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Eightmile Lake + Lake Caroline

The Enchantments

Alpine Lakes Wilderness, Washington

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Eightmile Lake + Lake Caroline

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  • Packing a float tube to fully enjoy Eightmile Lake.- Eightmile Lake + Lake Caroline
  • Alpine Lakes Wilderness boundary.- Eightmile Lake + Lake Caroline
  • Eight Mile Creek.- Eightmile Lake + Lake Caroline
  • A view of Eightmile Lake from camp.- Eightmile Lake + Lake Caroline
  • Eightmile Lake from the trail to Lake Caroline.- Eightmile Lake + Lake Caroline
  • Fly agaric, also known as fly amanita (Amanita muscaria).- Eightmile Lake + Lake Caroline
  • The Stuart Range from Eightmile Lake.- Eightmile Lake + Lake Caroline
  • Fly agaric, also known as fly amanita (Amanita muscaria).- Eightmile Lake + Lake Caroline
  • Lake Caroline.- Eightmile Lake + Lake Caroline
  • View of Mount Stuart (9,416') and the Stuart Range from the trail to Lake Caroline.- Eightmile Lake + Lake Caroline
  • Fireweed (Chamerion angustifolium) thrives in disturbed areas such as recent burns.- Eightmile Lake + Lake Caroline
  • Bear's head (Hericium abietis).- Eightmile Lake + Lake Caroline
  • - Eightmile Lake + Lake Caroline
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Beautiful views. Fishing for cutthroat trout and makinaw (lake trout). Swimming.
Cons: 
Congestion. Permits are issued by lottery. No campfires.
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Region:
Alpine Lakes Wilderness, WA
Congestion: 
High
Pets allowed: 
No
Net Elevation Gain: 
3,300.00 ft (1,005.84 m)
Parking Pass: 
NW Forest Pass
Preferable Season(s):
Spring, Summer, Fall
Suitable for:
Hiking, Horseback
Total Distance: 
0.00 mi (0.00 km)
Trail type: 
There-and-back
Trailhead Elevation: 
3,200.00 ft (975.36 m)
Current Local Weather:
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Hike Description

Hike Description

Contributor

The Enchantments are a very popular place for backpacking, and after your first trip to this incredible area, you will understand why. A trip to Eightmile Lake is one of the easiest ways to experience this protected section of the Alpine Lakes Wilderness. Part of this area was consumed by fire in the summer of 2012, but don't let that deter you from exploring this area. This 4-mile hike through the burn provides a wonderful opportunity to witness nature's amazing ability to repair itself, and you'll see many wildflowers and saplings growing right out of the charred remains of the forest.

The east-west orientation of Eightmile Lake makes for warm water along the shallow edges, as the sun has many hours to heat the basalt-lined shores (this is great for swimming, but the water won't chill your drinks). A hike to the west end of the lake will put you in a microclimate where it is cool even on a hot day. Here you will find many varieties of berries and mushrooms (including the prized bear's head, if you are lucky).  

A hike to Lake Caroline is another good option either from the trailhead or from Eightmile Lake. This hike is much more difficult because of the 2,000-foot climb from Little Eightmile Lake, but the climb brings rich rewards: breathtaking views of Mount Stuart and the Stuart Range. At roughly 4.5 miles from the Eightmile Lake campsites, this is a steep day trip that is easily finished in a day. 

Note: A permit is necessary if you will be staying overnight in peak season, June 15 through October 15.

Updates, Tips + Comments

Updates, Tips + Comments

Field Guide + Trail Map

Field Guide + Trail Map

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Location + Directions

Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(30 within a 30 mile radius)

Nearby Adventures

(90 within a 30 mile radius)

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