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Lake Serene & Bridal Veil Falls in Seattle

A fantastic hidden lake in between two peaks with an impressive waterfall

Lake Serene & Bridal Veil Falls
Lake Serene & Bridal Veil Falls
Lake Serene & Bridal Veil Falls
Lake Serene & Bridal Veil Falls
Lake Serene & Bridal Veil Falls

Lake Serene is a great hiking destination, located just a 1.5-hour drive from Seattle. The trail to the lake starts with the lush surrounding forest. After about 3 km the road ends and you can take a 1-km staircase to Bridal Veil. It is a 1,328-foot (405 m) waterfall that flows from Lake Serene to the South Fork Skykomish River. If you come in the summer, you can enjoy bathing under a waterfall.

After seeing the falls, you can return to the main trail and start to climb for about 3 km. On the top, you'll see the stunning Lake Serene. The water in the lake is chilly even in the summer but it's possible to swim in.

Summer is definitely the most popular time to make this hike. If you decide to do it in the fall or early winter, make sure to wear waterproof boots since the trail will be more like a stream. If you come in the winter, you have to have snowshoes and other snow gear.

Practical info

When is the ideal time to go to Lake Serene & Bridal Veil Falls?

The ideal time to visit Lake Serene & Bridal Veil Falls is between May and September. Summer offers a less challenging hike and the chance to swim in the falls. Trail conditions are tougher during the fall and winter months, requiring more preparation for those venturing out. Show more

Where can Lake Serene & Bridal Veil Falls be found?

Lake Serene and Bridal Veil Falls are located in Washington State in the United States, about a 1.5-hour drive from Seattle. The trail starts close to Gold Bar, Washington, travels through dense forest and a stream before reaching the picturesque Lake Serene between two peaks. Show more

What is the length of the trail to Lake Serene?

The Lake Serene trail is roughly 8 miles round trip (13 km). The route begins in dense forest, leading to Bridal Veil Falls, where a staircase of a kilometer waits. After that, the ascent continues on for about 3 km, eventually reaching Lake Serene. Though the trail may be moderately strenuous, the reward at the end is worth it. Show more

When is the optimal time to swim in Lake Serene?

Swimming in Lake Serene is best from May to September when the water is less cold. Although the water temperature is still chilly in the summer, it's possible to swim and is an enjoyable experience. Bridal Veil Falls, also situated on the trail, is a great place to bathe as well. Show more

What kind of precautions should be taken while hiking in the fall or winter?

Hiking in the fall or winter requires distinct preparations than in the summertime. Visitors should be ready for icy, snowy, and muddy conditions. They should wear waterproof footwear and warm clothing, as well as bringing snow equipment such as snowshoes, hiking sticks, and micro spikes. Visitors must be mindful of the trail's slippery conditions, and exercise caution when navigating it during these seasons. Show more

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Last updated: by Eleonora Provozin