Ross, Diablo & Gorge Lakes

Why go to Europe for the Alps when we have the beautiful North Cascades three hours from Seattle? Enjoy having fun, relaxing, camping, sea kayaking, swimming, hiking, and just being lazy on a sunny dock. Explore creeks, canyons, rapids, waterfalls, and all kinds of birds and critters in a different kind of paddling paradise.

on the water

diablo lake

Diablo Lake is a splendid trip in a kayak with tantalizing jade-green waters, a tempestuous but enchanting place surrounded by old forests, intriguing rock chasms, high peaks and glacier ice. The five miles from Colonial Creek to Diablo Dam inundates a deep gorge on the Skagit River once known as Box Canyon. Diablo Lake receives the flow of many glaciers, including Boston Glacier high on the flanks of 8,845-foot Mount Forbidden. That gorgeous green is caused by tiny rock particles eroded by the ice. Paddle from Colonial Creek to Diablo Dam and back or explore more of the lake before returning.

  • Difficulty: Sea Kayak III
  • Length: 50.0 nm
  • Land Manager: North Cascades National Park
  • Parking Permit Required: None
  • Recommended Party Size: 12
  • Maximum Party Size: 12
  • Maximum Route/Place Capacity: 12
  • Green Trails North Cascades Ross Lake No. 16SX
  • Green Trails Diablo Dam No. 48
  • Green Trails Ross Lake No. 16
  • Trails Illustrated North Cascades National Park
Trip Reports

This is a list of titles that represent the variations of trips you can take at this route/place. This includes side trips, extensions and peak combinations. Not seeing a title that fits your trip? Log in and send us updates, images, or resources.

  • Diablo Lake
  • Ross Lake
  • Gorge Lake
  • Diablo & Ross Lakes
  • Diablo & Gorge Lakes

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