DISTANCE
13.5 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
3,146 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

backpacking

birding

camping

hiking

nature trips

walking

forest

lake

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

blowdown

snow

no dogs

backpacking
6 hours ago

A tough at times hike but absolutely worth it. Drive to trailhead is along a one-lane dirt road going into the mountains, nothing too scary but be ready to pullover for traffic. Beginning of hike is fairly flat and easy, but after a few hours you'll get into some steep elevation gains. Nothing hairy, just exhausting, especially if you're bringing a fully loaded pack. When you get to towards the first basin it may be incredibly buggy, bring some spray. Great views of the glacial mountains along the way. Once you get to Royal Lake you'll be tempted to chill or swim in the beautiful blue water, but if you've got the energy definitely continue on to the to upper basin. By the end you'll have seen some beautiful meadows and another stunning glacial lake surrounded by snowy mountains.

If camping, the lake campsites looked nice, but there's a number of sites. If looking for something more private, consider the Lower Royal Meadow sites, there were only 2 that I saw. You're right next to the creek so easy to filter water. Was really buggy, but I don't think you can get away from that anywhere. Quite chilly at night as well.