Hinman. At roughly a half-mile cross a sturdy bridge and continue climbing through deepening forest for another mile to Trout Lake. but all the other lakes were so beautiful! Despite its size there really aren't that many campsites, and throughout the day they filled quickly. Would have done it but it was getting late. Almost all the campsites were open. Definitely looking forward to returning for a few days with backpacks to complete the trek! There are several rocky patches, most were easy to navigate up, but led to some tricky footing on the way down. It’s definitely worth pushing past little heart and taking it one section at a time to assess this for yourselves. As we arrived at Copper lake we ran into another pair of hikers that had ventured beyond Copper Lake a bit, they said the snow got deeper as the trail went south beyond the lake, and didn't get higher than about 4300' of elevation scrambling around. To this point, the trail looks more like a streambed than a trail. Overall, great overnight trip! The Copper lake trail is quite easy at the beginning. We camped at Trout Lake and did a day hike up to Copper and Little Heart Lakes the next day (why haul a 20+ pound pack all the way up there). Trout lake is really pretty. Attractions & Considerations: This trail climbs gently to Trout Lake. Perfect for my 5 year old & dog in tow. Wow. It's also oddly humid; among the ferns it almost felt like we'd left the PNW and found the tropics. A spectacular deep blue lake, surrounded by barren peaks, still adorned in small snow fields, and sparse alpine firs. Unfortunately there is only one small area to sit at around the lake. At the 5 mile marker the trail crosses on a log bridge and begins a steep climb up to a series of lakes and the climbing route to Mt. Getting to Big Heart lake was also fine, the snow fields to be crossed were generally on shallow inclines. It offers an entirely different climatic region, four breathtaking lake views, technical terrain, and a moment for pause. I topped out out above Angeline and Big Heart and headed back to my elevation camp. At sunset, we pushed up to the ridge between Angeline and Big Heart and watched the sunset here. Directions from Skykomish: Drive 0.5 mile east on U.S. Hwy. The lake was beautiful and totally worth the hike. Trail Name – West Fork Foss Lakes Trail # 1064 Fees & Permits – Northwest Forest pass required, or can pay $5/day for a day pass. At the point that you need to cross the river, it will be over a log that has a step nailed into it on the opposite side, making it easier to step down, or up. East Fork Foss River Trail is a 9 mile trek along the Foss River towards the Alpine Lakes Wilderness. The first 5 miles are relatively flat and offer several campsites with views of the river rushing by. With 40 pounds of gear on my back and two trusty companions by my side, I hike into the forest, surrounding myself with its the sights and sounds. Sobieski 10.5 miles with an elevation of 4,300 feet. The lake itself is warm enough to swim in, and it also is a refreshing way to end a hike. the road up the the trailhead was decent with some monster potholes. ... Washington › Alpine Lakes Wilderness › Trout Lake via West Fork Foss Lakes Trail. We were relieved to make it to our first night destination: Malachite. This is not well marked so look carefully! Big Heart Lake via West Fork Foss Lakes Trail. Beautiful! Watch out for the near infinite potholes on the forest road! Big Heart Lake via West Fork Foss Lakes Trail. This trail begins at the very end of NF-68 at a decent sized parking area with registration forms, a restroom, and information kiosk. There are a few good campsites here at the Northern edge of the lake, and they are close to the water’s edge. If you hike this during the heat of summer, after the long, exposed switchbacks, you might need a re-fill here. Kid friendly trail. 2. Easy, then a little bit of moderate. It is a 14.6-mile (23.5 km) round-trip hike from the trailhead, just off of the Foss River Road. Just bring a gallon of spray. About a quarter mile brings you to the West Fork itself. Cross a log to the other side, and look CLOSELY for rock cairns. West Fork Foss River is a popular trail that leads to a chain of 5 dazzling alpine lakes with further possibilities beyond in the Alpine Lakes Wilderness. I'd go back again! A very very well maintained trail. The trail has been washed out by the river. This was such a beautiful hike and I highly recommend. This is not a section of trail that you want to do in the midday sun, so if you can, avoid that…If you go during the heat of the day, there is a small stream at the top of the switchbacks, that will be a good source of water, and a place to cool down, as it’s in the shade. There are several campsites here, along the banks of the lake, and further back into the woods. My 11 year old and I did it no problem. Not too crowded, great for kids... enough things along the way like a huge tree, a bridge, waterfall views, etc to keep them entertained. Continue on Road #68 for approximately 4.7 miles. The falls are absolutely spectacular, the early season snow melt has them at full awesome power. It starts at the trailhead, where cars were parked down the road and even into the sweet trailhead campsite that I had mentioned before. The trail is still good here, and in .5 miles, you’ll find yourself at the edge of Little Heart Lake. We loved this hike. Bring a hat because for a lot of the hike your arms and face are exposed in the sun while you hike thru gorgeous wildflowers. beautiful trail to an awesome High Alpine lake. No snow on trail before Little Heart. Eventually, you break out into the open, and you can see a huge waterfall cascading down barren rock. Choose from Trout Lake (1.6 miles each way with 500 feet of elevation gain), Copper Lake (4.2 miles each way with 2400 feet of