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Crater Lake

Central Cascades > Stevens Pass - West
47.6996, -121.5335 Map & Directions
Length
2.0 miles, roundtrip
Elevation Gain
550 feet
Highest Point
3500 feet
Calculated Difficulty About Calculated Difficulty
Easy/Moderate
Looking down at Crater Lake basin. Photo by HarryBiped. Full-size image
  • Lakes

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

None

The short route to Crater Lake was originally constructed by miners and fishermen, and is NOT a well-maintained trail. However, the tread is well defined and generally easy to follow. Continue reading

Rating
3.86 out of 5

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Hiking Crater Lake

The route to Crater Lake was originally constructed by miners and fishermen, and is NOT a well-maintained trail. However, the tread is well defined and generally easy to follow.

It begins by contouring the hillside for a few hundred yards, and then begins to climb through the woods, roughly on a route parallel with the outlet stream from Crater Lake. In fact, if you lose the trail (which is easy to do because of frequent blow-downs) reaching the outlet stream will tell you that you have traveled too far west.

At times, views allow you to look out over the Upper Tolt River valley, where the outlet from Crater Lake drains. The climb up the hillside is steep but short, and soon the route begins to flatten out, as it travels through wet meadows. Prepare for some mud here too. The outlet stream is near now, and some small waterfalls provide a distraction from the mud. After about 1 mile, the trail finally reaches the lake at the outlet, where a large campsite exists in a wooded area. This lake occupies a subalpine basin, and affords views up to the cliffs and ridges of the surrounding peaks.

The lakeshore is easy to navigate, and provides many nice rocks and rest areas.

Crater Lake

Map & Directions

Trailhead
Co-ordinates: 47.6996, -121.5335 Open in Google Maps

Before You Go

See weather forecast

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

None

WTA Pro Tip: Save a copy of our directions before you leave! App-based driving directions aren't always accurate and data connections may be unreliable as you drive to the trailhead.

Getting There

Drive US 2 from Monroe to the Money Creek Campground turnoff just before the town of Skykomish. Turn right onto the Miller River road and drive a short distance to the town of Miller River. Take a right on the Money Creek road, and drive approximately 7.3 miles to the road's end and a small parking area. The unofficial trailhead is here.

More Hike Details

Trailhead

Central Cascades > Stevens Pass - West

Crater Lake (#1018)

Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest, Skykomish Ranger District

Guidebooks & Maps

USGS Mt Phelps

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Crater Lake

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