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Lake Serene Trail and Bridal Veil Falls

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Mount Baker Snoqualmie National Forest

Lake Serene Trail and Bridal Veil Falls is a 10.2 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Gold Bar, Washington that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, running, nature trips, and bird watching and is best used from May until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 10.2 miles Elevation Gain: 3,261 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

hiking

nature trips

bird watching

running

forest

lake

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

blowdown

rocky

snow

Note: As of May 2020, the parking lot has reopened but the restrooms are still closed. Lake Serene is an alpine lake nestled in the Cascade mountains of Washington State. Lake Serene Trail is a popular hike within the Mount Baker Snoqualamie Forest. The trailhead can be accessed off of Mount Index Road near Stevens Pass. Make sure to get an early start in order to get a parking spot at the trailhead. What the trail lacks in length, it makes up for in elevation gain. The first mile and a half winds across a well manicured and slightly inclined path, at the end of which you can choose to go another mile on Bridal Veil Falls Trail to Bridal Veil Falls or another two miles to the main trail to Lake Serene. The extra mile is certainly worth the side trip to see the falls. One you have returned to Serene Lake Trail, the two miles to the lake traverse a large climb, through a series of long, wooden steps, rocky passages, and switchbacks. Approximately 1.4 miles into the lake trail, you will encounter a very steep grade. Once you reach the lake, you will be rewarded by the stunning blue lake is that is clear, cool, inviting, and surrounded by high ridges and remnants of the previous winter snowfall. Find a spot along this gorgeous lake to eat lunch and take a rest. From the lake, you can also cross a log bridge and take a short trail that will take you to a large, smooth rock named "Lunch Rock", where you will find people relaxing and jumping into the lake. When you are ready, return via the way you came. This is a great hike and a must see destination that will greatly satisfy your sense of adventure and search of natural beauty. A Northwest Forest Pass is required.

hiking
49 minutes ago

We got there at 8am and the parking lot wasn’t too busy. We went to the falls and it was incredible but a bit muddy. Going to Lake Serene is extremely rocky with a lot of switchbacks so be prepared for that. When we got to the lake it was extremely beautiful and barely anyone there. As we got back it was pretty busy and maybe 10-20% wore masks. The bathrooms are still closed as of 07/06/20.

hiking
20 hours ago

Less than 2% of people wearing masks. No social distancing possible. Beautiful! Do not miss the falls. The lake is absolutely beautiful. Accommodate a 20 to 30 minutes break by the lake. Expect to walk between 3 1/2 hours and 5 1/2 hours, depending on your pace. Plenty of parking. Heavy traffic going back west mid, late afternoon. Wear. A. Mask.

hiking
bugs
muddy
rocky
scramble
20 hours ago

Breathtakingly beautiful. I would definitely say this is a moderate to hard hike. My 3 friends and I went up to Lake Serene on Sun 7/5. We got to the parking lot at around 6:45 and back to our car by 4:30. We took our time with lots of stops along the way and about an hour spent at the actual lake itself. We had two beginner hikers with us, packed lots of food and water and made it out safely

hiking
rocky
1 day ago

arrived at 7am...only a handful of cars in the lot. only passed one couple heading up. if you don’t like rocks or some serious switchbacks, this probably isn’t the hike for you. your legs will be burnin. gorgeous lake & great rock to spread out on - there was only one other couple on the rock when we got up there around 9am. go super early so you’re not stuck enjoying the view /atmosphere with tons of people. passed several people on our way down but was impressed with how willing everyone was to step to the side to let others pass...about 90% in masks. great hike, did it in a little over 4 hours.

hiking
rocky
1 day ago

Trail is great, our tracker said it was 9 mile round trip including the falls excursion and 3300 feet of gain. Biggest issue is how crowded it was, there had to be 500 ppl on it

hiking
muddy
rocky
1 day ago

Awesome trail and amazing views of the lake and waterfalls. A tad busy though and plenty of stairs

hiking
muddy
rocky
scramble
1 day ago

Great hiking! We got there at 8am and the parking lot was almost full. I just saw few people on the way up. During the way back it was a little bit crowded and most of the people wasn’t wearing mask or even doing social distance at all. There were big groups without mask Please, respect us and use mask during the hike. You don’t need to wear it all the time, just when see someone! I’m sure it won’t hurt you. Mask surviver here and Corona free

hiking
muddy
rocky
1 day ago

hiking
bugs
muddy
off trail
rocky
1 day ago

It’s a very long trail but at the end it was worth it. It starts out on a flat plane but eventually turns into a very steep incline. Once at the top the view is amazing, pack a jacket/sweater because it gets a little cold when near the lake. It was very rigorous near the end due to the pathway made up of jagged rocks. The only issue I had with this trail was the multiple fallen down trees that made it difficult to trek the mountain. Most of the downed trees were 3/4 of the way up near the multiple inclined stairs. It’s a great trail, I highly recommend it.

hiking
bugs
muddy
rocky
1 day ago

We got there today around 6am. Parking lot wasn’t full, just a few cars at that time. We stopped at the waterfall (so beautiful, you have to stop there) then we made it to the lake around 9am. We got back at the car around 11am. On our way down we saw a looot people going up. The parking lot was FULL, and people were parking at the street. It’s not a easy hike so go prepared to go up a lot of stairs and rocks!

hiking
bugs
muddy
rocky
2 days ago

hiking
muddy
rocky
scramble
2 days ago

Beautiful views after spending what seemed like 5 hours scrambling up rocks, but was more like 2 1/2. Well worth the hike there, but very crowded. Descending hikers would not yield to ascending, making it a much more difficult hike than it had to be. We saw a lot of people, probably 30+ that were not wearing proper hiking gear and were not practicing safe social distancing. I would not recommend going during any weekend day, as the trail becomes overcrowded with people who are not respectful of the trail or other hikers. The trail itself is rocky most of the way up, fairly muddy, and a bit slippery on the way down. There are plenty of parts where you cross small streams and walk on slick rocks. Lots of people hiked with poles, but myself and my partner did not find them necessary. It was a beautiful day, but definitely bring layers so you can comfortably eat lunch at lake serene. It took us a total of 6 hours to hike from car door and back again, and we gained 2,667 feet of elevation in 5 miles. Be prepared for a tough hike, bring lunch to enjoy the beautiful lake, and wear slip and water resistant shoes.

hiking
bugs
great!
muddy
off trail
rocky
snow
2 days ago

this is a challenging, tiring but extremely rewarding journey

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