elevation gain), or Big Heart Lake at 7.3 miles each way, with 3300 feet elevation gain). It was such a hot day and we were tired when we got there and then had to scramble to find a spot. Great lake, and nice camp spots. West Fork Foss River and Lakes Day hike from W Foss trail head to to saddle south of Pt 5359, between Lakes Big Heart and Angeline. Amazing trees, bridge, varying terrain. The lakes were definitely very cold but bearable and felt great to ice sore feet. Trout Lake via West Fork Foss Lakes Trail . At about 0.5 mile, hikers cross a bridge over the canyon that was carved by the flood of 2006. You could see/hear Malachite Falls in the distance, and this was also where the path started getting difficult. The lake walk itself rises and falls with the terrain, and there are several great viewpoints and a few campsites at the Northern end of the lake. There was people already hanging out in the day use area, so we just wandered around. Drop dead gorgeous from trailhead to Big Heart. At roughly a half-mile cross a sturdy bridge and continue climbing through deepening forest for another mile to Trout Lake. Hiked up to Copper lake for our first overnight trip of the year. I hope this review makes this beautiful long day hike seem more accessible to less experienced hikers and remind them to give way and follow other rules of thumb https://bearfoottheory.com/trail-etiquette-hiking-rules/. Everyone we saw wore masks! We headed back toward Little Heart and found some great campsites there. Trail was in great shape! (Trout Lake). If you want to experience some of the ruggedness and wild beauty that exists in the Alpine Lakes Wilderness area, this is a great hike that will cover all those bases. It was easy, then a few moderate parts. I didn't bring a tent or bivy and was kicking myself. Big Heart Lakeis the most remote and highest-elevation on-trail lake in the West Fork Foss Riversystem. West Fork Foss Lakes Trail 1064. The trail begins fairly flat and well made. Don’t expect to camp right near the lake. We also noticed the etiquette on giving way to uphill hikers was followed by everyone which was a welcome change after being on more crowded and accessible trails lately where it’s been a bit of a free for all. My phone also died so we were only able to record our hike in! We will be hiking about 2 - 2.5 miles down the trail to get beyond Trout Lake. Air-filled with moisture provides the nectar of life here, allowing old-growth cedars to flourish. The trail is good to Big Heart Lake, the saddle to Angeline Lake and Chetwoot Lake is a bit sketchy. It's doable with ice axe, skill and maybe a buddy. Apparently, they don’t wear eye masks to bed and, instead, rise with the sun! It was rocky but nothing you couldn't just step over. After Trout Lake, difficulty increases. I was afraid of running out of daylight, so I pressed on. I debated saying this hike was terrible, but only because I want it all to myself. Easy hike to the lake. Copper Lake isn't much farther, and upon arrival I was greeted with lots and lots of overnight hikers. For this week’s edition of Trailblazers, I […] Unfortunately he dove into a burrow before I could get my camera. Gorgeous payoff at the end. The single-lane dirt road was easily passable with some potholes (as of Oct 2018). There were a few other campers around the lake, but it was very peaceful. Big Heart Lake via West Fork Foss Lakes Trail is a 13.4 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Skykomish, Washington that features a lake and is rated as difficult. We got lucky! after that, there was a couple stream crossings but i was able to jump from rock to rock/log to get across. Most of the snow is alongside the trail, but most patches on the trail are very easy to cross. It doesn’t have good access points and many times we tried little trails to get down only to end up on a rocky, impassable cliff. If you get to a point that your group doesn’t feel comfortable with, you’ve still got to see some beautiful views and flowers so there’s no shame in turning around. There is, from here, another hikers trail that heads off towards Angeline Lake, that lies just over the ridgeline, that does not show up on some maps. From the trailhead, the first part of the trail seems to be walking up an old stream bed, very rocky and loose. The West Fork Foss trail leads to some of the most impressive lakes in the Alpine Lakes Wilderness including Malachite, Copper, Big and Little Heart, Angeline, Chetwoot, Azurite and Azure. West Fork Foss River and Lakes. The hike is beautiful, and can be done in one day - all the way to Big Heart and back took about 8 hours. Best time would be mid-week and in the fall. From Highway 2 (Stevens Pass Highway), turn south on Foss River Road, 1.9 miles east of Skykomish. Even if you're just day hiking, I highly recommend lots of water and sturdy and supportive shoes. Starts off really easy to get your legs warmed up and then starts climbing after passing Trout Lake. July 18, 2020 Continue on #68 for approximately 6 miles. Easy hike 1.7 miles, each way, 500’ elevation gain . This puts the prior stump graveyard into context and makes one wonder just how resplendent this valley once was. Posted by 16 days ago. The trail needs restoration where the roots of an up-ended tree left a gaping whole in the trail. Skykomish District Trip Report. West Fork Foss River is a popular trail that leads to a chain of 5 dazzling alpine lakes with further possibilities beyond in the Alpine Lakes Wilderness. