Explore the most popular camping trails near Darrington with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

hiking
18 days ago

The hike wasn’t too bad for someone who isn’t very athletic like myself. It was just very long so prepare for that! My boyfriend and I went out today for my birthday and we wore many layers but ended up getting drenched in rain water, river water (you have to cross many, some can get up to mid calf in depth) and ended up turning around before we actually reached Goat Lake because we were worried we wouldn’t make it back before sundown. We hiked Lower Elliot on the way to the lake and Upper Elliot on the way back.. which we recommend because taking Upper Elliot back allows you to descend most of the time. Our advice: wear rain boots in the rainy seasons, dress in layers, maybe bring food because of how long the hike is (took us 4+ hours and remember we didn’t even make it to the lake), and start out early so you can take your time!

hiking
1 month ago

Nice day heading up to Goat Lake. There is some snow on the trail but not deep or icy. Road is very potholed on the way to trail but manageable. Hike was very pretty, beautiful forest and Mountain View’s and pretty easy going.

1 month ago

12/8/18
Took the lower trail out and upper trail back. Definitely recommend taking both trails as on the lower you get views of the river and upper you get better views of the mountains. Upper trail is a bit longer so be prepared for that if you use it for the way back. Both are well maintained and it's a fairly easy hike.
The lake is absolutely stunning and views of the mountains and waterfalls won't disappoint!
Still now snow cover as of date above, although some icy spots during stream crossings. Mountain loop highway has no snow as well. Dirt portion is in a bit of rough shape so low cars might struggle with all the pot holes.

Did this hike today, no snow, very flat, just really long. There were a couple of little creeks to pass over, nothing crazy. We didn't finish the hike, it would have been dark by the time we got back and we waited to be leaving before it got dark. I would definitely plan on leaving earlier next time. Only saw a few people didn't seem to be a very popular hike but it was very well kept, looked like it was recently serviced! Other than a few potholes on the way up the road to the trailhead and our poor time management it was a pretty nice hike.

hiking
2 months ago

Great long hike with rewarding views at the end. There are beautiful waterfalls along the way.

hiking
2 months ago

Absolutely stunning. We did this hike in a day that was supposed to be rainy but for the most part there were no rain. The trail was very beautiful, it was among these trees, mosses, fallen leaves and ferns. It was one of the most beautiful trails I've seen in Washington.
The hike is super moderate and the gain is very gradual. We did the loop, taking the Upper Elliot trail hiking up and Lower Elliot trail hiking down. My AllTrails app says 11.4 miles total. We walked around the lake too.
At this time of year, there were many waterfalls on the way up and also around the lake itself. All were really gorgeous. I should also mention, we took highway 530 and the tree colors were really beautiful.

hiking
2 months ago

Was intimidated by the length but it was totally worth it. Beautiful. Lots of waterfalls along the way. Trail gets a little sloppy at times, meaning it was unmarked and we were a bit unsure but it was still easy to follow. Towards the end it was a bit uphill and tiring but tolerable. Will for sure recommend. We saw a total of three people the entire hike.

hiking
2 months ago

Really a lot of fun- agree that Lower Elliott is a lot more interesting with water views and lots of up and down. The middle flats are pretty through the birch forests and easy...the switchbacks just below the lake will kick you a little after that but the lake views are worth it.

my dog and I had a wonderful hike. my dog went to swim in the lake and she loved it!

hiking
3 months ago

Beautiful hike!! The fallen leaves, old growth forest, interesting mushroom groves, waterfalls, and ending at the the lake. Loved it!

Beautiful place. The hike was easy but a bit long for my daughter and boyfriend. The lower trail is much better than the upper. The lower trail fallows the creek and is up and down The upper trail is a long gentle grade up and a long gentle grade down. It would be great for jogging but it’s not very scenic. The lake was beautiful and the views of the mountains is glorious. I would do it again for sure.

hiking
3 months ago

Wifey and I took the four kiddos on this trek. We had to carry two of them on our backs. The first 2-3 miles were just up hill. The lake at the end was well worth it though!

