- Physical DifficultyThis is the average user-submitted rating on the physical difficulty of this route. In general, green is beginner, blue is intermediate, black is advanced/most difficult and double-black is expert-only. It is recommended that users build up to black and double-black routes.
- Technical DifficultyThis is the average user-submitted rating on the technical difficulty of this route. In general, green is beginner, blue is intermediate, black is advanced/most difficult and double-black is expert-only. It is recommended that users build up to black and double-black routes.
The hike to Lake Ann takes you through wildflower meadows and talus slopes to Lake Ann for close-up views of Mount Shuksan’s thunderous glaciers. This is a longer hike that always leaves us tired, but also relaxed. Thankfully, the elevation isn’t too brutal.
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Route Description for Lake Ann
Lake Ann Trail begins with a drop, and ends with a climb. Start out by descending some 213 m into the valley alongside Swift Creek. The stream-strewn meadows here are immediately rewarding, resting in the shadow of Shuksan Arm.
The trail crosses Swift Creek a couple times - no more than a shallow rock-hopping affair - reaching its low point (1,189 m) and a junction at 4.0 km. Continue straight (the left branch of the fork) for Lake Ann. Then, the climb begins.
Ascend steadily, gaining nearly 305 m in the next 2.3 km. Prepare yourself for rocky terrain. The trail weaves through the woods before reaching exposed slopes for the rest of the trek. Views open up to Mount Baker and Table Mountain on a clear day, while marmots and pika pine delight hikers with their whistles and meeps.
Snow often lingers on the trail late into summer. Reach the saddle above Lake Ann at 6.4 km, then drop down into its basin below. The lake may be snow-covered or completely melted out, depending on the timing of your visit.
From the saddle, continue 0.3 km down to a nice vantage point between Lake Ann and Mount Shuksan. From here, Shuksan is near enough to make a racket: waterfalls flow down its face, and the occasional glacial groan is thunderous. Meander out to the end of the lake if you like, or simply sit and enjoy the sights and sounds. Return the way you came.
Insider Hints for Lake Ann
- Overcrowding and sanitation can be an issue for backpackers at Lake Ann. Always pack out everything you pack in.
- Bring trekking poles and be prepared for all weather conditions.
Getting to the Lake Ann Trailhead
From Glacier, drive 37.0 km east on Mount Baker Highway. The Lake Ann trailhead parking lot is on the left side of the road. A Northwest Forest Pass is required.
Lake Ann Elevation Graph
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Lake Ann Reviews
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