Reed Lakes Trail

MODERATE 63 reviews

Reed Lakes Trail is a 8.7 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Fishhook, Alaska that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from April until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
8.7 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
2247 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dog friendly

birding

camping

hiking

nature trips

rock climbing

trail running

walking

lake

views

waterfall

wild flowers

muddy

rocky

scramble

snow

Varied terrain, first two miles is well maintained, then move into a more rugged trail as you head deeper into the mountains. Several boulder fields.

hiking
7 months ago

Super great hike!!! Absolutely amazing scenery around the lakes. Trail was a bit muddy and slippery in spots, but nothing real awful.

7 months ago

This hike was full of diversity. The trail starts out as a well kept and maintained path then switches to a few switch backs as you go up and make your way to a boulder field. Boulder hoping was a bit tricky for me only because I was wearing my son other wise I imagine it would not have been bad at all as my husband hoped easily across. After making it across the first section a nice lady told us to continue to stay right on the way back. it was good advice! The lakes are beautiful!! The hike hike is relatively easy. The boulder jumping and length would be what makes it a moderate/hard hike.

7 months ago

Super fun trail for my dogs and I

7 months ago

This is a great place to do a first overnight hike if you've never done one. The views are beautiful. There is some boulder hoping you have to do but my 30 pound dog did pretty good, had to only pick her up a few times on the steep rocks. On the way out we found a route to avoid all the boulders and it was still beautiful but cut our time down significantly. It is rather heavily trafficked path.

hiking
7 months ago

I have one reactive dog and one super friendly dog. We have been looking for more challenging, less populated trails to explore and I. loved. this. trail. I agree with the person that described it as the Lord of the Rings lands- it's absolutely gorgeous. Everything you want in a trail. Until... the boulders. One person commented on a crossing with rocks.... well- I thought we had crossed it- water flowing with calmer creek and stepping stones across. My two 90# dogs did that with no problem. Then (what I'm guessing was) about 2.5-3 miles into the climb.... the boulders (which is what I call them) However, my dogs saw them as "HUGE, GORGEOUS boulders, but with deep holes between them that hungered for dog meat. No water ran underneath- just holes into a deep unknown space". Needless to say, I had to turn around and sadly (not reallly sadly because the entire experience was INCREDIBLE) head back because my huge puppies basically formed a silent boycott to crossing. I will lay eyes on you, Reed Lakes... just puppy-less. This place is a "must hike" imho for the "moderate" trail seekers.

hiking
7 months ago

Great day for a great hike. I took my two dogs but I don't think I'll do it again. they had a hard time with the boulders that are over the creek. It was beautiful and well worth it.

hiking
7 months ago

Absolutely spectacular hike, with something for everyone. Less experienced/conditioned hikers can go the first several miles which are mostly flat and be treated to some spectacular views of the mountains, as well as get up close with the beaver dams. Those looking for more of a challenge can continue with the rest of the trail, heading upward via switchbacks and boulder-hopping. You'll alternate between flat areas and ascents, which makes the entire hike feel really well balanced. The two lakes are gorgeous and surrounded on all side by glacier-carved mountains, giving the entire thing a very Lord of the Rings vibe.

Went on a Monday morning and only saw a few others on the trail all day. Not too buggy at this time of year. Highly recommended for almost anyone.

8 months ago

I gave it 4 stars, because there were no orcs, elves, dwarves, Rangers, Gandalf and Gollum weren't there, and Smaug. Other than that, I love this place!

hiking
9 months ago

Amazing views! We went when the fog was rolling through, but as soon as we made it to the top the fog cleared and there were blue skies!!

Wednesday, February 08, 2017

My favorite hike in the Anchorage area!

