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Trip Report    

Hester Lake 6-24-17

Slow, muddy trail with multiple water crossings - leave extra time and come with water shoes!

  • Sat, Jun 24, 2017
  • Day Hiking
  • Successful
  • Road suitable for all vehicles
  • This route shares much of its length with the trail to Myrtle Lake, and up to that junction the trail was good. After the junction, there were three water crossings where we had to wade, and then a lengthy stretch through a flat forested area with a lot of standing water and nearly constant mud.  Then the trail began to switchback steeply up, with lots of blowdown to crawl over, around and under.  The result of all of this is that it took  5 hours to reach the lake and some participants had to turn around early.  


The road up to the Dingford Creek trailhead is long and very rocky/potholed - it took us nearly an hour from the Preston P&R to get to the TH. From there, the TH was very well marked and the trail was lovely, through very large trees and past some beautiful waterfalls to the Myrtle/Hester junction.  From there, as mentioned above, trail conditions were muddy and slow with water crossings and lots of big blowdown.  Some of the group reached the lake and had a few minutes there, but the lakeshore was stacked with logs and it was hard to get very close for photos.

So be aware, leave plenty of time, carry water shoes, and don't dawdle on the good part of the trail up to the Myrtle/Hester junction.  This should be rated as challenging despite the modest elevation gain, and beginner hikers probably should be discouraged from trying this one.