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Trip Report    

Backpack - Dewey Lake

Two night camp at Dewey Lake ; in on north side of Naches Peak loop, with dayhike to Cougar Lakes; out on south side of Naches Peak

  • Road suitable for all vehicles
  • Route is partly on the PCT, partly on other well maintained and used trails- the exception being the trail 958A ( to Cougar Lakes from American Lake) which is very eroded and in need of some repair.   Some campsites and day use areas at Dewey and at American Lakes are signed as "restoration areas"- please respect that.  Overuse / careless use  is an issue around these lakes. Also note that the 2002 GT map 271 Bumping Lake shows the intersection of the trail to Swamp Lake 970  to be 6/10 mi. from the turn off to Cougar Lakes.  this is not correct.  The two intersections are very close; the USGS map shows about 600 ft apart which is more accurate to what is on the ground. 

This trip was for backpack students or other newer backpackers.  Our small party of 3 had no problem finding campsites at Dewey Lake on a Wed afternoon; however, on a weekend it might be difficult.  We had a leisurely start, enjoyed the flower display along the Naches Peak trail which is in full bloom on the north side, and set up camp with plenty of time for some relaxing and reviewing of skills (LNT, 10 Es, etc).  A breeze from the lake kept the mosquitoes mostly at bay.

Day 2 (thurs) was planned for a 7-8 mi RT hike to American Lake.  However all party members were motivated to continue on to Cougar Lakes adding about 3.5 miles and some elevation to the day.  All agreed the scenic lakes and expansive views were worth the effort.  Again, there were several camping parties at those lakes but still plenty of room during the mid week. 

Day 3 (Fri) we packed up early and hiked out via the south side of Naches Peak loop where flowers are past prime display. 

I would not recommend this trip on a weekend due to the possible crowding.  But mid week or later in the season it's a beautiful and easily accessible route.