Monday, October 10, 2016

We did this hike on October 9th, 2016. It is actually a 9 mile round trip to the upper lake from the trailhead where you park your car. I think the reference to the 11.6 miles as described above may be if you hiked up Archangel Road from Hatcher Pass Road. It was definitely fall time and overcast skies. Thin ice on the ponds and the upper lakes had a few inches of ice on them. It was challenging in that the trail was very muddy and super slippery especially on the steep inclines, and coming down the steep, slippery trail was really exciting!!! The boulder field was actually kind of fun. You just have to look at where you are going to pick the best traveled path. We had a dog with us who is very long legged and agile, like a cat. He did just fine, although he was hesitant to jump from boulder to boulder in some areas. It was better if we were all ahead of him, and he would follow. I think I would love to do this hike again when the trail is dry and the foliage is colorful (summer or early fall). It took us 6.5 hours from trailhead to upper lake and back. We made a few short stops to rest and eat. I personally would not take little kids more than the first mile or so as I would think it would be really challenging for them and they would tire easily. And the boulder field isn't for little ones and it would be hard for an adult to traverse the field while holding or packing them. I would say the description of Moderate as shown here is adequate for a dry day. It is more challenging when the trail is muddy and slippery.

Friday, September 16, 2016

amazing gorgeous hike .. great day hike or over night as there is awesome camping at lower lake!

backpacking
Monday, September 05, 2016

Amazing hike! Spent a night out at the lake. Not very difficult with a day pack. When we were there a dog got across the rock section but didn't want to go back. Being a 70 pound dog it caused some problems for the owners. The rock scrambling is very fun and not too difficult. A must do hike in AK!!

hiking
Wednesday, August 10, 2016

All around, beautiful hike with lakes and waterfalls. It is definitely worth hiking to both the upper and lower lakes. The upper lake is a lot larger than the lower lake and you will come across the waterfall on the way. We hiked this trail a day after the rain, so bouldering was a little tricky as the boulders were wet and were at times slippery.

Thursday, August 04, 2016

One of the most beautiful hikes so far this year. Bridges, boulders, waterfalls and the bluest lakes you will ever see!!!!!

hiking
Friday, July 29, 2016

Love love love this hike! Planning to backpack it soon.
It's fairly flat until you reach the boulder field. There is a waterfall and lake to stop off at on your way. This is a great hike for anyone that is wanting beautiful scenery every mile of the way. Personally, I wouldn't recommend taking dogs. The boulders would be hard for them to cross over. If you have a smaller dog you could carry, that would be possible. Just use your best judgment on your dogs ability.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

I loved this hike! Absolutely Beautiful. I'll definitely do this one again. Unique terrain makes for an awesome adventure the entire way.

hiking
Wednesday, July 20, 2016

I love this hike, one of my favorites in Alaska. It looks like you stepped into a lord of the rings movie. Hatchers Pass is always beautiful and reed lakes is no exception. The terrain is unique, which makes it a pretty fun trail. It's definitely a long hike, but completely worth it.

camping
Monday, July 04, 2016

This trail was stunningly beautiful. Every mile offered exquisite views and interesting trails. The first part of the trail was very easy, good for kids and the elderly. There is a clear path that is easy to follow, difficult to trip or slip on, and is very relaxing. This part of the trail goes all the way to the beaver dams and offers beautiful views near the end, crossing wooden bridges over running water and finally seeing the beaver-made lake. At this point, things turn to a moderate difficulty. It's a snaking dirt path with intermittent rocks. I don't advise making this part of the journey on a wet day as the mud is very slick. Be sure to look out for each other and don't be afraid to ask for a hand up, you may need it. Once you reach the part of the trails where the boulders over the water are, it becomes very difficult. Definitely not for beginners, but worth the view if you can make it. I advise keeping an eye out for the weather. Wear waterproof or water resistant clothing, especially shoes. Bring a couple pairs of socks. Carry as little weight as you can and try to strap it evenly across your back. If you plan on camping, bring a small, lightweight tent. Wear layers that you can remove and put back on easily. These are just some tips my group would have done better for knowing. This was our first major hike and we were unprepared. Be sure to do your research.

hiking
Saturday, July 02, 2016

Every mile offers something different. Valley home along little lakes and beaver dams, to a boulder field, to beautiful, narrow creek valley, and then up to the lakes. There are a few challenging areas, but over all it's a moderate hike.

camping
Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Beautiful hike and a great family hike, super pretty in the summer. The trail is easy to follow. There is a portion of boulders that can be challenging for dogs and smaller children but manageable. Bring a jacket even if it is warm, it was cooler at the top of the mountain.

trail running
Wednesday, June 22, 2016

$5 self-pay park pass. Beautiful scenery, and plenty of others out there as well.

hiking
Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Going up the hills and climbing boulders was rough but well worth it to see the beautiful colored lake.

