SEA: Hiking or Backpacking to Mirror Lake

Head to Mirror Lake for a weekend of hiking and backpacking.

We’re teaming up with GAIA GPS to create new itineraries for you to enjoy every month! There also hooking us up with one month for free – which you can redeem using this link:  (And if you like it head to to get 25% off an annual GAIA GPS subscription).

Thanks to Mappy Hour member Christie for sharing one of her favorite local hikes with us for Seattle’s Map of the Month.

This hike to Mirror Lake is a fairly easy trail for all skill levels and, of course, includes a gorgeous lake! If you’re able to go in July and August you’ll be rewarded with water features and flowers (though the terrain is diverse and beautiful year round). Plus, since the hike is along the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) you may just run into a thru-hiker during your adventure!

Mirror Lake Hiking

Mirror Lake Day Hike

For a day hike, Christie recommends a 7.3 mile (mostly) out and back hike that loops around the lake:

Mirror Lake Backpacking Trip

If you have more time to spend outdoors, extend your trip with an overnight. Multiple camping sites are scattered around Mirror Lake and include fire pits. Or you can extend your hike to nearby Cottonwood Lake which also has a nice campground.

Views from Mirror Lake hike

Pro tips:

  • Bring a float or (or use your sleeping pad) to lounge in the water
  • In late summer it can get hot and buggy so bring sunscreen and bug spray.
  • Try the side routes to Silver Peak and Tinkham peak if you want an extra challenge

Driving Directions to Mirror Lake:

Follow the directions from the WTA. Note that these forest roads are best with a car with AWD. Park near the Mount Catherine trailhead

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