Blanca Lake Trail

HARD 163 reviews

Blanca Lake Trail is a 6.5 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Index, Washington that features a lake and is only recommended for very experienced adventurers. The trail is primarily used for hiking and walking and is best used from June until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

6.5 miles
3497 feet
Out & Back

dogs on leash







wild flowers


Drive US Highway 2 to just west of milepost 50 (located between the town of Skykomish and the Skykomish Ranger Station). Turn north onto Beckler Road #65, toward Beckler River Campground. From US Highway 2 on FS Road #65, drive 15 miles and turn right on FS Road #63. Continue for 1.8 miles and turn left at the junction for the entrance to Blanca Lake trailhead. Mile 12.5 from Highway 2 (Jack Pass) - *this is where everyone gets lost* You'll enter a circular intersection/clearing. You want to take the second left in order to continue on 65. (not the sharp left turn) There is a sign for 65 right at the start of this road (once you have already taken this turn correctly). Going straight gets you to a dead end quickly.

6 hours ago

11 hours ago

Great hike! Snow level was a little above 3500 feet. Lake was frozen over 5-29-17. We camped above the lake and enjoyed the views and nice weather but many day hikers were disapointed that the lake was frozen over.

2 days ago

I would not recommend doing this hike until August/September. I attempted it on Saturday and there is WAY too much snow that hits with about a mile to a mile and a half left in the hike. The slopes are steep, and if you're not very careful you could easily slip and slide down. There are also a lot of areas where snow is melting and making it very easy to fall through and hurt yourself. It is a dangerous hike right now! The lake is totally frozen over too, so you can't see the turquoise water that is present later in the year. If you feel like you must do this hike right now, bring poles, extra water, and shoe spikes. You WILL need them. Be safe hikers!

7 days ago

10 days ago

After the switch backs, the trail was not visible and most of it was covered in snow. had to turn around, but will definitely come back in August :). also due to the washout you have to walk 2 miles just to get to the trailhead!

11 days ago

15 days ago

The lake is incredibly magical, well worth the tough trek.

27 days ago

Mostly inaccessible as of 5/30/17 due to snow line causing lack of visible trail (and difficult snow hiking) closer towards Virgin Lake. Blanca is still totally boxed in by snow. Eager to try this again in a few weeks!

28 days ago

Tough route, don't underestimate the difficulty but overwhelmingly beautiful lake once you reach the destination.

1 month ago

1 month ago

Hey guys is the trail accessible ?

1 month ago

Must do hike!!

1 month ago

1 month ago

The lake is absolutely breathtaking, but the trail is mostly switchbacks. As I was going back down, other hikers going up the trail kept asking "are we there yet?" I didn't have the heart to tell them that they weren't even halfway! That being said, the end result is sooooo worth it.

2 months ago

3 months ago

7 months ago

The only reason I am rating a 4 and not a 5 is because it's hard! I got to the location around 9 or 10, don't quite remember since I did the hike back in early September. First off, know that there isn't any set parking, you just have to park on the side of the road and there is a $5 parking fee that you put in the deposit box by the info board. I was surprised there was only 2 other people when we started, we arrived at the same time and there was no other vehicles. Anyway, as most people have said, the road leading up to the actual start of the trailhead is washed out so this adds an additional 2 miles to and from. This part is very easy. Once you hit the actual trailhead, it's not bad. I have a lot of endurance so I didn't actually start to get fatigued until about 1 mile before Virgin lake, this is the muddy swampy looking lake before you reach Blanca. YOU ARE NOT GOING THE WRONG WAY IF YOU SEE THIS. After this lake, I want to say it's about another mile, maybe a little more to reach Blanca and this is where it really starts to get difficult. There's lots of boulders going down to the lake and it can be kind of slippery because of the mud so be careful. Once you're here you feel so close, but it does feel rather lengthy, this was the worst part for me and I knew it would be a pain coming back up through here (it was). Once you see that turquoise blue water, it's truly amazing though. It seemed unrealistic. Try to get views from different angles of the lake; from a certain distance it looks absolutely beautiful. Close up too though :-)
I would definitely like to do this hike again, but if I did I would probably camp out, you are so exhausted by the time you actually get up there and the view is so stunning that having the time to be there and relax would've made it better.

7 months ago

Extra two miles to the trailhead due to the road being washed out. Challenging hike. Clocked the mileage at 12 round trip. The elevation gain was 2900ft and then 700ft descent to the lake. It was muddy and soggy in some spots, but the trail was actually in pretty good condition. Saw only 5 other ppl on the trail. Took us exactly 3 hours to get to the lake, about 2.5 to get down.