Fall Backpacking at Pete Lake + Farewell to the Sun
I thought our camping adventures were done for the year when we went to Lake Valhalla in August, but we had a week full of late fall sunshine in Seattle and the weather forecast predicted a sunny weekend, so Ben and I pulled all of our backpacking gear back out of the closet for a fall trip.
We hopped in the car on Saturday morning and arrived at the Pete Lake trailhead two hours and 15 minutes after leaving Seattle. Pete Lake is in the Oaknogen-Wenatchee National Forest, just past Snoqualmie Pass.
The hike to the lake was an easy four miles with barely any elevation gain. The trail already had snow on it and was muddier in places than we expected. We also had to slosh through a few low creeks but it was passable in our regular hiking boots.
^Enormous mushrooms deep in the woods.^
The views from the lake were picture-perfect.
I’m sure this trail would be crowded in the summer, but we only ran into a few other people and we had a nice campsite all to ourselves. The campsites had fire pits, but unfortunately the ground was too soggy for us to find any dry firewood so we had to skip a cozy campfire. Bonus: there was a backcountry toilet at the lake that was not smelly. In fact it was waaaay better than the toilet at the trailhead.
It got pretty chilly at night, but we were prepared with layers of warm clothes, an extra blanket for Kai, and hot chocolate 🙂
I think this trail will be difficult to get to in another week or so when it starts to get rainy/snowy but it’s a great option for summer or fall.
Check the Washington Trail Association report for all the scoop and recent trip reports from Pete Lake!