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Indian Heaven Trail to Lake Wapiki

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Indian Heaven Wilderness

Indian Heaven Trail to Lake Wapiki is a 8.3 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Trout Lake, Washington that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking and camping and is best used from June until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 8.3 miles Elevation Gain: 2,440 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

camping

hiking

forest

lake

views

wildlife

One of the best hikes in the Indian Heaven Wilderness: dramatic views of Mount Adams and distant views of Mount Rainier, Goat Rocks and Mount St. Helens. After ascending through thick forest the first 1-1/2 miles, a plateau full of huckleberry fields and hundreds of small lakes that beg exploring. Indian Heaven Wilderness is famous for its 150 + lakes and huckleberry-filled alpine meadows. The Native Americans used to gather each year to hunt, fish, collect berries and race their horses until the 1920s. On the northern and western side of the wilderness, huckleberry picking is still reserved for tribal members only. On clear days, there are great views of Mount Adams, Mount Rainier, Goat Rocks and Mount St. Helens. Starting at the Cultus Creek campground, the hike begins a steep ascent through a Douglas Fir forest and skirts along the side of Bird Mountain. The first viewpoint has a very big payoff: unobstructed views of nearby Mount Adams, with Goat Rocks and Mount Rainier in the not so far distance. After Cultus Lake, take the Lemei Trail at the junction to Lemei (pronounced lem-ee-eye) Rock and a view of Lake Wapiki. The trail passes through meadow after meadow of huckleberries and heather, which in the fall are full of bright yellow and red colors, and plenty of berries for sampling. Lemei Rock is an ancient volcano crag and Lake Wapiki is held in its old red cinder crater.

backpacking
snow
18 days ago

There is currently no day use fee for the trail, all the pay boxes are covered and no fee signs are displayed. Me and my love attempted to backpack to Lake Wapiki today, 6/16/20, but the trail was just too snowy. The road was completely melted out and in decent condition. About a mile into the hike the trail got covered in snow, ranging anywhere from 2 - 7 ft. deep. We kept hoping we would find a spot melted out enough to make a fire and pitch a tent, but after walking about a mile into the snow, we got to the first lake along the trail and realized that wasn't going to happen. We gave it a solid try but if you're not prepared for snow camping/hiking, give it atleast another month before you attempt this trail. I'm not sure if it is usually still this snowy mid-June, we have had a cool/wet spring this year so it could be due to that. But for future hikers reading this review, I would recommend waiting until July to try it, or to atleast have a lower elevation trail picked out as a back up plan if you want to try in June.

hiking
snow
8 months ago

Hiked on 11/2/19. Some patches of snow / ice from the start, then about 2 miles in when you start to reach the lakes it’s fully snow and ice covering the trail. Doable at this point with just hiking boots, poles and spikes couldn’t hurt but two of us plus pup made it fine without. Barely saw anyone else up there on a beautiful Saturday. Lakes were frozen over, gorgeous views.

hiking
muddy
over grown
snow
8 months ago

Hiked Lemei TH to Wapiki Lake to Lemei trail and the viewpoint above the lake Wednesday 10/9/19. If you are using Google maps to get to the Lemei trailhead the directions are wrong, go a little further up the road till you see the Lemei TH sign. Parking is maybe enough for 4 vehicles right after Lemei TH sign. There is no bathroom here or trash. You must fill out a self issue wilderness permit to hike here. Make sure you have a Northwest Forest pass, America The Beautiful Pass or have a day use pass as there is no pay station at this TH. There was a snow storm the day before I went dumping up to 3 inches of fresh powder on the trail in some places. Snow in the lower elevations of the trail started melting out as I was finishing my hike. The TH is across the road from parking area. Lemei Trail to Wapiki lake is a moderate hike. It's 7.26 miles RT if doing the lake only out and back. I would say good for small children. Not handicap accessible. There is a camp spot in between the lake and the pond. Lemei trail is a hard hike. Steep ascent and can be difficult to navigate, make sure you have a map with you. I went up the old trail which has a bunch of debris on trail and down the new trail (by the trail #34 sign there is a turn off). It looked like there was a couple turn offs on trail, but no signs on the lemei trail for as far as I went (to the talus field). Beautiful overlook of the lake on this trail with a dusting of fresh snow. Hiked 1.48 miles on the lemei trail going above the lake. 8.74 miles with 2174ft elevation gain. The road coming in was washboard and had potholes but when I left was re dirted and had very few rough areas. Saw 3 women and 3 dogs on trail.

hiking
10 months ago

Good hike up. Amazing view of the lake...nice trails all around . Lots of mosquitoes I’d suggest some off spray

Sat Oct 13 2018

Great hike. Best fall colors.

hiking
Thu Sep 06 2018

One of my favorite places to hike Aug-Oct. The first bit is a boring up hill climb, but then you get to great mountain views, lakes and huckleberries. There were still quite a few huckleberries labor day weekend. If you want views I'd recommend following the directions up to Lemei rock. If you prefer lakes, continue on trail 33 to the PCT. Take a left for about 1.6 miles, then left again just before Junction lake on the Lemei Lake trail for 2 miles back to complete the loop and head back to the car. You'll pass 6 lakes and lots of huckleberry meadows on this pretty flat loop. A side trip to Deep Lake is only 0.2miles from Cultus lake and has a nice view of Adams. Not sure why this says no dogs, my two labs came along and had a blast swimming in all the lakes. A stop at Backwoods Brewery in Carson after makes for a perfect day!

hiking
Tue May 29 2018

Tried to hike this weekend. Roads are still snow covered over 4 miles away from trailhead.

hiking
Fri Aug 25 2017

Epic swim in the lake. Great views. No bugs. Perfect day on the trail.

hiking
Sat Jul 15 2017

I did not get to Lake Wapiki because the trail eventually was covered in packed and mushy snow. Yes, snow mid-July! The first 0.7 miles is quite the workout but settles after that. The mosquitos are pretty voracious around Deep Lake and Cultus Lake. I'm so glad I had bug spray but that wasn't blood sucking bug proof enough. The Indian Heaven backcountry is amazingly beautiful and this hike easily has become one of my top 5.

backpacking
Thu Oct 06 2016

The most beautiful place in the fall

hiking
Mon Sep 05 2016

Amazing all along!!!

Thu Jul 07 2016

Spectacular

camping
Mon Sep 28 2015

Fantastic!

Tue Jun 02 2015

Beautiful as always. So much snow still. But it was before the ravenous Mosquitos too. Gaitors or snowshoes would have helped

hiking
Thu Aug 22 2013

It does not matter if you choose trail 33 or trail 108, you will go up some crazy hills and walk through some beautiful country of the wonderous Indian Heaven Wilderness. You pass several lakes, awesome viewpoints and a mind that becomes cleansed as the nature takes its course. I did this trail with a friend of mine but have done this trail in the past when I was a child with my Dad. This was a tribute trek to my Father as he passed away and the memories that flooded me were intense but not overwhelming because I was doing something my dad and I are passionate about. This is truly an awesome trail.

hiking
9 months ago

hiking
10 months ago

hiking
11 months ago

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