Lake Ingalls

HARD 80 reviews
#2 of 137 trails in

Lake Ingalls is a 9.5 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Cle Elum, Washington that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from July until October.

DISTANCE
9.5 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
2847 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

backpacking

camping

hiking

rock climbing

snowshoeing

walking

forest

lake

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

scramble

snow

no dogs

From Seattle drive east on I-90 to East Cle Elum, exit 85. Cross over the freeway overpass and turn right (northbound) on State Route 970. Cross the Teanaway River bridge, and in another mile turn left onto Teanaway Road. Drive north on Teanaway Road, veering right as it becomes first the North Fork Teanaway Road and then unpaved Forest Road 9737 at 29 Pines Campground. Follow Road 9737 about 9.5 miles until it ends at the Esmeralda Trailhead where the trails to Lake Ingalls and Longs Pass begin.

backpacking
1 month ago

This is an incredible overnight trip. I know there are a lot of questions right now about trail conditions and trailhead access. We were skeptical ourselves. However, as of Sunday morning, the trailhead is easily accessible for high clearance vehicles. Two friends and I went out in a Honda Accord and had to park before the last wash-out, although this wash-out is only MAYBE a quarter of a mile from the trailhead, so the extra walk is not bad at all. Intermittent snow on your way up to Ingalls Pass, although its all easily passable. Once you reach the pass the North side is all under snow. The trail can be hard to find at times, but now that the snow has been worked in, you should be able to follow where others have gone. You will need microspikes or crampons for sure. We camped in the basin for a night and it was spectacular. Got a little chilly at night but not bad. The lake is gorgeous and worth the hike up from your camp site, although, it is quite steep and will make you work for it. If the weather turns and the trail gets more snow, I don't see how it would be passable without snowshoes--there is already 4-18" depending on area.

hiking
2 months ago

The ridge line and meadow was my favorite part, with all the beautiful golden Larches in full display.

backpacking
3 months ago

Stumbled upon this by mistake. We planned another hike, but was closed off due to fires. This definitely is a moderate hike. Uphill nearly all the way for about 3 miles. The views up the side are nice! Once over the ridge, you have two paths to the lake. We took the shorter path down to set up camp. These views were even better! The next day we did the one mile hike to the lake - then my breath was taken away (and not just from hiking!). The lake is surreal. Definitely go to the left around the lake to the far side. You don't want to miss that!
Hiking back from the lake we found plenty of spots for water. Still - we filtered most of it.
The last day, we hiked up and then the 3 miles down hill.
So very happy we came here! Would absolutely come again!

backpacking
3 months ago

Nice view

backpacking
4 months ago

camping
4 months ago

Spectacular setting once you crest Ingalls pass. It's a bummer the road is closed 1 mi from the trailhead (no good reason), but maybe it keeps (some of) the crowds away. Headlight basin is a spectacular spot to camp as well (as many know).

4 months ago

Awesome awesome views. Not much more to say. Pictures really don't do it justice.

hiking
4 months ago

Great Hike, hit this beautiful Alpine lake along our way to Climb the South Ridge of Ingalls Peak! The lake is worth the trip on it's own!!!

4 months ago

Great hike!

hiking
5 months ago

What a view! Made the hike up on a Friday to avoid some crowds (counted less than 20 people total) and was everything the reviews say and more.

The trail has an extra 2 miles r/t due to the road closure but that stretch is easy going so it's more a hassle than effort. The first half of the hike is in good shape with a few narrow ridges for the height-adverse but easy to follow. The second half (stick to the right side / high trail to avoid down climbing) has a few patches of snow and some melting out rocks but nothing too bad to deal with.

The final stretch is not all that defined with several paths up and various carins around the way so plan on route finding along the way.

As for the lake, Steward, the goats and the views at large. Wow!

7 months ago

I've hiked this trail a number of times, some as day trips, once as a multi day backpacking trip. I'd have to say while the lake is beautiful, it's much easier to camp in the valley between the first peak and the lake. Going around the lake with a backpack took me and my partner over an hour. Definitely want to go back though

hiking
8 months ago

Did this Hike Last summer Late July ... I think this is definitely a strenuous hike . No time to warm up the second you get on the trail your climbing at a incline . I went up with a group with out poles or a map . Would of given it 5 stars if the trail was easier to follow but either way it was a good hike . Following the pile of rocks is confusing but doable. Didn't see any of the goats which sucked but it was a great hike ... was a 95 degree day in the Yakima valley that day but was only 75-80 degrees at the top and the lake was freezing . Well worth the hike . I used a fit bit to track my hike out and back to rig was 12 miles ...

hiking
Tuesday, September 06, 2016

Amazing hike and view!!!.About 10 miles before you get to the parking lot, road is full of dirt, gravel and small potholes, I drove around 20-25 mph while passing that road, it's passable not too bad. I got there around 7:00 am on Sunday morning and the parking lot was full but you can park on the side of road too.
I started at 7:00 am took few small breaks and got up at lake around 9:35am. Last half mile Trail is not marked well, I was told by people to follow cairns but they were everywhere, it was hard to find the directions of lake. First 3.5 miles Trail is in very good shape, but be careful after that.(if you are not sure just ask someone, stay on trail. ) Weather changes really quick there. lake was amazing, view was mind blowing!!!! I did walked around the lake to the other side which is totally different view. There were no goats at lake may ,be it was too cold the day I went but I saw one while coming back. Took me 2 hours to hike back to parking lot. Hike is not too hard if you are regular hiker but it was hard for me.

