Settled in the midst of the Chuckanut Mountains just 1000 feet above the Puget Sound, Fragrance Lake is an enjoyable day hike during any season. Within the extensive trail system of Larrabee State Park, the lake can be accessed from virtually every direction, and it is a great addition to a trip to its larger neighbor, Lost Lake.
The route departs from a pullout on Chuckanut Drive, climbing steeply but briefly to intersect the lengthy green corridor of the Interurban Trail. Spot a bench across the way to resume the hiker-only path into a hilly second-growth forest of cedar and Douglas fir. Close to a mile in, an optional 0.2-mile path takes you to an overlook with views that stretch into the heart of the San Juan Islands.
Back on route, continue winding through the mixed forest and a few forgiving switchbacks until you reach a junction beyond a mossy bike barrier. Head left for Fragrance Lake, and stay right if you plan on extending your trip via the South Lost Lake Trail. In another 0.1 miles, a junction marks the lake’s loop trail. Head right for the quickest distance to a lakeside rest, where you’ll find a bench on the south shore near a giant rock that slopes gently into the water. If this area is occupied, keep circling around and you’ll find another pleasant nook with benches along the east shore.