed gravel road with a few wash outs. It is a slight incline on the way up, but pretty mild. Also, there was a decent amount of water on the road, so bring waterproof shoes or practice jumping across rocks. I hiked to Kelcema lake, about 9 miles RT.

Some of the trail is redirected do to wash outs and to cross the river you go over a fallen tree. all around a very beautiful hike.

Great walk with historical destination and beautiful fall colors. As noted on prior post, there was a crew of volunteers at the historic town, working to preserve this great gateway to our past... THANKS.

Only negative would be that the river crossing point was poorly marked.

Beware! There are two parking lots. The upper one, at Artist’s Point, was where we started. 4 hours later, when we got around to the lower one it was pretty demoralizing to find that we still had a ton of steep uphill to climb. Next time we will start in the lower lot and go counterclockwise so we get the uphill part done first.

My 12-year-old rates it as “moderate”. Her idea of “hard” is Mt. Si.

Views were incomparable. Dogs were off leash but friendly. People were also off leash but friendly.

Great hike with 14 boy scouts for a fun overnighter. This was a great way for the younger scouts to work on their outdoor skills. The camping area was very nice and provided plenty of room. Although not stated here (unless I missed it) the US forest service still recommends packing in water. Although there was a cleanup in 2016, the Ranger station in Verlot stated that there is the possibility of arsenic in the water still so it is good to pack in your water.

We left the trailhead in the dark and still weren’t the first to arrive at the lookout. The guy there said we could share so it worked out great. Clear weather, didn’t even freeze at night. Watched sunset and sunrise and hiked to tarns and bell pass. Tons of day hikers came and went. The trail is boulders in a couple areas below, easy to cross the almost dry river. The twin Sisters range is amazing from up there. Trail got a bit steep when we were just about to the lookout. I’m 68, you can do it too. Mt Baker is my favorite anyway.

How do you get to the trailhead, when me and my buddy tried to get there the road was gated

This trail was simply amazing from beginning til the end. Felt on another planet. Breathtaking view. Not as hard as it seems

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