We hiked this trail Sunday, 10/7. Temperature was in the 50's with a little sprinkle that we really couldn't feel until we reached the lake. Fall is my favorite time to hike to alpine lakes because no bugs, no crowds, and gorgeous foliage. Round trip, this hike took 5 hours with taking about 30 minutes to admire and explore the lake area. We took the lower elliot up and the upper elliot down. To be honest, I wouldn't waste my time with the upper elliot again... it is longer and gravel road-like. The lower elliot runs along the creek and offers diversity and more challenge. Fresh snow appeared to be accumulating on the peaks above the lake! All in all, we enjoyed it; serene and leisurely.
Also, no bears in site.

3 months ago

Amazing

hiking
3 months ago

I did this hike last summer in June and it was amazing. I hiked this again yesterday (09/23/18) and it’s just as gorgeous as I remembered. This time it was awesome to see the orange and yellow leaves everywhere. Fall in the PNW is my favorite. We found it is the best route to take lower Elliot there and back. It follows the river and has a lot more to see. It isn’t as flat as upper Elliot but it’s worth it.

backpacking
4 months ago

We went on Sept 2nd for our honeymoon. The trail was great, rugged but definitely worth it!

Great runnable trail to an amazingly scenic lake if the sun is out. Most of the trail is through woods and the bushes along it rub you along the way. Important to note if certain plants give you rashes you may want to wear long sleeves. There is a great waterfall that comes off the lake in the woods. You can get to it by going a bit off trail and following the sound. It’s worth seeing. The trailhead is off Mountain Loop Highway however this highway turns into a dirt road with some large potholes so drive carefully as you’ll likely spend 30 minutes on the dirt road part. You’ll be 35 miles from the nearest gas station or cell service some plan accordingly. There have been bear sightings here too. I post photos of my hiking adventures on instagram under “adventuringKR”, which include some solid Goat Lake pics from a nice sunny day. Great place to camp.

Okay hike with a nice lake at pay-dirt and a pretty rushing river along long parts to f the hike. Why only 3 stars? other mountain lakes in the same area are better and with easier access. While we enjoyed the hike, it’s not one we’d do again.

Nice Hike. An adolescent bear wandered up the trail while we were having lunch near the mid-point of the lake. We stood tall and made noise and, fortunately, it backed off and chose another route. Definitely our closest encounter with a bear, tho we were intent on eating and weren't making a lot of noise before it came upon us.

Would hike it again, probably skip lunch at the lake.

backpacking
4 months ago

My wife, 120 lbs German Shepherd, and I did this hike. We took upper Elliot the way there (~6.2miles) and t was generally flat, slight incline until about the last mile or so. If you stay on the trail and don’t get distracted by the first waterfall, it’s switchbacks the rest of the way up. However if you get off trail, you likely follow the trail of ‘travelers-lost’ and likely go straight up adding a ton of incline. We did the upper Elliot in about 3.5 hours with back packs.

The lake is worth every bit of the walk. You’re not allowed to camp as close to the water as you would like, but the designated camping area is nice, well-used making most of the sites flat for sleeping.

On the way out we took lower Elliot and it was about ~4.6 miles and that took less than two hours. Much better views than upper Elliot. Many wonderful waterfalls and sounds of water flowing down the river.

This was my wife’s first backpacking trip and she loved it.

So I started my hike at the trail head sign at 12:03. Started out walking through A dense forest with a very nicely maintained trail, some water crossings and cool small bridges made of tree slabs. Eventually it turns into a old growth forest of Firs and cedars. So many magnificent trees. It just keeps on going and going forever. Being a arborist I found that part amazing... so at 5.9 miles there’s a very nice open wrest spot but still in the forests. My advise is to take a breather and refuel for 30 minutes or so if you are packing heavy. It would also be a nice spot to pitch a tent. The elevation then starts. The trail then becomes very narrow and weedy. The views then start to open up but i had none with the rain and clouds killing the visibility for me. Blue berries everywhere! Very nice treat they where. I got up to the PCT trail sign around 430 and the mileage read 9.3 right there. I hung out for 25 minutes until my fingers started to go numb from the wind and rain coming down on me. I headed back down around 5 and it was only getting colder with not a view 1 at all. I got back to the car around 7 40-7 50 with. My moving time was 7hrs and 15 minutes. Backpacking in would be quite a bit more challenge but my pack only weighed 27 lbs.

