Pets allowed
Elevation Gain
2,700.00 ft (822.96 m)
Trail type
3.00 mi (4.83 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

According to the ancient Greeks, the Minotaur was a half-man, half-bull that lived in a complex maze called the Labyrinth. Theseus, a mythological hero, killed the Minotaur to save sacrificial children from being devoured by the beast. But don't let the gory nature of the namesake of Minotaur Lake scare you away from this beautiful alpine gem.

Minotaur Lake lies just beneath the rocky summit of Labyrinth Mountain and west of Theseus Lake. This hike is an excellent way to refresh your Greek mythology while enjoying some easy-access alpine scenery. Of course, the easy access is all relative; while the hike to Minotaur Lake is less than 2 miles long, the trail gains over 1,000 feet of elevation in the first mile. After that, the trail relents a bit. As it enters greener meadows on its way to the lake, you can catch your breath and observe colorful wildflowers along the trail. Overnight visitors can choose from several backcountry campsites on either side of the lake, which offers swimming opportunities if you're not afraid of cold water. Be sure to bring bug spray, since the mosquitos enjoy the lakeside views as much as we do.

Above the lake, Labyrinth Mountain beckons for exploration. Skirting around the east side of the lake provides the easiest way to the top. From the broad, open summit, views of Glacier Peak and myriad other peaks abound on a clear day. Listen for the squeaks of pika darting along the rocky slopes. Watch for birds and butterflies zooming above the summit ridge. Savor all that nature has to offer before descending the steep trail back to your car. 


Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass

NW Forest Pass


Breathtaking views. Nice swimming hole. Several camping options.


Short and steep ascent. Rough roads to trailhead.

Trailhead Elevation

3,676.00 ft (1,120.44 m)


Backcountry camping
Big vistas


Nearby Lodging + Camping

Eastern North Cascades + Lake Chelan, Washington
Eastern North Cascades + Lake Chelan, Washington
Eastern North Cascades + Lake Chelan, Washington


Oh man, despite this trail being basically straight up, it quickly moved towards the top of my list. You will put the effort in to reach the incredible rewards at the base of the Labyrinth. Preceding the incredible views of Theseus Lake are several great meadows of wildflowers. Moving past these you will come to the outlet for Minotaur Lake. It is at this point that the views will go out in every direction. Stay right and head to the cliff overlooking Theseus Lake. Stay left for a prime campsite overlooking Minotaur Lake. If you go left consider pushing yourself for the summit of Labyrinth Mountain. There is an easy to follow (but steep) footpath that leads you up. Find the start of it in the northeast corner of Minotaur Lake.
Have updates, photos, alerts, or just want to leave a comment?
Sign In and share them.