Gothic Basin Trail

HARD 387 reviews

Gothic Basin Trail is a 12.5 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Granite Falls, Washington that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, camping, and backpacking and is best used from June until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 12.5 miles Elevation Gain: 3,284 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

backpacking

camping

hiking

forest

lake

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

snow

Please note: road to trailhead may close seasonally, adding numerous miles to the trip. Passing the metal gate just south of the parking lot is where the adventure start. For about 1-1.5 miles is an old gravel road that parallels to the Sauk River. You will first pass the Monte Cristo trail head first. Keep walking until the trail comes to a fork. You will proceed to the right going into the forest until you see the trail head for "Weden Creek/Gothic Basin #724". There is also an old outhouse. Proceed past the sign for a little bit and then you will then see a large sign for the "Weeden Creek Trail". This is your destination. The trail starts off with a gentle grade incline through the sheltering forest for about a mile. A couple of small stream crossings will be passed. About 1.5 miles into the trail, a series of switchbacks (about 20) will begin. The switchbacks are moderate at first then the incline starts to ascend pretty dramatically. Leading out of the forest, you will arrive at the first major waterfall. Continue onward and upward crossing to the left of the waterfall. The trail then beings to get very rough and rocky continuing this way throughout the rest of the hike. Some of the pathway is very narrow, hugging the edge of the mountain with thick overgrowth. The final ascend into the basin is very steep amongst rocks and flat boulders. You will then arrive at Gothic Basin when you see a small lake surrounded by numerous peaks at 4.5 miles into the hike. The hike to Foggy Lake was about 20 minutes past Gothic Basin. It is probably about half a mile away with another 500 ft of additional elevation gain. There is not a clear trail to the lake. You will not see any views at the base of Gothic Basin. The higher you go, the better the views get. After reaching the top of the first ridge the view was magnificent seeing the small lake on the bottom and the different surrounding mountains/peaks. The view was worth the difficult journey. Foggy Lake is very nice. You will not see much green as it is surrounded by rock formations. This hike is mentally draining because you are constantly trekking over rocks, boulders and walking/climbing steeply over ridges without knowing if you are close to the end. However, all breathtaking views come with a challenge! *Northwest Forest Pass required*

hiking
snow
21 days ago

Hiked 2/3rds way in until snow was too deep, to go further. Had the place to ourselves as the road was closed 7mi. to trail head . Beautiful day for it, the snow did not become an issue until past the waterfall.

hiking
icy
snow
1 month ago

Hiked today (11/30) on a blue bird day and had the place to ourselves! Very quiet, only passed three groups total. Holy moly this hike is amazing! About 2.5miles in is when the real views start, frozen waterfalls, snow capped mountains..truly a winter wonderland at the moment. Foggy lake is starting to freeze over but still looked unreal. An update on trail conditions -the road to the trailhead is icy for the last mile or so. We had an AWD and did fine but drive carefully. I’d check the roads before you leave as I suspect they will be closing the road soon -the trail is covered in a mixture of snow and ice, strongly recommend traction/spikes and poles -up around the basin is deep snow but manageable if you don’t mind postholing -there is a defined boot path the whole way up -we didn’t get our car windows smashed (yay?!) -it was super cold, 24 at the trailhead, dress accordingly Otherwise highly recommend! Would love to come back and camp in summer

it's around 3 miles until the views start, but then they're pretty good It was pretty icy near the top.

hiking
icy
muddy
rocky
scramble
snow
2 months ago

My friend and I completed Gothic Basin on 10/27/19. We hit snow at 4000 elevation along with very icy conditions. I would say microspikes and trekking poles are nearly a must have for this hike. It is very steep with only a few switch backs and there are definite times when being familiar with scrambling really helps. We didn't make it to Foggy Lake only Gothic Basin as we wanted plenty of time to get down in the daylight. As such almost all the views were on the way up after we got about 2 to 2.5 miles into the trip. It was a fun challenge and well worth it. We plan to do it again when the days are longer and make it to Foggy Lake.

hiking
muddy
snow
2 months ago

absolutely perfect day out on the trail. knee deep snow towards the last half but was manageable.

