Forum Index > Trip Reports > Eagle-Boiling-Crater Lakes/Chelan Sawtooths - Aug. 3
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Sadie's Driver
Sadie's Driver



Joined: 24 Apr 2006
Posts: 1737 | TRs
Location: Welcome Pass
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Sadie's Driver
PostFri Aug 09, 2019 3:58 pm 
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Not a lot of reports on this site specifically about Eagle Lakes (we only stayed at Upper Eagle), probably because it is a heavily used/multi-use trail - bikes, motorbikes, horses/pack animals and hikers.
Here we go
Here we go
Huge parking lot at the trailhead (for multi-users)
Huge parking lot at the trailhead (for multi-users)

There is a huge parking area at the trailhead - so, it gets a lot of visitors - probably with destinations beyond the lakes and into the Sawtooths. For us, it was going to be a scorching hot day - a cloudless morning heading north from Wenatchee to the Chelan Sawtooths. Clouds would form to the south later in the day, but nothing cirrus (har-har)! Barry, Cooper and I headed up Gold Creek to the Eagle Lake Trailhead. There is good news and bad news about this trail. The good news is that the trail is in great shape - no blow downs, completely clear, The (somewhat) bad news is that because it is a multi-use trail, it makes for pretty dusty going during the summer. But, I can't complain too much, because the motor bikers did all of the trail clearing - and the 10 motor bikers that passed us, were courteous. The good news is, they can't take their motorbikes on the side trails to the lakes, which is nice.

A dusty trail
A dusty trail
Crossing Crater Creek
Crossing Crater Creek
Dusty path
Dusty path
Motorbike parking
Motorbike parking
"Temporary" Parking for motorbikes near Eagle Lake spur trail
"Temporary" Parking for motorbikes near Eagle Lake spur trail

We had beautiful weather. Hiked the almost six miles/2400' into Upper Eagle Lake - only saw one hiker coming out and no one at the lake. I swear on our way in I saw a Wolverine - too quick for a picture . . . In fact, it was quite the wildlife and wildflower show. Saw several marmots and one (only one!) little brown bunny - deer were elusive. Cooper was happy to be amused by (plenty of) squirrels!

Heading in
Heading in
Lower Eagle Lake
Lower Eagle Lake
Benches above Lower Eagle Lake
Benches above Lower Eagle Lake
A memorial for a couple of dogs
A memorial for a couple of dogs
Heading into Eagle Lake
Heading into Eagle Lake
Eagle Lake
Eagle Lake

Set up camp and then headed about 1 1/2 miles/700' to Horsehead Pass, where we dropped down 600'+ and another mile to Boiling Lake and saw our route up Cheops Peak (another time).

On our way to Horsehead Pass
On our way to Horsehead Pass
Lower Eagle Lake
Lower Eagle Lake
Lots of flowers above 6000'
Lots of flowers above 6000'
Cheops in the distance
Cheops in the distance
Looking east from Horsehead Pass - Lower Eagle Lake barely visible
Looking east from Horsehead Pass - Lower Eagle Lake barely visible
Boiling Lake
Boiling Lake
Boiling Lake
Boiling Lake

Headed back up Horsehead (after the seven motorbikers passed by) and back to Upper Eagle. Bugs were annoying - mainly mosquitoes - but I brought these "bug sticks" that you light on fire and then they smolder, emitting a light smoke that actually keeps the bugs away! We had a most pleasant dinner. Another couple with a dog camped farther down-lake and we didn't even see them until the next morning. In just a few short months, this area will be ablaze in Larch Gold.

Got up relatively early Sunday morning to another cloudless day and to catch the sun hitting the lake.
Eagle Lake Sunday morning
Eagle Lake Sunday morning
Eagle Lake reflections
Eagle Lake reflections

We were on the trail before 7:30 and decided that since we were so early, we would take a side trip up to Crater Lake - about a 3 1/2 mile/2000' romp off of the main trail (dropped our overnight packs). Steepish in spots - but nice because it wasn't dusty. Lower Crater isn't much to write home about, but some nice views of the peaks rimming the lake. Fish were jumping like crazy, On our way down, we saw two couples coming in for day hikes. Picked up our packs and got back to the main trail for the short 1/2 mile to the car.

Thrilled to have his pack on this morning
Thrilled to have his pack on this morning
Morning flowers leaving Eagle Lake
Morning flowers leaving Eagle Lake
Smokey haze on Sunday morning
Smokey haze on Sunday morning
Crater Lake
Crater Lake
Crater Lake
Crater Lake
Fields of flowers and a lupine path
Fields of flowers and a lupine path
Meadow below Bigelow Ridge
Meadow below Bigelow Ridge

It was toasty! We were on our way before 2 p.m. Finished the overnight with about 5500' gain and about 25 miles. Probably the best part of the trip was to (almost literally) run into a big ol' ambling black bear as we drove out spur road 300 and rounded a switchback, just before it connects back to FS 4340 - he was too quick to get a photo and was unamused with our presence. Upper Eagle Lake is a worthy destination - especially once you get off the main, shared trail.

--------------
Four-paw buddy lets me tag along!
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Hutch
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PostFri Aug 09, 2019 4:21 pm 
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One of my favorite loops in the entire state. Thanks for the report.
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fourteen410
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PostFri Aug 09, 2019 4:31 pm 
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Looking forward to visiting that area during larch season since the road was closed last October. Glad to hear everything is still in good shape!
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Sky Hiker
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PostMon Aug 12, 2019 5:51 am 
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awesome place when the larch turn
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forest gnome
Forest nut...



Joined: 24 Apr 2003
Posts: 3257 | TRs
Location: north cascades!!
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Forest nut...
PostTue Aug 13, 2019 6:45 am 
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ok so have heard for years about riding bikes over there....have some orv maps...

anyone know what the rules are for parking the motorbikes ...like overnight???...meaning day hiking only for dirt bikers?...

yes I will call the ranger- just wondered if ya ran across the rules somewhere..

oh and nice report!
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Sky Hiker
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PostTue Aug 13, 2019 9:56 am 
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I ride over there quite often. Done the Eagle cr Th and out South Navarre TH a few times. I will say it is not for faint of heart and should be only done if experienced. Foggy Dew is less technical IMO. Lots of places to ride for different experience levels. Have seen no overnight restrictions.
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