“A beautiful but difficult trail spanning from forest to valleys to meadows; a wonderful run!
— climbing bums
Lake · River/Creek · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife
Rising out of the forest and ascending to the high valley, this trail covers a lot of different terrain types. The trail changes from nice wide almost groomed doubletrack with easy switchbacks, to technical singletrack filled with roots and sharp rocks, and multiple creek crossings. The major two have awesome bridges over them, perfect for photo ops!
Sharp rocks and big roots abound in sections making this a very technical trail.
Starting from Crescent Creek trailhead, the Crescent Creek Trail starts out in dense forest, rising steadily on a few switchbacks. As the initial climb tops out, the trail traverses across the toe of a slope and continues along a side hill with a deep valley below.
The steepness of the slope alternates between long and mellow to short and punchy. There are also a few segments where the trail tip toes along narrow singletrack below some rock walls. It's very scenic through here - just watch the trail ahead.
The route then crosses an avalanche field (sometimes covered in snow) and continues to climb a bit more before crossing a bridge to the opposite side of the creek. From here the climb ramps up a bit until you reach the Crescent Lake valley. It's mostly open through here with a few cool sections of flagged pine trees. As the trail levels out, the views become vast.
From here to the lake, the route rolls gently downhill across a moraine to a bridge at the bottom of the lake. Cross the bridge and you'll eventually find yourself at the northern tip of Crescent Lake and the Crescent Lake Forest Service Cabin
Flora & Fauna
Wildlife includes moose, black and brown bears, and Dall sheep. Hunting for these species in designated seasons. Fishing for grayling is best in the western half of Crescent Lake. Grayling are also present in Crescent Creek.