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Mirror Lake via the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT)

Snoqualmie Region

Location

Snoqualmie Region -- Snoqualmie Pass
View map below

Length

7.0 miles, roundtrip

Elevation

Gain: 1180 ft.
Highest Point: 4195 ft.

Rating

3.83 out of 5

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WTA worked here: 2013
 

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

None
 
 

This short dayhike on the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) is a nice alternate route to quiet Mirror Lake, or just a lovely little forest ramble on a quiet section of the well-maintained trail. You could consider it as a first-time backpacking destination, too, since the trail is never particularly steep here.

After parking along FR-9070, find the intersection with the Pacific Crest Trail at 3800 feet of elevation and head south. Salmonberry and blueberry bushes line your route. After it leaves the saddle, the Pacific Crest Trail gently gains elevation, then dips to cross the north fork of Cold Creek two tenths of a mile from the trailhead. Enter an alpine forest populated by noble fir, western hemlock, and mountain hemlock. The trail meanders through the forest southward past beargrass, arnica, bluebells, western columbine, foamflower, fireweed, cow parsnip, and milkweed that blossom in the summer. Bumblebees, chipmunks, hummingbirds, and pikas can be seen or heard along this section of the trail. Flies and mosquitoes can be bothersome in the summer months.

After passing under Silver and Tinkham Peaks, the PCT continues south, curving around a basin and through forest, before reaching quiet Mirror Lake 3.5 miles from the trailhead. Mirror Lake is beautiful, with good campsites, though it can fill quickly due to its proximity to the trail. If it's crowded, head a further 0.5 miles taking a left at a junction to Cottonwood Lake. 

 

Mirror Lake via the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT)

Map & Directions

Trailhead
Co-ordinates: 47.3731, -121.4468 Open map in new window

Trailhead

Snoqualmie Region -- Snoqualmie Pass

Pacific Crest Trail (#2000)

Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest, Snoqualmie Ranger District

See weather forecast

Guidebooks & Maps

Green Trails Snoqualmie Pass No 207

Getting There

From Seattle, drive east on I-90 and take exit 54 Hyak/Gold Cr. Turn right at the bottom of the exit ramp, and reset your odometer. Continue straight, crossing SR 906. The road turns into Hyak Dr NE. Continue on Hyak Dr NE. The pavement ends in 0.6 miles, and the road becomes FR-9070. Continue on FR-9070 for 4.7 miles, then arrive at the intersection with the Pacific Crest Trail (#2000), 5.4 miles after you reset your odometer. FR-9070 can accommodate 10-12 cars parking on the side of the road. There is no privy available. Take the Pacific Crest Trail #2000 South towards Stampede Pass (not north towards Snoqualmie Pass).

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

None
 

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Mirror Lake via the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT)

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