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Lake Whatcom Trail

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Lake views, family friendly, wildflowers and waterfalls
Near:Bellingham, WA
Distance:6 miles round trip
Elevation Gain:100 ft
Hike Time:2.5 hours
Trail Condition:Well maintained trail
HikeType:Out and Back

Summary: Lots of large Douglas fir trees, cedar, maple and Madrone trees. The trail ends in 3 miles at a fenced private property. This is a good hike for birding. Lake Whatcom basin was carved by a glacier over a mile thick. It is filled by rain, mountain streams and water diverted from the middle fork of the Nooksack river which comes from the Deming glacier on Mt. Baker. This lake supplies water for over 60,000 people in the Bellingham area.
Trailhead: From Bellingham, drive around the lake on North Shore Drive to Agate Bay. Stay to the right and then go left in 2.5 miles. to the trailhead. It is just past a bridge over Smith Creek. Take the path on the right down to the trail. (Lat:48.72757 Lon:-122.30776)
Trail Guides for Lake Whatcom Trail:
Hiking Whatcom County
by Ken Wilcox  (NW Wild Books)

Best Seasons: Year-Round
User Groups: Hikers, Dogs, Bikes,
Ranger Contact: Bellingham Parks and Recreation 360 676-6985
Localhikes Reporter: This hike was submitted by Robbie Hochreiter, who has posted  24 other hikes on this site. To visit this reporters web site, click here.
Trail Reviews  Page 1 of 2   Submit your own review
Reviewed by ALJ on 9/12/2016
Keep your dog on leash like the signs say, out of other people's/animal's spaces, pick up it's poop, and we'll all enjoy the trail more!

Reviewed by Robert on 1/17/2011
Easy hike along the lake: would be as peaceful as the wonderful review by MJM says except for the off-leash dogs. Some previous reviewers here mentioned that it is an off-leash area for dogs: This is not true. There are several signs starting from the parking lot that clearly indicate that dogs must be kept on-leash. Note that the other names for this trail are North Lake Whatcom Trail, and Hertz Trail. See Whatcom County parks info for more details about this trail and the other "trail" at the parking lot that leads up the gravel road to the mountain above. See also:

Reviewed by Ariel on 6/3/2009
I have run this trail many times through out the year. It's not much of a "hike" if that's what you're looking for but the lake view is beautiful.

Reviewed by adam on 2/19/2009
i have hiked many of the listed hikes on this site and have already or would do most of them again but have not yet written a review until now. unless you live within walking distance from this "trail?" please do not waste your time its better spent anywhere else on the list

Reviewed by MJM on 2/20/2008
the wind slowly brushes my face. the sound of waves collapsing is interupted by the chirping of birds. All around is green. I blink often because of the small amounts of sun peaking through the trees are startling in the pure calmness. This is the defonition of freedom.

Reviewed by chelsea and mat on 7/9/2007
this is part of our usual hike rotation our dogs love the lake and that its flat and easy to see us if they wander. we usually hike up the falls a ways and that part is harder so we get some arobics but i have been going here for 15 years, my parents hike it every day to photograph some rare plants and birds.its beautiful in every season

Reviewed by bryce on 8/15/2006
really flat and chill. lots of people in summer, and LOTS OF DOGS as well. watch out for soft rocks! awesome waterfall that a friend and i climbed barefoot and top'd out. sketchy slippery spots here and there (waterfall) and a really dang cold hot tub sized pool mid-way up. good walking trail, but the drive is crappy when u're stuck behind slow drivers. GO THE SPEED LIMIT! (at least!). thank you

Reviewed by cw on 4/8/2005
This is my favorite trail to show my out of town visitors how accessible the natural beauty of my home area is. From the lush beauty of the cedar and fern forest at the beginning of the trail, to the wonderful views of Lake Whatcom and it's watershed, to the glorious waterfalls tumbling down the rocky mountainside, this is truly a breathtaking yet easy hike. My dog Henry loves it too! He's able to run the trail offleash and jump in the lake whenever he wants.

Notice: Traveling in the backcountry can be hazardous. You are responsible for informing yourself about these hazards and taking necessary precautions. Information on this web site comes from volunteer reporters and may contain errors or omissions. A current guidebook and proper equipment are essential for safe enjoyment of the hikes posted on this site.
Keys: Washington Hiking, Washington Trails, Washington Hikes, Whatcom County Hiking, Whatcom County Trails, Whatcom County Hikes

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