Granite, Bertha May + Pothole Lakes

Mount Rainier Area, Washington

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Granite, Bertha May + Pothole Lakes

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  • Teeley Creek Trailhead.- Granite, Bertha May + Pothole Lakes
  • Old-growth forest en route to Pothole, Bertha May, and Granite Lakes.- Granite, Bertha May + Pothole Lakes
  • Early views of Mount Rainier (14,411').- Granite, Bertha May + Pothole Lakes
  • Pothole Lake.- Granite, Bertha May + Pothole Lakes
  • Old-growth forest en route to Bertha May and Granite Lakes.- Granite, Bertha May + Pothole Lakes
  • Deer fern (Blechnum spicant) along the side of the trail en route to Bertha May Lake.- Granite, Bertha May + Pothole Lakes
  • Intersection of the Teeley Creek Trail and the Big Creek Campground Trail.- Granite, Bertha May + Pothole Lakes
  • Bertha May Lake and Sawtooth Ridge beyond.- Granite, Bertha May + Pothole Lakes
  • Bertha May Lake.- Granite, Bertha May + Pothole Lakes
  • Bertha May Lake and Sawtooth Ridge beyond.- Granite, Bertha May + Pothole Lakes
  • Bertha May Lake.- Granite, Bertha May + Pothole Lakes
  • Backcountry campsite at Bertha May Lake.- Granite, Bertha May + Pothole Lakes
  • Mushroom along trail en route to Granite Lake.- Granite, Bertha May + Pothole Lakes
  • View through the woods toward Mount Rainier (14,411') from Granite Lake.- Granite, Bertha May + Pothole Lakes
  • View through the woods toward Mount Rainier (14,411') from Granite Lake.- Granite, Bertha May + Pothole Lakes
  • Backcountry campsite at Granite Lake.- Granite, Bertha May + Pothole Lakes
  • Granite Lake and Sawtooth Ridge.- Granite, Bertha May + Pothole Lakes
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Clear alpine lakes. Easy backpacking hike. Family friendly.
Cons: 
Clearcut at trailhead.
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Region:
Mount Rainier Area, WA
Congestion: 
Moderate
Pets allowed: 
Yes
Net Elevation Gain: 
560.00 ft (170.69 m)
Parking Pass: 
NW Forest Pass
Preferable Season(s):
Summer, Fall
Suitable for: 
Hiking
Biking
Horseback
Total Distance: 
3.00 mi (4.83 km)
Trail type: 
There-and-back
Trailhead Elevation: 
3,640.00 ft (1,109.47 m)
Current Local Weather:
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Hike Description

Hike Description

Team

There are many ways to access Granite, Bertha May, and Pothole lakes, but hiking in from NF-8410 using the Teeley Creek Trail presents the most direct access and is thus a great choice if you are looking for a shorter trip or a family-friendly adventure. The easy hike leads through beautiful stands of old-growth forest with Douglas firs, vine maple, and devil's club as constant companions. You'll get plenty of views of Mount Rainier, but your closest views will be of the Sawtooth Ridge that frames the basin for this trio of lakes. This jagged ridge is aptly named, and its peaks beckon to hikers spending a night or two in the region.

From the trailhead, you'll encounter Pothole Lake, the smallest of the three, after just a quarter mile. Grab a snack here, because the trail climbs a bit before it reaches Bertha May Lake in about a half mile. If you are here for an overnight, you'll find a backcountry campsite along the north shore of Bertha May Lake, or you can continue across the outlet for Bertha May Lake and walk the short distance to Granite Lake for two more campsite options. Of the three lakes, Granite Lake is the highest, largest, and comes with some of the most spectacular views of the Sawtooth Ridge. Each has its own character, however, and really this hike is about the sequence of lakes along such a short and accessible trail. Of course, if you want to extend your adventure, there is no shortage of beautiful destinations to aim for. Consider Cora Lake on the Big Creek Trail if you are looking to add a few more miles to your day, or loop around to climb to the High Rock Lookout Tower for excellent views of the entire area.

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(24 within a 30 mile radius)

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