Blanca Lake Trail

HARD 214 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, walking, nature trips, and birding and is best used from June until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
6.5 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
3497 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

birding

hiking

nature trips

walking

forest

lake

views

waterfall

wild flowers

snow

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.

3 days ago

Very beautiful lake. my fitbit calculated 14 miles round trip that includes the 2 miles each way due to washout. very hard hike inclines the entire way til Virgin Lake then its a mile down hill to Blanca Lake. the lake is breathtaking and worth the hike. bring lots of water and power foods. towards the top its pretty rocky so be prepared for that. not a hike for small children.

hiking
4 days ago

4 days ago

Hiked this on Sept 17. Hike was hard but fun. We had 12 miles total, from the base of FS 63 down to the lake. It was raining lightly for most of the afternoon so the trail was slippery but there were no bugs. The lake was beautiful, worth the effort. The downside of this hike was the long walk along the FS road to get to the trail head and the lack of views.

hiking
5 days ago

Beautiful!

hiking
5 days ago

hiking
6 days ago

I've done this hike twice now, and it's still stunning both times!

Last I went, my group left around 6 am (from Lynnwood). I think we started hiking by 7:30 and got to the trailhead by 8:30 because of the washout that adds 2 miles to the hike (and 2 miles back).

Be mindful of the elevation! It starts steep, and doesn't level out until you're near Virgin Lake (which appears to be a big mud puddle). Bring lots of water, especially if you have dogs with you, and I'd say leave early because the elevation is pretty killer and you'll want those breaks. Also, I'd recommend to bring some bug spray because they tend to pester you for a while.

Once you pass Virgin Lake, it's a steep downhill for 20-30 min to get to Blanca. The water is super cold but super worth it! We got there around 11:30 and stayed until 1:15. On the way back, be mindful again of how steep it is, you might get some sore knees which some hiking poles might help with.

Got to the car around 4 with the last two miles being exhausting. Having been on the hike before there was the washout and the extra 4 miles, I can definitely confirm that it makes a huge difference!

hiking
9 days ago

hiking
16 days ago

I hiked Blanca with my Alaskan Klee Kai last summer. Unfortunately, we didn't make it to the lake because she tuckered out (we hiked 12 vs 14 miles) and started to overheat. We would have made it if the trailhead wasn't closed. Didn't help that it was a hot day. Hoping to give this another try before the end of summer.

hiking
16 days ago

it's hard but beautiful and worth it!

17 days ago

hiking
18 days ago

hiking
19 days ago

This hike gets five stars on here due to the pristine color and backdrop provided by Blanca Lake. Its really quite funny to see people post information about being surprised of the length of the hike due to the road closure. Its been this way for a while, long enough that reading reviews online will have that information. If your going to hike be aware of where you are going and what you are walking into.

This hike is hard, but not as hard as many of the reviews make it out to be. Yes, it takes time to make it up and over the ridge until you head down to the lake but as many of the reviews say its worth it. Bring water, yes its heavy at 8# per gallon but you will need almost a gallon per person for this hike to stay properly hydrated.

There are berries at the top of the hike just before you hit Virgin Lake. There are some by the lake but they arent as tasty. The stream is some what easy to cross at this time as well but some self confidence is required.

Please take your trash with you when you leave as well to keep this area looking great for the others behind you.

hiking
21 days ago

One of the prettiest lakes I've ever laid my eyes on. The hike is not easy but it's worth it!

hiking
22 days ago

AllTrails says it's 6.5 miles and WTA says it's 7.5. Neither are correct because the road to the trail head is closed. It adds 4 miles to the round trip since you have to first walk a 2 mile road to the trailhead. We measured this at 11.5 miles. Awesome lake and delicious blueberries at the top!

hiking
25 days ago

1 month ago

did this hike two years ago and remembered being traumatized by how difficult it was-- looking at the stats i now realize why! so much elevation gain in so little mileage- but the lake at the top is truly beautiful and breathtaking. you might complain all the way up but it all pays off!

1 month ago

Hard but worth it.

1 month ago

This was a brutal hike but I am not in the best of shape, AND my 10 and 11 year old daughters made it up with less whining than myself... So I would say it's definitely worth the brilliant beauty at the top! Great workout!