Packwood Lake #78
Oct 26, 2001
- Type of Outing
- Day hike
- Read More in our Hiking Guide
- Hike: Packwood Lake
- Region: South Cascades -- Goat Rocks
- Agency: USFS Cowlitz Valley Ranger District, Packwood Office
- Trails: Packwood Lake (#78), (#)
- Avg Rating: 3.57
My brother,one of my sons & I did our annual night hike in to Packwood Lake. Partial moon with broken clouds and fairly ""warm"" for this time of the year. Beautiful views of the lights down in the Packwood Area. We parked at the main trailhead, then took the service road in to the lake as this is easier with head lamps. We had my sons 2 dogs with us, with their own packs. The service road going in is in pretty good condition, no logs down, no wash outs. Arriving at the lake we head for the campsite that we use all the time, 1/2 way along the lake. No one else at the lake. Beautiful!! There is one rather large log down across the trail about 1/8th to 1/4th mile from the N end of the lake. It is fairly easy to get across, and since we came in, a couple of people on horses chopped part of it out so it is easier yet to get across. Other than that log, just a few branches down here and there from the wind storm prior to that weekend. No rain on the 26th, and just drizzle all day on the 27th, starting about 10:00 a.m. We hiked to the end of the lake and around that, crossing about 5 creeks which come from the Packwood Saddle and Packwood Glacier area. Of course I managed to fall in to one of the creeks, so embarrising, but not hurt. Lots of elk activity at the upper end of the lake, but did not see any.
The drizzle stopped at 5:00 p.m. on the 27th, and we woke on Sunday, the 28th to beautiful clear skies and fantastic scenery. The snow level was just above our camp, probably about 300-400 feet. It was 28 degrees when we got up. Such beauty! Saw some ducks on the lake, heard a couple of owls but did not see them.
We had a nice tarp over the eating area, so stayed cozy and warm with our campfire and cozy tents. We each had our own tent and that was nice.
The trail is in good condition, not muddy or washed out. The wooden bridges and walkways were very slick coming out on the 28th due to the freezing weather so you need to be really careful. We took the trail back out, and it is in good condition, no standing water and no logs down at this time. There is one area where we are going to lose the trail due to large boulders breaking off and coming down. They are ready to go now and are located about 1/2 way to the lake, just approximate. You can't miss them, on the left side and up, a place where there has been acitivity prior.