Distance: 3.6 miles
Elevation Gain: 600 feet
I’m sure you’ve seen photos on Pinterest of Diablo Lake. I knew that when Erica told me she was visiting, it was something we needed make a trip to go see. Diablo Lake is absolutely stunning. This was also my first time in North Cascades National Park!
We drove up from Seattle, about a 3 hour drive, and stopped at the Diablo Lake Overlook on the Cascade Loop (Highway 20). The view from the overlook is unreal. We went on a partly cloudy day, and even without completely blue skies, the color of the water is unreal.
Diablo Lake Overlook
Thunder Knob Hike
After the overlook, we hiked Thunder Knob, a nearby trail that overlooks the lake. This is an awesome hike with a short distance and gain for a great view of the lake. I wanted to pick something that wouldn’t take too long since we weren’t staying the night nearby.
Take Highway 20 east past Newhalem. Cross Gorge Lake, and follow the shoreline of Diablo Lake until you reach Colonial Creek campground, past milepost 130. Turn left and park at the trailhead to the right of the campground entrance.
The trail starts here, not in the campground. There is a pit toilet somewhat hidden behind a tree, and flush toilets along the campground entrance road, open when the campground is. This trail has been listed as wheelchair accessible, but that is no longer the case.