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Tim

Good backpacking spot

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Need some advice. I am trying to introduce my wife and daughter into backpacking. Looking for a mellow 2-3 day trip with lakes that is good late August. No more than 4-5 miles per day.

 

Thanks,

Tim

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Three Sisters Wilderness in central OR might fit the ticket. Four mile hike in to Green Lakes, then plenty of stuff to explore on day hikes.

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The best is probably the Enchantments but it might not be described as "mellow" going up or down Aasgard pass. Everyone in the party would want to be athletic. But it's perfect for the 2-3 day range and you do a loop, go in and come out at different trailheads that are on the same road. The scenery can't be beat, although camping permits are very problematic.

 

Something near Cascade pass, but it would be an out and back on the same trail in 2-3 days, and there's lots of bears that time of year.

 

The Wonderland trail on Rainier, (just part of it) the North side is nice, start at Sunrise and go to Carbon River or Mowich Lake in 2-3 days. Lots of goats and close up with glaciers.

 

Keep in mind this was an unusually high snow winter/spring, places that don't usually have snow may have snow crossings into the fall that you need to be prepared for. Or check before hand with the rangers if it's clear or not.

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There's a web of trails and lakes heading north from White Pass that would fit the bill, pretty casual walking.

 

Buckaroo's Wonderland Trail suggestion is pretty great too, it puts the big damn mountain on display nicely and those alpine meadow "parks" up there are dreamy. Consider whether the crew is up for the hump from Carbon River up to Mowich Lake, but do that part if you can.

 

Most of the really wow stuff in the Cascades requires substantial physical effort.

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Another option for pretty good payoff for modest effort: Go either way out of Stevens Pass on the PCT. Lake Valhala is about 5 miles to the north. To the south, there is a lake about 4-5 miles in. Both would be nice out and back over night trips or go in, base camp, day hike / explore for a day, then come out on the 3rd day.

 

Valhala can also be reached via a shorter approach (~3 miles) from the north by driving to the east a short distance and going north up a FS road (I don't recall the one at this point), then taking a side trail to the PCT then going south. I took my brother and 8 y/o niece out to this in the summer of '09 for their first overnight trip. It's quite "mellow" on the difficulty scale.

 

By late August the snow should be long gone at these locations. Pick days with good weather if you have schedule flexibility.

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can second the wallowas. fun place for sure! different feel than cascades, a lot of it more open.

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