What better way to beat the heat then go on a grueling 9 mile hike!!

So I decided to look through my bucket list hikes as my plans changed and I wanted to find a hike closer to home. Bridal Veil Falls looked like a pretty good one. Once you see the Falls you can continue on to Lake Serene. Seemed reasonable. Only 9 miles round trip. I made it Mailbox Peak so heck I’m good for any hike!  Right???

We headed out early because the weather in Seattle in unusually warm. Like 90 degrees HOT!!  We arrived at the trail, along with about one hundred other people with the same idea!  The trail meanders through the forest. Even at 8 am you could tell it was going to be a hot one! The first section of the trail is pretty good. Nice easy trail. A couple miles in we made it to the fork that sends hikers up to the right for Bridal Veil Falls or continue straight to head towards Lake Serene. I headed for the Falls and Tami headed to the lake as she has already been to the Falls. The Falls is a mile round trip back to the main trail. There were a few stairs along the way but I was happy with how quickly I made it to the Falls. The Falls were much larger than I was expecting and you are right next to them. There was a nice spray coming off the Falls which helped with the ridiculous heat. I took a couple photos then headed back to the main trail to catch up with Tami.

Well that’s where the fun started!  I’d read the hike description and it mentioned stairs. I guess I had in my mind what that might look like. Boy was I wrong. There are stairs upon stairs, upon stairs, upon stairs. They are followed by lots of rocks to walk on, over and around!  Did I mention stairs???  It is essentially straight up the mountain!

Switchback after switchback. Although it wasn’t as bad as Mailbox it had a similar feeling of “This trail is never going to end”!!  I swear I had hiked for three miles but looking at my gps map I had only covered about a half mile. Well that sucked!!  Dripping in sweat we exited the forest into the beating sunshine. So glad I packed two extra large containers of ice water!  I drank every ounce!

We finally made it to the top and we dropped into this area surrounded by tall mountain peaks, some of which still had a bit of snow. In the middle was this gorgeous green lake!  Lake Serene lives up to its name!!  We were so ready to find some shade, eat and relax a bit. We found “lunch rock” which is a favorite spot for hikers. Today it was full of hikers jumping off the rock and into the water to swim and cool off.   We found a couple trees to hang the hammock from for some relaxation. So glad I added that tommy pack!!

The climb down seemed much faster but it was a little tricky. Stepping over rocks and trying not to fall and break an ankle. It took us an hour to get back to the trail interchange. I’ve never been to happy to see a parking lot in my life!!  Air conditioning waiting in the truck!!

For some reason I like to pick the hottest days of the year to take on the most grueling hikes!  Mailbox Peak in 85 degree weather and Lake Serene in 90 degree weather. Not a good plan!!

What to plan next???  So many PNW adventures await!!

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