Dewey Lake, Naches Peak Loop & Pacific Crest Trail


Backpack - Dewey Lake

Enjoy one of the nicest alpine lakes in the Mt. Rainier area at the optimal time of the year with pleasant swimming opportunities at a sandy beach when the weather permits. A portion of the hike in and out is on the Naches Peak Loop Trail, noted for its alpine meadows and their wildflowers. After setting up camp on Saturday, we will have an optional 2.1 mile day hike around Dewey Lake.

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  • Moderate
  • Moderate
  • Mileage: 8.4 mi
  • Elevation Gain: 1,100 ft
  • High Point Elevation: 5,800 ft
  • Pace: 2.0 mph

Meet at 8:00 AM Saturday at the parking lot just east of Chinook Pass on the north side of SR 410, by the trailhead.  Each car must display a Northwest Forest Pass or National Park Pass.  There are four restrooms by the parking lot. 

From the trailhead, we will hike south on the PCT across the pedestrian overpass over SR 410 and on to the junction where the Naches Peak Loop trail goes right and we go left to stay on the PCT.  There is 400 feet elevation gain over 2.1 miles to that point.  Then there is 700 feet elevation loss over another 2.1 miles to reach our camp area at the south end of Big Dewey Lake, where there is a sandy beach.  The entire trail is well maintained.

After we set up camp and have our trail lunch, we will have an optional 2.1 mile day hike around Big Dewey Lake.  Then there will be time for a swim in the warm water of Dewey Lake before our camp dinner.  After dinner there will be time for conversation by the sandy beach as we watch the sunset.

Sunday morning we will have a camp breakfast and then pack up camp for the hike out.  On the drive home there will be the option for a lunch stop in either Greenwater  or Enumclaw, depending on our arrival time.

Water can be filtered from the outflow stream, which is usually near where we camp.  It is also a good place to take pictures of Mt. Rainier.  Campfires are not permitted at Dewey Lake.  The only restrooms on our hiking route are at the trailhead parking lot.  Our campsite will be in the woods, where there are options for bathroom breaks.  There are a few places on the hiking route in and out that are conducive to bathroom breaks. 


Dewey Lake, Naches Peak Loop & Pacific Crest Trail

  • Green Trails Bumping Lake No. 271

    Green Trails Mt Rainier East No. 270

    Green Trails Mount Rainier Wonderland No. 269SX
  • See full route/place details.
Required Equipment

Required Equipment

The Ten Essentials plus overnight gear which may include:

  • Tent with footprint/ground tarp
  • Stove and fuel
  • Sleeping bag
  • Sleeping pad
  • Water filter
  • Bear canister or extra stuff sack and cord designated for hanging food
  • Cooking pot/pan with plate and utensils
  • Toilet paper and shovel or blue bag to deal with waste
Trip Reports