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    Surprise and Glacier Lakes via Surprise Creek Trail

    This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
    This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
    This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
    16.1 km
    This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
    903 m
    User Ratings
    These ratings are completed by users who have completed this trail and not subject to reviews by 10Adventures.
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    Directions to Trailhead

    Surprise Lake and Glacier Lakes are reached on Surprise Creek Trail on this hard hike. At 16.1km and with 903 m of elevation gain, this hike is a solid day’s effort. You’ll enjoy the beauty of two alpine lakes and the mountains that surround them on this trail. You can also use this hike to continue on up Thunder Mountain or Surprise Mountain.

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    Route Description for Surprise and Glacier Lakes via Surprise Creek Trail

    The hike to Surprise Lake and Glacier Lake on Surprise Creek Trail is a beautiful trek, and it’ll leave you feeling satisfied with a full day’s effort. You can also use this trail to ascend either Thunder or Surprise mountains.

    Begin from the end of the road near Scenic Creek, crossing the creek and keeping left at an intersection with a spur trail. You’ll follow alongside Surprise Creek on a trail that is mostly level, to begin with.

    You’ll cross the creek just before it forks, then cross back over another arm to hike with the water now on your right. The trail soon begins to ascend, with switchbacking turns leading you up to Surprise Lake. There can sometimes be downed trees here from avalanche damage, so take your time crossing them if they’re present.

    There is a fork on the lakeshore with a short trail that leads you more directly along the shore, but this trail doesn’t reconnect to the main trail, so you’ll have to backtrack if you take it.

    Continue onto the PCT, keeping right at the next intersection and then left to the lakeshore of Glacier Lake. This is where the trail ends, so you can either retrace your steps or continue exploring.

    Getting to the Surprise and Glacier Lakes via Surprise Creek Trail Trailhead

    The trailhead for the hike to Surprise and Glacier Lakes on Surprise Creek Trail is off Highway 2 on an access road just west of Old Cascade Highway.

    Route Information

    • Backcountry Campground


    • When to do


    • Pets allowed

      Yes - On Leash

    • Family friendly


    • Route Signage


    • Crowd Levels


    • Route Type

      Out and back

    Surprise and Glacier Lakes via Surprise Creek Trail Elevation Graph

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    Surprise and Glacier Lakes via Surprise Creek Trail Reviews

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