Well, since we've started this new look here at Everyone's Travel Club, I thought I'd post my favorite trips from the past year here on the new site. This is one of my all-time favorites...so far.
~Paul ETC 3/12/11
Everyone's Travel Club boldly kayaks where few have kayaked before - Lake Serene, Washington!
Let me start out by saying that this trip, like a few trips before, might not be for everyone. Most people don't kayak in Lake Serene because she's almost at the top of a mountain, and, well, you have to get your kayaks up there somehow!
My friend John and I (thanks for agreeing to do this one John!) drove about and hour and a half from Seattle to the Lake Serene trailhead (look for the turn on the right, just before Index WA).
We came prepared to hike up the strenuous 3.6 mile (one-way) uphill trail to Lake Serene and kayak her with our inflatable Innova Safari kayaks. People looked at us like we were crazy on the way up with such large backpacks...they changed their tune at the top when they saw us gliding across the lake in our kayaks.
It was hot. It was in fact strenuous. With lots of water & snacks, the oars, air pumps (one spare just in case), and kayaks, our packs probably weighed in at just under 40 lbs. Did I mention it was hot? I mean, for the Northwest at least...
In all the hiking and kayaking took about 6 hours. A few to get up, a few to play around at the top and kayak, a few to get back down.
Off we go!
*Watch the forecast, you saw the left over snow in the pics right? This was in August
*Be very careful walking on the snow, the drift we were on had a small stream running under it
*The lake water was warmer than I expected, a lot of folks were swimming up there. We noticed the water got a lot colder near the other side of the lake...the side with the snow
*The sun goes behind the mountain tops surrounding the lake pretty early in the afternoon, get up there at a decent time to kayak in the sun (in the summer)
*Take more water than you think, we even took a purifier to fill up our multiple water bottles for the trip down. We met lots of people with just one tiny bottle, poor things
*Wear good shoes, sandals will leave your feet hurting, especially on the way down
*The route is self-explanatory, just follow the trail
*You'll have a choice early on to take a side trail to Bridal Veil Falls, it's awesome but extra hiking. If you really want to make it to Lake Serene and you have a kayak on your back, maybe skip this extra uphill mileage until next time
*Bug spray in the summer is a good idea, there were lots of flies on the side of the lake without the snow
*Take an extra pump for you inflatable kayaks, don't want to get up there and have a malfunction
*Once you are there and kayaking, enjoy! The lake is very difficult to walk around so when you make it to the other side you have the whole place to yourself!
~Paul & John, E.T.C.