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Domke Lake

Central Cascades > Entiat Mountains/Lake Chelan
48.1907, -120.6278 Map & Directions
7.0 miles, roundtrip
Elevation Gain
1,100 feet
Highest Point
2,200 feet
Calculated Difficulty About Calculated Difficulty
  • Mountain views
  • Wildlife
  • Established campsites
  • Dogs allowed on leash
  • Lakes

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

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This trail winds through fire-ravaged terrain to a quiet lake in the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest that borders Lake Chelan. Continue reading

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Hiking Domke Lake

The Domke Lake trail is a great day hike with family, provided you are staying in Holden Village (in which case you can bus down to the trailhead), or docked at boat launch in Lucerne, at the north end of Lake Chelan. To get to the trailhead, either take the Lady of the Lake ferry or your own boat to Lucerne and dock at Refrigerator Harbor. Once there, hike along the Railroad Creek trail east for about one quarter mile to the Domke Lake trailhead.

You will be able to see Chelan, the third deepest lake in America, from several lookout points along the way. This trail is also great for beginning backpackers, as it is only 3.5 miles to your destination with a moderate slope. 

Formerly, a group of cabins stood at the point where the trail meets the lake, but they were lost to the 2015 Wolverine Creek fire. Sid Burns, the longtime caretaker of this resort, can still be found in the area.

There are several camp sites at Domke Lake, but they are all currently closed to camping due to fire damage.

If you have the opportunity to stay the night, you will hear the buzz of the forest and see many forest critters such as, chipmunks, bats, owls, crickets, frogs and other birds. Large predators like bears and cougars have not been spotted in quite some time but it is not to say that they haven't been seen before. Same goes for the occasional raccoon or skunk.

Note: Alternative routes to access Domke Lake include hiking to the lake via Emerald Park (7.6 miles one-way) or beginning on foot from Holden Village (13.5 miles one-way). 

WTA worked here in 2019, 2018, 2015, 2014, 2013 and 2011!

Hike Description Written by
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Domke Lake

Map & Directions

Co-ordinates: 48.1907, -120.6278 Open in Google Maps

Before You Go

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Parking Pass/Entry Fee


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

To get to Domke Lake there are several options and none involve driving a car. You can take the Lady of the Lake ferry, which leaves from the downtown Chelan area. If you are equipped with your own boat, you can boat up Lake Chelan, dock at Refrigerator Harbor, and hike from there. The trail begins at a junction with the road between Refrigerator Harbor and Lucerne.

Keep in mind that a Federal Dock Site Boat Permit is required from May 1 – October 31 for use of all National Forest and Park Service docks on Lake Chelan. Permits must be pre-purchased before docking. Purchase a $5 Day Permit or $40 Seasons Pass at the Chelan or Entiat Ranger Districts, or Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest Headquarters Offices; or from one of many Chelan and Manson Area vendors. To order by phone, call the Chelan Ranger District @ 509-682-4900 and pay via credit card during business hours. Permits may also be purchased at Stehekin.

More Hike Details


Central Cascades > Entiat Mountains/Lake Chelan

Domke Lake (#1280)

Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest, Chelan Ranger District

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Domke Lake

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