Pratt Lake Trail

#20 of 294 trails in Snoqualmie National Forest

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Pratt Lake Trail is a 11 mile out and back trail located near North Bend, Washington that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking and is accessible from June until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

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Jayce Lemmer (230)

15 Completed6 Reviews

The trails was awesome and the lake was great to swim in. I hiked with a friend and both of our gps units recorded over 14 miles on the trail to the Pratt lake campground. This is definitely one of my new favorite trails. It was a bit busy with people hiking in to camp. The trail does connect to Melakwa as well. Getting there early helps avoid the heat of the day . We started at about 7 and got back down about 4 pm after hanging out at the lake for the day.

Evan Johnson (99)

4 Completed4 Reviews

Steven Myers (258)

12 Completed4 Reviews

The great thing about this trail is that it is wide enough and in good enough shape that you can hike with your head up; which is great if you like looking at dense forest, ‘cause that’s almost all you’re going to see until you get well into the lake basin. The forest also means two other things are true about this trail: 1) you’re in shade for almost the entire trail. This has been nice as the weather has gotten warmer. And 2) With the exception of the one brief break in the trees where you can see Ollalie Lake, this trail has no intermediate “pay-off” until you reach Pratt Lake.

Why is all this relevant? Because of the one thing they don’t tell you before the first time you go out on this trail. The one thing that isn’t in the trail description or any trip report that I read. So here’s what you really need to know: This trail is relentless. You are either going up, or you are going down. There are almost no flat sections until you get to the lake itself. There are some steep sections (especially between the ridge top and the basin, which makes coming back out a nice challenge), but this trail just plain doesn’t give you a break. So, it might not have been the best choice for my first overnighter of the season.

All the being said, it was a great hike. As I mentioned, the weather was great and the trail is in good shape for the most part. There was no snow in the basin at all, though the melt has made for some significant mud and muck. The Trillium are starting to bloom in force and some of the other flowers are catching up, too. On my way in on Friday I ran into another hiker who reported seeing a black bear on the talus heading down into the basin, but by the time I got there it was nowhere to be seen. I heard coyotes (?) howling Friday night as they moved across the ridge top above my campsite, but other than that the biggest wildlife I saw was about a three foot long bull snake.

That’s not counting the dogs, of course. Over two days I saw at least twenty dogs – and only four of them were on leash! Folks, I know your puppies like to run around and explore, but this is a wilderness area and there is a reason why they are required to be leashed. For the sake of everyone who likes to enjoy these wild areas, please keep your animals under control. (Mostly so they don’t come tearing through my campsite at 8:30 at night – you know who you are!)

Jan Fair (159)

11 Completed11 Reviews

Hard day hike but a good hike

Aaron Brengle (610)

21 Completed23 Reviews

Nice trail with plenty of changing coverages. The trail that shares the beginning of Granite Mountain was your typical I-90 2000+ elevation gain lake hikes. Easy switchbacks, decent grade, good young-growth intersparsed with oak trees. The turn-off for Granite Mountain is somewhat unnoticable because it is in-line with the trail direction and does not stick out. This trail takes you to the top of the ridge of Pratt lake Basin and forces you to loose at least 300 feet to get back into the basin and lake-level. Pratt Lake is not the most scenic lake in the Alpine Lake Wilderness, but it is an easier hike when it is dry.

just becauseican (944)

32 Completed26 Reviews

Beautiful lake with a long trail to get there. Once you get past a sketchy rocky area, the final descent is easy with a narrow trail along the edge of the lake. There is a small 'day use' area which is the perfect place to have lunch and take a swim. Fairly busy trail with quite a few backpackers camped out.

Tuan Nguyen (1597)

37 Completed34 Reviews

Descended to Pratt Lake basin via the Talapus/Ollalie lake cutoff and even though this made my hike 11 miles total, it was worth it. Trails are in good condition and it was great having lunch at the lake was very nice.

Brad Robel-Forrest (63)

4 Completed2 Reviews

The entire Pratt Lake basin is really beautiful–definitely worth the switchbacks and rocky descent. The short extension of the hike out to the Lower Tuscohatchie Lake is strongly recommended (follow the signs pointing toward Melakwa Lake). There is a great set of falls out of the west end of Tuscohatchie, not to mention the amazing falls that are across the lake (near the southeastern tip of the lake, where the upper lake drains down into this one).

Gabe O'Leary (738)

22 Completed6 Reviews

Originally set out to do the Granite Mountain trail but ended up choosing this one instead once we reached the trailhead. You cross over a few streams and near the top there is a beautiful view of another lake and Mount Ranier to the south. After the peak is reached it gets rather rocky as you descend into the bowl that Pratt lake is in. The descent is quite beautiful as well. The lake was very pristine and nice to swim in once we reached it. I continued a ways down Pratt "river" to see if I could find a waterfall or anything interesting but was not successful. I would definitely recommend this hike for some looking for an alpine lake.

Carolyn Busch (1421)

24 Completed5 Reviews

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