Rachel, Rampart & Lila Lakes


Backpack - Rachel Lake

This is a scenic basic backpacker`s trip to a pretty alpine lake with good camping beneath cliffs and waterfalls. It is a generally easy approach (but steep at the end) done at a relaxed pace. The campsite is comfortable and has nice views and we will have plenty of time to discuss techniques and equipment and to make any adjustments.

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  • Easy/Moderate
  • For Beginners (Getting Started Series)
  • Mileage: 12.0 mi
  • Elevation Gain: 3,100 ft

1:30 PM at the Issaquah Transit Center on the south side, 1050 17th Ave NW, Issaquah. Or 2:30 at the trailhead. Look for a reddish Jeep Wrangler. Carpooling can be arranged, of course.

Friday we arrive at Rachel Lake. Saturday we’ll head up to the Rampart Lakes with light packs and probably Lila Lake as well. Maybe even Alta Mountain. Sunday morning we'll head out. We’ll aim to be back home mid-afternoon.

IMPORTANT NOTE -- This hike goes as follows: mostly flat/gentle gain for most of the trip and then 1,200 ft gain in one mile (affectionately referred to as "The Mile from Hell") on a boot path that is heavily rooted and often covered by water. We will obviously not be going at a moderate pace during this section, and some folks may find the steep elevation gain/descent a bigger stretch than they hoped for. But it’s only a mile, so we’ll get all packs (and people) through it.

The leader is a long-time navigation instructor, so we can also discuss and practice navigation techniques if anyone likes.


Rachel, Rampart & Lila Lakes

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