hiking
snow
2 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

Attempted this trail on 10/20/19. Beautiful trail, as everyone else mentioned... LOTS of steep uphills and switchbacks. The trail itself was pretty challenging in itself as it was wet/slippery. Once I made it out of the forested area into the open terrain... it was dumping snow (which was absolutely gorgeous with the scenery... the epitome of a Winter Wonderland). Truly didn't anticipate as much snow being up there as there was. Tried to push on to reach the basin despite passing a couple who turned around because they didn't come prepared. Made it about .25 miles from the basin. At that point, the snow was close to waist deep and the trail became impossible to navigate. With the surrounding steepness, it was definitely skirting avalanche territory so I decided to call it. A little bummed that I got so close... but you can't mess with mother nature. It's a tough hike without the snow... and pretty brutal with it! Will attempt reaching the peak again in warmer months! Definitely recommend trekking poles and micro spikes for this one :)

hiking
muddy
rocky
snow
3 months ago

Did a solo overnight at Foggy Lake on the 5th to the 6th (no other overnighters were there). Trail is in good condition, even remarkably non-slippery on the many rocks you have to hike on while it rained the majority of the trip up. Snow started just before getting to the basin and had 2-5 inches @ Foggy Lake. It was hard to find camping spots that did not have 2-4 inches of slush/water in them around Foggy Lake. Almost ready to give up I found one up a little higher up on the left side of Foggy as you approach, that had hard snow. Rain / semi-snow finally stopped around 5:30 pm and made way for a beautiful sunset. Overnight got to mid-20's and the tent had frost on it in the morning. Clear skies in the morning made for good sunrise photos (none of the 'good' photos posted here, as I need to process them yet) and a nice trip down, where in the early hours the semi-frozen dirt was the most slippery. One of the most picturesque climbs that I've done. Loved it!

backpacking
rocky
scramble
snow
3 months ago

map is updated from parking lot but distance is not (10,7 miles) - keep an eye out for Cairns when trying to find foggy lake

hiking
muddy
rocky
snow
3 months ago

I saw this trail on the app. looked it over sounded like a great challenge right. well although it Was absolutely amazing I think Past reviews are not as accurate as they should be to anyone venturing out there. it is NOT 9.1 miles. we went to the lake and roundtrip.was 14.3! I am an avid trail runner. this was a ton of climb, exceptionally rocky combined with water run off makes it a slick course for an average leisure hiker. just know it is over 5 miles uphill and of course over 5 down which is more slick and difficult then uphill. I do not recommend for leisure hikers and definitely dont bring kids. I agree with the accuracy of the label "hard" . Amazing views of waterfalls, the mountains, beautiful blue sky and snow capped trees. makes for amazing shots. I'd have to say the lake at the "ending" point was disappointing more like a pond not to mention it gets confusing back there if navigation is not your strong suit.

3 months ago

This trail is a little brutal! Like others have said the whole hike is closer to 11 miles round trip, as you already have to hike about a mile to get to the actual trailhead. I heard about the many incidents of car break ins and even saw a cop car roaming after getting back to the parking lot. However, I didn’t have an issue, and we returned to our car quite late, around 6 or 7. The trail starts out very flat, but once you hit around a mile/mile and a half in, there are brutally steep and long switchbacks. Once the trail opens up, after around 2 miles in, the trail becomes much more scenic! We did this on a partly cloudy day (9/8/19) and started at 1pm. The rain had subsided for a bit, and we were rewarded by a rainbow over the trees! There are two or more mini streams/waterfalls that we have to traverse. Although beautiful, be careful with footing on wet rocks and the narrow trail. There was plenty of rocky scramble before reaching the top - I loved the sight of the rich orange rocks! Again, you need to be careful with footing! Poles could be helpful if you have them. I’d recommend going earlier than you expect if you want to spend some time up there - the trail opens up and flattens to two lakes and there is plenty to explore! I think I’d definitely enjoy this hike more on a sunnier day because our spirits were a little weathered by the perpetual rain! Perfect place for camping! Do this on a dry day and plan ahead so you can fully enjoy the top!

hiking
muddy
rocky
4 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

We got to the trailhead at 8:30am Sunday morning. There were 10-14 cars that had ALL been broken into. All had smashed windows and were ransacked. When we returned later the Sheriff was in the parking lot. It had rained really hard that previous night and before got to the parking lot. But none of the cars had rain/water inside them. So someone did this early between 7-8am on Sunday morning. There’s a sign that says”High Crime Area” in parking lot. But mean people suck. I’d really be careful parking here. Especially overnight parking. Or use a higher/busier less remote hiking area with safer parking.

hiking
rocky
4 months ago

Total hike is more around 12 miles not 9. At the first small lake it’s easy to lose the trail, and then you make your own to scramble to the big lake. Definitely a workout. Bring lots of water. It was fun to take a dip and enjoy the beautiful surrounding.

hiking
bugs
muddy
rocky
4 months ago

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