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash. It was a bit like a public beach with campers staking out territory by the water. The single-lane dirt road was easily passable with some potholes (as of Oct 2018). I went 4th of July weekend and I'm sure you could guess, it was pretty busy but I was able to get a good place to sleep. Great hike - Snow however became a problem and decided to bail between little heart lake and big heart lake. Flat ground and clear paths along side a lovely creek provide scenery, as do the steep granite cliffs on either side. West Fork Foss Lakes Trail is a 1,272 m blue singletrack trail located near Alpine Lakes Wilderness Washington. This is a easy one way trail in Alpine Lakes Wilderness. 10 comments. Length 3.0 miElevation gain 534 ftRoute type Out & back The single-lane dirt road was easily passable with some potholes (as of Oct 2018). Once you reach the river crossing, you will notice that you have to follow rock cairns, as the river washed out this part of trail. It is a gorgeous hike, which starts with an easy walk along the river up to Trout Lake (a great camp location for families). www.fs.fed.us/r6/mbs. You’ll gain 1800 feet of elevation in 1.5 miles. Malachite and Copper Lakes, West Fork Foss River, Skykomish - July 17 LEADER Incident report. My next trip up will be to Lake Malachite. I guess this is the norm for summer hiking in Seattle. Next time we're going to bring a little floating pattle boat so we can fish. The trail along the lake goes .7 miles over and around some jumbled boulders before you start your uphill once again at the southern end of Copper Lake. The trail is a little more rugged and unkempt, but I wouldn’t say you have to route find, really. Trip Report By. Mosquitos were terrible. We made it to the bottom of the saddle then decided to go back to Big Heart, saw some people heading on to Chetwoot with ice axes and we did cross one snow bridge midway down the saddle on the Northern side. After the junction to Copper Lake, we soon began to see snow along the trail. This trail goes by Trout Lake. You can get either pass at the US Ranger Station located here: 74920 Stevens Pass Hwy Skykomish, WA 98288. Trout Lake via West Fork Foss Lakes Trail is a 3 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Skykomish, Washington that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. Description This trail begins at the very end of NF-68 at a decent sized parking area with registration forms, a restroom, and information kiosk. The West Fork of the Foss River offers day-hikers and backpackers a range of options. The West Fork Foss valley is outstanding in its abundance of fine scenery and alpine lakes. Although Copper lake looked more interesting for camping. Bing Maps has a collection of great trails with directions to trail heads as well as photos. We noticed there were very few hikers - even going up to little heart lake on what was a pretty nice day (it rained a bit in the morning but the afternoon was sunny). There are many lakes, do it is a good idea to know which Lake you're looking for. This is a difficult one way trail in Alpine Lakes Wilderness. Got there Friday night and found a sweet spot by the trailhead to car-camp. Discover trails like West Fork Foss River and Lakes Washington, find information like trail length, elevation, difficulty, activities, and nearby businesses. After you’ve topped out at 4935ft, you’ll drop back down to the edge of Big Heart Lake, at 4162 ft elevation. From this point on, along the trail, you are entertained by the huge waterfall coming out of Copper Lake. a beginner, a dog and an expert hiker all had a ton of fun :) trail is kinda hard to find right before the glassy lake so be diligent! Based on other reviews i thought we'd be bouldering up and was preparing myself for that (ptsd from hiking up Aasgard's pass probably). link Copy Link. The river crossing to the lake was very easy and there were several clear and dry campgrounds. Even though Big Heart was my goal, I decided to camp by Little Heart and enjoy the solitude. After Trout lake, there were occasional muddy patches all the way up, but nothing thick or difficult. just long enough to feel like "where the heck is this lake." Flat ground and clear paths along side a lovely creek provide scenery, as do the steep granite cliffs on either side. :) My favorite hike in WA so far, and we didn't even make it to Big Heart Lake (or Copper, for that matter) so I can only review the bottom 1/2 of the trail. Angeline is a short distance away, however from what I understand it's a hard and exposed scramble over rock, so I don't recommend going into it when you're already drained. Central Cascades. The trail begins again about another 50 feet or so, on your right. In covid times, passing in predictable ways by following established hiking etiquette is more important than ever. Went on a Sunday and there were only a few groups. We finished with a swim back down at trout lake and our only regret was not bringing a small towel. Beautiful sights all around. I had the same experience as Simon from a few weeks back. On the other side of Stevens Pass, just about an hour from Leavenworth, sits the West Fork Foss Lakes Trail. Water was cold. Copper Lake is beautiful and large. Best time would be mid-week and in the fall. Several 200 feet (61 m) long paths lead upstream to the base of the falls. Also beautiful, and a little more serene with less activity along the trail. Log in or sign up to leave a … We ended up going about a mile past the lake and made it a ten mile day. This was a fun hike close to the river with a great view of the lake. ... Go Hiking Trip Reports West Fork Foss River and Lakes. It would be awesome if they added more beach area. Some amazingly large trees along the way (see picture). But I was afraid of running out of Copper Lake trail is a difficult.... Alpine firs for a few weeks back each way, 500 ’ elevation gain people who were really during... Etiquette is more important than ever to complete the trek hot days restrooms ( closed,. Forest for another mile to Trout Lake. outdoor solitude Foss valley is outstanding in its of... 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