This nice little landscape will take you through various scenes along the trail. The main looping trail here is a pretty easy hike, as the main loop is under 2 miles. There are other pathways that explorers can use to extend this hike a bit, and some of them skirt right along the lake’s edge. The terrain is easily manageable in most areas, but can become muddy in spots. As hikers progress along the trail, there will be notices of private property and trail users should respect those notices. The best time to hike through the area is early to mid Spring, as the wildflowers will be coloring the hillsides. The Washington Trails Association points out that Arrowleaf Balsamroot will be plentiful in the Spring, and that is also the best time to see the other wildflower varieties. The waterfall will also be at it’s strongest flow during this time of year.
The lake is open in the Winter for fishing as well, as it opens the Friday after Thanksgiving as stated by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife. It is a relatively popular trail, and can be used by people of any skill level as suggested by AllTrails.com. The trails out there are great for dogs but keep them on a leash and keep them away from the edge of the higher cliffs. Hikers will also be able to potentially see a variety of songbirds and larger wildlife. Deer have been seen in the area, and once in a while a coyote is spotted. Smaller mammals such as squirrels, chipmunks, and other animals can be spotted along the trails as well. Visitors should also be aware that insects and spiders will also be found as the weather warms up. Hikers may also encounter some smaller snakes on the rocks overlooking the lake, and the vast beauty continues throughout the entire hike.
There are no fees or passes required to visit the area, which is another great reason to visit Hog Lake. The trails are all pretty easy to identify and follow, although as mentioned on The Washington Trails Association it is possible to become confused with some of the cattle trails that scatter the hillside. As I mentioned above however there are property boundary signs, which are private property markers for the farms surrounding the area. That is also the reasoning for some of the gates people may encounter along their journey at Hog Lake. A trip report on theoutbound.com mentions those same gates, but goes on to mention the incredible views to be encountered along the trails. Also claiming that some of the best landscape photos can be taken on the ridge-lines that carry the trail along the cliff’s edge. It is truly an experience to make time for, and one that will be sure to create a great hiking adventure.
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