Gem Lake Trail

HARD 41 reviews
#4 of 24 trails in

Gem Lake Trail is a 9.6 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Snoqualmie Pass, Washington that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
9.6 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
2657 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

backpacking

camping

hiking

nature trips

walking

forest

lake

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

2 months ago

Great, rocky hike! I went on Tuesday and arrived at 11:30. My dog and I made our way up to snow lake alright (dog + scrambles = struggle) but had a tough time on the descent towards the lake: beware of ice. Thank you to whomever did that!

We got to gem lake by around 2:30. Wasn't super impressed and if you're tired at snow lake, I would recommend just turning back. If you want a nice challenge definitely do the extra mile! I honestly would not have found just the hike to snow lake challenging, but the hike to gem lake was beautiful, confusing at times, and pretty challenging at the tail end! We got back to the car by 4:30 for a total of 5 hours. I took breaks infrequently and did not take long at either lake, but I was slowed down by my dog on the way back due to all the rocks.

hiking
2 months ago

This hike was nice with the exception of the crowds. I tend to avoid hiking along I 90 due to these crowds but its been a long time since I have done this hike. I dont think I ever went all the way to Gem Lake though. I dont think the hike is hard as they say as it feed constant with the elevation gain. There were way too many people for a late October weekend even if it was sunny. I would really hate to be here in the summer. With all the people it was very time consuming returning to the car. The trail was good with only a few patches of ice today. Great hike for families, newbies and apparently those in sneakers. I wouldnt return due to the crowds as there are so many other places to go. Its worth the trip if you can avoid the crowds. Dont be a weenie and only go to Snow Lake, continue on to Gem Lake as its the best of the two.

3 months ago

Originally we went to snowlake but decided why not let try gem... I enjoyed the other side of snowlake and the light dusting of now was a nice surprise!!! 10/8/17

hiking
3 months ago

Well worth extending from Snow Lake for. Gorgeous.

backpacking
3 months ago

Hiked into Gem Lake for an overnight backpacking trip, it was cold, misty, with cloud bands moving in and out constantly Monday, Tuesday morning we awoke to bright sunshine just pushing up over the ridge and heavy dew. We fished unsuccessfully for awhile before making the push out to the parking lot. Tough hike - but well worth the effort as the reward is stunning scenery.

3 months ago

Great moderate day hike. Definitely worth going past snow lake and making it to Gem Lake.

hiking
3 months ago

Beutful hike , it is very hard to Gem lake but well worth it

hiking
4 months ago

Less crowded than Snow Lake.

hiking
4 months ago

My friend and I hiked this on Sunday. Advanced trail for me. (First hike). But was so great and worth it when I completed it! Of course we had to jump in the lake. It was extremely cold!! We thought it was poorly mapped. Weren't many signs to tell you which way to go.

backpacking
4 months ago

Gem and snow lakes were beautiful, and barely any bugs! We were prepared for swarms but did not see even one mosquito

5 months ago

Beautiful trail! Not sure how we accidentally went on the Source Lake detour and that was alittle scary and added mileage. Bugs were fierce. Bring lots of water as it's hot AF!

hiking
5 months ago

Gorgeous lakes and the trail is in excellent condition. Not even a hint of snow but a lot of bugs, so please carry a bug spray. Happy hiking!

hiking
6 months ago

This was a gorgeous hike. Gem Lake is still almost completely frozen. Still lots of snow as you make your way from Snow Lake to Gem Lake, but not impossible without spikes and poles. Still, I would recommend bringing them if you have them.

6 months ago

Lots of snow. Beautiful scenery the entire hike!! Next time I'd wear hiking boots instead of hiking shoes. I had to wring out my socks and insoles 3 times. Loved both lakes!

hiking
6 months ago

Amazing hike, one of the best lakes I've hiked yet. Still quite a bit of snow covering trails, but so worth the hassle. Spectacular views of snow lake along the trail and over ranges to the north. Highly recommend going early to beat crowds, clouds cleared around 1pm and we were the only ones on the trail that far. Lots of people at the top of the lake on the way back. So worth the extra miles to gem lake.

8 months ago

The hike between Snow Lake and Gem Lake is incredible! We hiked in late August and the blueberries were an awesome bonus - fields of them!

hiking
Saturday, November 26, 2016

We went to gem lake to avoid the crowd in snow lake. The lake is a beautiful. The water is clear. It's picturesque everywhere I took a lot of pictures of fall colors on the hike. I will come back camping someday.

hiking
3 months ago

9.2 miles total. New to Washington and Washington hiking, but I have done close to a dozen hikes in this state and this hike was for sure my favorite. I think the fall colors made it. Also, I would say the hike to gem is overall moderate, not hard. I went off the trail a few times by accident on my way up to gem, but when I referred to AllTrails I was able to find my way back to the trail. I was able to stay on the trail during the descent.

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
2 months ago

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