Check list:
1. Gloves, rain gears, hiking shoes and poles are important specially for this hike (since the weather changes really quick, also because of the tail condition you need all the above).
2. Bug spray, first aid kit (bugs were not bad at starting but as you get to lake they are annoying).
3. Start early the parking lot gets full quick and be careful for the 10 miles before you get to parking lot.
4. Get enough water and snacks.
5. Take map with you it's posted on board too, take a picture it helps since the tail after 3.5 is not marked.
6. Northwest forest pass required.

Be safe :)
It's Is such a nice hike, will highly recommend!! (Not easy, but worth it)

Have a blessed day!!
Enjoy

hiking
Sunday, September 04, 2016

We hiked into Lake Ingalls trail as a group of 4. It was quite an amazing experience but definitely not easy. It took us more than 2 hours to hike in. The weather was bad, so chilly during the entire hike. The sun barely came out. It rained and hailed for quite a bit. But proudly we have made it to the top. Probably it is the best hike for me and Alex so far.

Some tips:
In September, you probably want to bring thick clothes with you, wearing long pants. Weather is definitely changeable. We saw many good camp grounds on the way, some of them are even close to the stream, but remember to start hike-in earlier around noon so that you can get a good spot.

Saturday, September 03, 2016

Very good trail. Well maintained. But not easy. It was straight up the whole way. I went looking for goats. Didn't find the and scrambled around the back side of the lake. This is a super sketchy pass!!! I found the goats and made my way out. It was sept 1 and 34 degrees. It snowed, hail and rained. Weather was bad high elevation rock was deadly slippery. End of the day I would go back. I did a ultra light bag, would have been 4 hrs round trip but I spent 2 hours looking for goats. This is a very hard hike.

backpacking
Sunday, August 14, 2016

Aug 11, 2016 (Thu - Sat) - Lake Ingalls seems to be the best kept secret everyone knows about. It's a way to experience the beauty of the Alpine Lakes Wilderness for those of us unlucky enough not to win an Enchantments permit. With full packs the hike in took us 2.75 hours. The hike out took 1.75 hours. Lots of people hiking in on Saturday. The parking lot was packed around 11am and cars were stacked up on the side of the road. Bugs this year are out of control. They were pretty much a constant annoyance even with bug spray. We're still nursing our "wounds" a day after returning. Despite this, you can't beat the beauty of the place and it was the perfect location to watch the Perseids. Oh yeah, goats everywhere who like to remind you that you are the visitor and they live there.

hiking
Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Hiked into Lake Ingalls yesterday, 07/25/2016. They just opened it to the trail head yesterday afternoon. Rough in spots.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

By far the best hike I have done yet!
The road to access parking lot is closed. You have to park at iron horse trailhead, the road is blocked with concrete blocks. This will add an additional 1.1 mile but keep walking on the road past the road closed sign and u will come to the trailhead! Make sure to get there early. We arrived around 8:30 and there was already about 20 cars parked.
Great views the entire way! Tons of goats so be careful! This hike is just beautiful! It was a little hard but I'm 16 weeks prego and still did it so its do able! Is not as hard as the rating made it seem. Bring plenty of water and make sure u take lots of stops to see all the wildlife and flowers! Beautiful scenery up there!

hiking
Friday, July 22, 2016

Lake Ingalls has got to be top 5 best hikes I've ever done. Absolutely blew me away. Went on 7/19 and had the lake to myself for over an hour. Well, to myself and the 20 mountain goats that followed me around, haha! Weather was amazing and the views are breathtaking!

hiking
Saturday, July 16, 2016

MUST HIKE!!!! If you did not win lottery to be able to go to Enchantments this is the next best thing. Spectacular-cannot even describe it. To add, you are surrounded by wondering, wonderful creatures-mountain goats. Do not get carried away, they can be dangerous.
I have done many different hikes for many years-THIS IS IT. YOU MUST HIKE THIS.
Condition of the trail: Excellent, with some scramble at the top. And don't forget to stay away from the goats. They will try to get close to you. Throwing rocks toward (not at the goats but their direction) will make these creatures to keep safe distance. There were few patches of snow but not enough to have to wear microspikes, By the lake it gets very,very cold. Grab an extra layer with you.

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