backpacking
5 months ago

It was a fabulous backpacking trip. we only stayed one night but it was just right amount hiking. Took my 70 lbs dog with me and he did just fine. we did see some bear tracks but no bear. the views are awesome! well worth it.

hiking
5 months ago

Absolutely loved this hike! Took Lower Elliott on the way up and Upper Elliott on the way down. Lower had beautiful scenery and soothing water sounds. The last mile of the hike is the toughest part and the trail gets a bit confusing but the lake is worth every bit. So beautiful, great for a swim and plenty of trees for your hammock ;) The waterfalls near the lake were equally breathtaking! We went later in the day on a Sunday and ran into very few people, even at the lake. Upper is perfect for the way down because it’s majority downhill. As mentioned in another review, make sure you have the right pass because they’ll get ya. I will 100% be coming back here.

Great trail but easily could be a difficult designation. The hike up to white pass is no joke. Great views on clear days, definitely a must do hike...

hiking
5 months ago

I do both lower and upper trail I like more the lower one batter view but what shack me is the huge water full hiding in the trail you will love it more of the lake

hiking
5 months ago

It was an awesome hike! We took our young 5 year old and almost 7 year old and they agreed! The waterfalls on the way and the lake at the top was a perfect place for lunch! Can’t wait until they are a little bit older and we can backpack and tent it up there!!

backpacking
5 months ago

It was quite a hike the way up there, but the view was definitely worth it! Took a dip in the cold water - felt amazing after the long hike :)

Day one from trailhead to White Pass is a hard push up, up, up through endless switchbacks. I was rewarded with the most awesome spring trickling down the mountain as I reached the Pacific Crest Trail. The campsite was buggy, so my $1.50 mosquito head net was totally worth it, Wearing long sleeves and long pants were also necessary due to biting flies. However, the temperature was about 70 degrees despite being 91 degrees down in Darrington.
Day 2 was my favorite due to plentiful wild flowers still in bloom and tons of marmots scrambling along directly on the trail. We never had to filter water at the stagnant ponds; there were trickling springs at multiple spots. There is a good one immediately after leaving the PCT and heading towards Pilot Ridge. We took the high route to Blue Lake. It is a strenuous, fully exposed hike, but doable. We only lost the trail at the very top for a bit. We easily re-found the trail. (I would NOT do this route in snow.) The camp sites are good. The lake is beautiful. It was refreshing to soak my feet.
On Day 3, we totally missed the trail leaving Blue Lake, because there are many crisscrossing trails through camp.. We had heard of this based on reviews on other websites and we STILL missed the trail. This is where Alltrails SAVED me. I was recording the route on my phone. I could see where I was and where I was supposed to be. We just headed in the direction we needed to go across a random wild flower laden mountainside. We could not see the trail until we were five feet from it. So again, the Alltrails app saved me. The rest of the day was not very spectacular. It is mostly just a lot of downward hiking. When you reach the river at the bottom, there is not bridge -- jsut fallen logs. When you cross the logs, there is no trail up to the trail that takes you home. You have to bushwack your your way to the trail.

backpacking
5 months ago

We went yesterday and had a lot of fun! We did both Upper and Lower Elliott. Lower is the more scenic one, but also a little more difficult, but I'd recommend doing both. It took us about 5 hours total, but we also hung out at the top for an hour or so. We did hear someone say they had seen Elliott the bear on the Lower trail, but sadly, or thankfully, we did not see him. The view is worth the hike and the trail itself is also pretty fun. I will say the road getting there could use a lot of work. We were in a Jeep, but I think any car could make it, just drive slow.

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