Gouging Lake by Cascade Mountain / 鑿洞湖

Last week, we avoided the rain by visiting the Wenatchee area. Then our goal for today was Cascade Mountain. But we ended up turning around at Gouging Lake because of the shorter daylight.

Gouging Lake below Cascade Mountain
Gouging Lake below Cascade Mountain

See more trip photos here.

Gouging Lake at a Glance

Access: West Fork Miller River Road
Round Trip: TBD
Elevation Range: 1280′-4040′
Gear: snowshoes
GPS Track: available
Dog-Friendly: with guidance

Coney Creek Crossing

Other than climbers and hunters, West Fork Miller River Road doesn’t see many visitors. The road-turn-trail was decent through to Coney Creek. Then the pup and I spent nearly an hour looking for a place to cross the raging water.

It was warmer than usual at this time of the year. So the excess water could be the result of recent snowmelt. When we finally crossed the creek, I decided that we would stop at the lake. We were short on daylight with a late start.

See more trip photos here.

Miller River Road’s End

Beyond the creek, brush and slide alder soon inundated the trail. Later, snow patches appeared at the 1800′ elevation. Then more of it showed up from 1900′ onward. But it was only ankle deep. So I didn’t need snowshoes yet.

We spent much of the road walk in the shade. So it wasn’t too exciting. The road finally came to an end. From there, we crossed the Miller River on a big, wet log. Just on the other side of the water, we crossed one more creek. Then the terrain steepened drastically.

See more trip photos here.

Scrambling up to Gouging Lake

It was a super brushy scramble. And at times, it was unbearable. So we couldn’t move very efficiently. Later I put on snowshoes at 3800′, 200 feet shy of the lake. When we reached the lake, then the snow became knee-deep.

The lake was gorgeous. But it was much smaller than I had expected. There it was. The grand Cascade Mountain rose behind the water. But too bad we didn’t have enough time to climb it. So, better luck next time!

See more trip photos here.

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