One of the best ways to access the heart of Chuckanut Mountain is via the North Lost Lake Trail. You can enjoy hikes of varying lengths from several different trailheads, but because the web of trails here is complex, a map of the area is a must. It makes navigating easier, allowing you to create loops with other trails and ensuring you can find your way back. Because of its large parking lot, start at the North Chuckanut Mountain Trailhead for this hike, where you’ll connect with the Interurban Trail, then the Hemlock and North Lost Lake Trails.
From the trailhead, climb moderately, looking out for a sign on your right for North Lost Lake Trail. Most of the route is an old forest road transforming into a trail, so the grade is never terribly steep. The sounds of the road below fade away as you round the west side of the mountains. Look for a riot of ferns and conifer trees along the way, until the trail levels off into a relatively flat section just before reaching the quiet lake.
Hiking 9 miles can seem daunting but the views are well worth it, and you may enjoy some solitude, as many day hikers do not come this far.
At the lake, peruse your map and consider alternate adventures at Larrabee State Park. One option: follow the trail beyond the lake, heading south to where it links up with Lost Lake Trail 3, South Lost Lake and the WTA-built Rock Trail, leading to the top of Cleator Road. Or explore the Fragrance Lake trailhead, accessed from a parking area off Chuckanut Drive. Once you’ve finished hike planning, head back the way you came.
WTA Pro Tip: Park at either end of Larrabee State Park to make this a thru-hike, coming down the hillside to Clayton Beach. Work with a friend to do a key swap or get dropped off at one end and hike to your car at the other.