Its been a while since my last backpacking trip and I felt the need to get out and hike! I chose Waptus Lake, knowing the trail was long and led to incredible scenery with many options for exploring around the lake. I’ve been there once before and have wanted to return ever since then. The trip did not disappoint!
It was 85 degrees in Cle Elum, where I stopped to pick up some agave juice. Of course it was the hottest part of the day to start hiking. At least the bugs were gone. In fact, I didn’t see more than 5 mosquitoes! Not bad for a place notorious for horrible bugs. I stopped a few times along the river on the hike in and took about 4 hours to reach Waptus Lake at a mellow pace. Unfortunately I developed a blister on my heel 2 miles into the hike.
The river crossing was easy, only knee deep and not too cold. I reached the lake and saw only one other group camped at Quick Creek Camp. Sweet. I poured some agave juice and crystal light in my cup and sat in the sun for the rest of the day:)
In the morning, I realized I drank too much agave juice and had to go back to bed for a few hours. By 9am, I was ready to hike more. I headed to Spade Lake, 2200 feet and 4.4 miles beyond Waptus Lake. It was steep, hot and almost too much for me. I made it just short of the lake and had to turn around due to a time limit. I sat in the sun staring at Mt. Adams, Mt. Rainier, Summit Chief, Bears Breast and other good looking mountains before heading back down. I’ll be back there for sure and I’ll have an extra day to explore that awesome area.
Total trip was about 27 miles, 3500 vertical feet and my blister hurt like hell. The scenery and solitude outweighed any pain though and I LOVE Waptus Lake!!!! Enjoy the photos and get out and walk! EE