Peak-a-boo Lake Recon Mission


Earlier this year my cousin Tom and I attempted a Snowshoe Trip to Peak-a-boo Lake in Darrington, Wa. Unfortunately, the snow just got too deep and we had to turn back. Nothing bothers me more than a failed mission, so this last weekend I drug my husband and dog with me to finally finish what I had started.

There was a washout a few years back that lengthened the trail by 4 miles roundtrip. Making this once popular hike not so well traveled anymore. Near the washout there is parking for 2-3 cars and to get on the trail you have to cross a stream and hug a very narrow, crumbling ridge until you reach the old gravel road.

The first mile gradually inclines as you pass several seasonal waterfalls on your left. Eventually the road switchbacks and you will have an additional mile of road walking, but at a steeper grade. At 2 miles you will finally reach the original trailhead where you will switchback uphill for several more miles to a meadow with sweeping views and pretty little tarns. From there you drop down to the lake.

The trail has not been maintained so we had to deal with several blow downs. Climbing over and under logs periodically. We cleared what we could by hand to help out other hikers to come. At about 4,000 feet in elevation we hit snow which is where having a gps was essential to make sure we were still on the right route.


Once we hit the meadow at 4300 feet in elevation the snow was 4-6 feet deep. We had to make careful decisions on navigating across the field to avoid post-holing and unknowingly traveling over snow covered tarns. Once on the other side of the meadow were able to find the trail again that brought us down to the beautiful Peak-a-boo Lake.

Snow was still covering half of this gem and the water was crystal clear and very deep. We stayed for lunch and enjoyed the view before ascending back up to the meadow and navigating to the famous viewpoint on the opposite end. From there you can see prominently White Chuck Mountain and Mount Pugh. It was a bit cloudy this day, but I did get some decent shots.

Overall, this hike was 9.6 miles roundtrip and a total elevation gain of 3000 whopping feet. It was definitely a calf burner, but so worth the remote feeling you get while being on an abandoned trail. I would only recommend this one to experienced hikers and as always suggest you use extreme caution while venturing out into the wild parts of our great PNW.


See WTA- Peak-a-Boo Lake

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