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Snoqualmie Lake

Snoqualmie Region

Visit this large, quiet lake in the heart of the Alpine Lakes Wilderness. Snoqualmie is accessible both via Highway 2 and the Middle Fork Snoqualmie Road. From the trailhead on Highway 2, it's 7.3 miles to Snoqualmie Lake, and from the Middle Fork Road, it's 9.2 miles. You can even make this a thru-hike if you can arrange a pick-up at the other end. Continue reading

Location

Snoqualmie Region -- North Bend Area
Jump to Map & Directions

Length

18.0 miles, roundtrip

Elevation

Gain: 1900 ft.
Highest Point: 3147 ft.

Rating

3.47 out of 5

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  • Mountain views
  • Wildlife
  • Established campsites
  • Waterfalls
  • Dogs allowed on leash
  • Lakes
  • Rivers

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

Northwest Forest Pass

WTA worked here in 2019, 2018, 2017 and 2014!

Visit this large, quiet lake in the heart of the Alpine Lakes Wilderness. Snoqualmie is accessible both via Highway 2 and the Middle Fork Snoqualmie Road. From the trailhead on Highway 2, it's 7.3 miles to Snoqualmie Lake, and from the Middle Fork Road, it's 9.2 miles. You can even make this a thru-hike if you can arrange a pick-up at the other end. 

If you're coming from the Middle Fork Road, drive 12 miles to the end of the road and park in a large lot just across a bridge. Starting from this area, admire the wide Taylor River as you cross a paved bridge. Pass a couple of dispersed camping sites and come to a junction with the Quartz Creek trail branching off to the left at about 0.5 miles. Take the right fork, staying on a relatively flat, rocky trail that heads through quiet forest. Moss-laden birches, western redcedars, and western hemlocks tower over you.

Along the trail, Taylor River rushes past you, and craggy Garfield Peak plays hide-and-seek through the trees. Near a creek crossing, the forest opens up, offering hikers a glimpse of a spire of Treen Peak.

Seven miles from the parking area for this trailhead, arrive at a fork. The righthand trail heads up a very brushy trail to Nordrum Lake in 2.5 miles. Your destination is down the lefthand trail, 2.2 miles away. Continue along the side of the river valley, crossing several feeder creeks and waterfalls, before arriving at a campsite on the northern shores of Snoqualmie Lake.

If you've decided to approach from Highway 2, you'll find the trail generally in good condition, with many sections stabilized by carefully-assembled log cribs. It's about 1.9 miles to Lake Dorothy, with an 800 foot elevation gain. From there, head to Bear Lake. Here, the trail begins to climb along the hillside, taking you above the lake. You'll gain 700 feet in 1.6 miles, on sometimes rough trail to reach the pass to Bear Lake. But the way is eased by occasional enjoyable views down to Lake Dorothy.

A short way beyond the pass Bear Lake can be seen glinting through the trees. It's a half-mile with a drop of 200 feet to get down to the western shore of the lake. Deer Lake is not far away. It's only 30 feet lower than Bear Lake, and at one point along the trail, bits of both lakes will be visible through the trees.

Once you've made it around the southern shores of Deer Lake, Snoqualmie Lake is just under a mile away. There is a campsite just before you arrive at the lake, but if you want to be on the lake, press on to the one lying on the north shore of the large, quiet lake.

Hike by WTA Community
Multiple authors contributed to this report

Snoqualmie Lake

Map & Directions

Trailhead
Co-ordinates: 47.5614, -121.5321 Open in Google Maps

Trailhead

Snoqualmie Region -- North Bend Area

Snoqualmie Lake (#1002)

Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest, Snoqualmie Ranger District

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Toilet Information

  • Toilet at trailhead

More information about toilets

Getting There

**The GPS marker on the map is dropped at the Snoqualmie Lake Trailhead**

To access Snoqualmie Lake from the Middle Fork Road: From Seattle, drive east on I-90 to exit 34. Turn left onto 468th Street and follow it about 0.3 miles to the junction with the signed Middle Fork Snoqualmie Road. Turn right and head up the Middle Fork Snoqualmie Road. Where the road forks with the Lake Dorothy Road, stay right and proceed straight onto the Middle Fork Road.

Stay on this road for 9.2 miles, passing the Middle Fork Snoqualmie trailhead and crossing a large bridge into the parking area for Garfield Ledges. A self-service Northwest Forest Pass station is back down the road at the Middle Fork Trailhead, and a pit toilet is available at the large graveled parking area.

The trailhead is half a mile down the closed road leading north out of the parking area.

To access the trailhead off Highway 2: Drive Hwy 2 some 45 miles east of Everett. Between mileposts 45 and 46, turn south on the Old Cascade Highway toward Money Creek Campground. You'll be confronted immediately by a sign proclaiming "Road Closed in 1.1 Miles." No problem, drive the 1.1 miles and just before the final Road Closed sign, turn right onto the Miller River Road.
This is initially marked as Forest Road 6410, then becomes 6412. It's about nine miles to the trailhead. The road is unpaved, and the first part may be reasonably smooth. In the final few miles, be alert for possible potholes. There is room for perhaps 20 cars at the trailhead. There is a toilet, but no immediate source of water. A Northwest Forest Pass is required.

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

Northwest Forest Pass
 

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Snoqualmie Lake

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