Monday, August 17, 2015

This hike was pretty. Unfortunately heavy fog covered the majority of the mountain tops. I would recommend it.

camping
Friday, August 07, 2015

Spectacular Trail. Good for day hike or backpacking.
TRAIL HEAD: Take Palmer Fishook road into Hatcher Pass. Shortly after you pass the hard switchback at the Motherload Lodge (recently burned down) look for Archangel Road on your right. Drive 2 miles down Archangel to the trailhead on your right.
TRAIL: The first mile or so is mostly flat along a river with beaver ponds until you come to an old mine site. There are several collapsed building here to explore. Here you can take a side trail to the left up a fairly steep hill to the Snowbird mine. This is a collection of collapsed buildings and rusted out mining equipment. The main trail continues up some switchbacks and across a boulder field to the lower lake. Reed creek runs along the trail with wide pools suitable for swimming when the weather is warm. There are several nice camping spots along the lower lake. The trail continues up a steep section along the creek, past a nice waterfall, and eventually comes to the upper lake. There are also several nice camping spots near the upper lake. The trail continues around the upper lake and up and over the high ridges at the end of the valley, but we did not go past the upper lake.
NOTICE: Archangel Road is currently closed (8/6/2015) due to construction. The road work appears to be done, but the bridge near the Reed Lakes trailhead is being replaced. You can park at the turn off to Archangel. This will add about 2 miles each way to your hike along Archangel road to the actual trailhead. The foreman at the bridge estimated the road would be open by the end of August 2015.

hiking
Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Great hiking trail, probably one of my favorites in AK. It's pretty easy to start off & then a gradual uphill hike. Very beautiful!

camping
Tuesday, June 02, 2015

Ever want to feel like Aragorn, Legolas, and Gimli galavanting through the hills as you run down the Uruks on their way to Isengard? Well you're in luck because this is the trail for you! gorgeous scenery and plenty of hills and ridges perfect for galavanting and exploring. Just keep breathing! That's the key!

Thursday, May 28, 2015

This is easily my favorite moderate hike. It just offers so much! The scenery is amazing and the trail just so varied! This trail offers a little but of everything. Two beautiful mountain lakes, a crystal clear stream, wildlife, boulder hoping, awesome spots to pitch a tent, a gorgeous waterfall, beautiful mountain scenery, numerous spots for rock climbing. You name it, it probably has it. The trail itself is well defined throughout its entire length. The first mile is wide and flat. From there it rises sharply over a short distance until you get to the boulder field. From there it's a steady upward hike to the lower lake, but nothing too steep, maybe a little muddy in spots. Great spots here to camp next to the creek if you're so inclined. At the back end of the lower lake you have a steep hike making the wall to the velley above, next to a gorgous waterfall. For those not bothered by heights and a little bit of exposure, you can walk to the lip of the falls! From this point to the upper lake, about another mile further, is relatively flat and wide open. I make sure to take my children out here at least once a year, I love this trail! Best times are July and August. Expect snow from the top of the boulder field through June. Still completely doable without any special gear, but the trail itself will likely be covered, and you'll have to make your own trail avoiding pitfalls and open water. Be aware that mountain storms downpours are common and virtually unannounced. Make sure you have gear to stay dry, or you can expect to become hypothermic very quickly.

hiking
Monday, July 28, 2014

Only completed the first part of the trail before the boulders, great trail for dogs.

hiking
Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Spent more then half a day up on the main trail as well as off to the south of it rock scrambling, hoping to find a way back over the the main trail over the rare back. With all of the lush (and prickly) vegetation, we decided to backtrack and use the main trail up to the first lake, where we ended our day. A bright day helped make the trek full of scenic pictures as well.

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