Lake Twentytwo

Ready for a short and relatively easy hike on Sunday? Well, sleep in a bit and come along for a moderate paced hike up to Lake 22.

After the hike we will be stopping for Post-Func...probably in Granite Falls or Lake Stevens....If you are not wanting to do that, you need to carpool with a driver who isn't stopping, or just drive yourself.

If you are not driving, then expect to make a contribution to the driver.


Roundtrip 5.4 miles Elevation Gain 1350 feet 1350 ft Highest Point 2400 feet 2400 ft
Features - Rivers, Lakes, Waterfalls, Old growth
User info Northwest Forest Pass required
Guidebooks & Maps
Day Hiking: North Cascades (Romano - Mountaineers Books)
Green Trails Granite Falls No. 109
Silverton No. 110


Pertinent Details......

From - Perched in a spectacular basin at the base of Mount Pilchuck's sheer northern face, sparkling Lake Twentytwo is a stunning sight. But there's more to this popular hike than the picturesque lake and its backdrop of waterfalls and avalanche chutes. For much of the way the well-constructed trail follows cascading Twentytwo Creek through an exemplary ancient forest of gargantuan cedars. An excellent hike to acquaint children and neophytes with the natural world-just don't expect to be alone on this favorite of many a Puget Sound hiker.

As delightful a destination as Lake Twentytwo may be, the real treat on this hike is the forest. Nearly 800 acres of pristine forest surrounding the lake and its outlet were set aside in 1947 as a Research Natural Area (RNA) to study the effects on water, wildlife, and timber of an area left in its virgin state compared to a similar area that has been intensively managed. Upon initial observation entering this primeval patch it doesn't take a forester, scientist, or naturalist to tell you that nature does a pretty darn good job of taking care of things when people aren't messing with it!

The surroundings are lush. Water appears to seep and bubble from the ground everywhere. Moss carpets boulders and rotting logs. Maidenhair, deer, and lady ferns form showy bouquets beneath the behemoth trees. Although western hemlock and silver fir are the predominant species, it's the western red cedars that will garner most of your attention. Colonnades of the giants, some with trunks measuring almost 12 feet in diameter, hold up the sky.

The trail starts by gently traversing a side hill paralleling the road and the South Fork Stilly. In 0.5 mile cross Twentytwo Creek on a little bridge and pause to admire cascades both up- and downstream. The trail then begins to climb, but never too harshly. Volunteers and Forest Service employees have worked hard over the years to crib much of this well-trampled trail, ensuring tread that will stand the impact of thou-sands of boots.

At 2 miles enter a talus slope punctuated with vine and big-leaf maples. Exceptionally pretty in the fall, the views of Green Mountain and the South Fork Stilly valley can still be enjoyed anytime. Upon reentering the cool cloak of ancient conifers, the climbing commences and you can glimpse a thundering waterfall through the thick timber.

Next, enjoy 0.25 mile of level walking following along Twentytwo Creek as you enter the cirque housing Lake Twentytwo. Break out of the trees and behold the lake set beneath an impressive vertical wall of rock. Waterfalls crash off of the sheer cliffs. In early season, so do avalanches-stay well away. By midsummer it's safe to circumnavigate the lake on a delightful 1.2-mile trail.

The lake, which is over 50 feet deep, supports a fair amount of fish. But the only thing you may be intent on catching here is the sun's rays shimmering off of the twinkling waters and a whole lot of gorgeous scenery.

Driving Directions:

From Granite Falls follow the Mountain Loop Highway east for 11 miles to the Verlot Public Service Center. Proceed 2 more miles to the trailhead, on your right (elev. 1050 ft). Privy available.

Additional Driving directions:

Park-n-Ride 1-405 & NE 160th St, bothell,wa to Verlot, WA Directions to Lake 22 Trailhead 47.0 mi - about 1 hour 6 mins Trailhead is 2 miles past Verlot Ranger Station, on right side of road. Start - Park-n-Ride I-405 & NE 160th St, Bothell

1. Head west on NE 160th St toward 119th Ave NE Go .2 miles

2. Turn right to merge onto I-405 N toward Everett Go 7.2 miles

3. Take the Interstate 5 N exit toward Vancouver BC Go .5 miles

4. Merge onto I-5 N Go 10.9 miles

5. Take exit 194 to merge onto US-2 E toward Snohomish/Wenatchee Go 2.3 miles

6. Exit on the left onto WA-204 E/State 204 E toward Lake Stevens Go 2.6 miles

7. Turn left onto WA-9 N/State Route 9 N (signs for Granite Falls) Go 1.7 miles

8. Turn right onto WA-92 E/Granite Falls Hwy Go 7.2 miles

9. At the traffic circle, continue straight onto WA-92 E/96th St NE (continuue to follow WA-92 E) Go 1.2 miles

10. Turn left onto N Alder Ave Go .3 miles

11. Continue onto Mountain Loop Hwy Go 10.7 miles

12. Continue past Verlot Ranger Station to Trail Head on right Go 2.0 miles







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  • Ric B.
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