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Hiking Rattlesnake Lake | WA, USA

Dec. 15, 2016

Looking for some adventure, we set off on cold, crisp morning to Rattlesnake Lake. At first we were taken on some backroads by the car’s GPS. We quickly discovered that we were not prepared for the road and should have gone another way. We took a more traditional route to reach the parking lot at Rattlesnake Lake. I had packed some snacks and water, but my husband said “Nah, we don’t need those. It is just a short hike”. NOT.

We reached the trail head that said the hike would be 1.9 miles one-way. And, I thought that that shouldn’t be too bad. So, with my tripod and camera bag, I headed up the mountain with Cody. We quickly realized how bad the trail was. It was so compacted from hikers that all snow had been turned into ice. Anyone going down-hill was guaranteed to have at least a couple slips and a major fall.

DSC08102We came across many hikers – most just as unprepared as us. Some had to quit and head back down. Others who had the determination made it to the top, somehow in just running shoes and even with an old dog. One man who we met at the top of Rattlesnake Ledge was from Sweden. He was fully equipped with walking sticks and chains on his shoes. He was, by far, the smartest person there.

I brought out my tripod and got some great pictures of the snow-covered mountains and the semi-frozen lake below. After getting this much needed break, Cody and I headed down the mountain with two people that we made friends with along the hike.

It was a downward spiral of what seemed like an icy tundra. I slipped and fell many times with my camera and equipment. Luckily my falls were always backwards and never forwards onto my face, unlike my husband’s. It was slow-going for over an hour to get to the base of the mountain. Finally, we congratulated each other on making it through and reached the lake. Sunset was only a half hour away. So, we asked one of the hikers to take a picture of me and Cody. When sundown finally came, I was ready with my lens.

I aimed to capture the bright colors of the sky and a tree stump which sat above the frigid water. I felt that the stump would complement the scenery – dead wood among a sleeping, frozen lake. After the sun disappeared, we headed back home. I sat in the car, hardly feeling my legs, while eating all of those snacks I wish I had brought.

Please enjoy the video blog from this trip! Just watch the video below or click here. If you wish to see photographs from this hike, visit the gallery.

Video Transcript

Rattlesnake Lake, WA

Kristina: Ok, first video blog in Washington State, woohoo! We’re going to Rattlesnake Lake and Rattlesnake Ridge, and Cody has a secret spot from when he was a kid that he’s gonna show us today, so I’m excited. Who’s excited? Hopefully we’ll get lots of great photos. More like I will get lots of great photos because I am the only one that brought a camera today.

Big rock! Don’t slip!

Give my camera back to me!

Cody: Babe! That’s a big ice patch! I’m done.

1 hour later….

Kristina: Ok, so the trail was a lot worse than we thought. Super icy, so now we’re super sweaty. But we’re at the top. This isn’t the ledge part, but here’s a view. That’s Mt. Si. And that’s a long way down.

Cody: No coat.

Kristina: Ok, let’s get to the ledge. It’s Rattlesnake Ledge not Ridge, but it’s supposed to be really pretty, so we’ll see.