Getting Kids Out Into Nature

Bagley Lakes

Distance: 2 miles RT

Elevation Gain: 150 ft.

High Point: 4300 feet

Season: Mid summer through early fall

Description: This delightful trail goes parallel to the stream between Lower and Upper Bagley Lakes. Children will enjoy the wildflowers, gurgling stream, cool bridges, and easy walking. From the parking lot you’ll descend briefly to the trail, where you have a choice. Younger children will want to turn left and walk the smoother trail, while older children and adults might want to try crossing the bridge over the stream to follow the Chain Lakes Trail. This part is a bit more difficult, with a few more rocks, stream crossings, and general ups and downs. There are some unique wildflowers in this area, and children can look for butterflies and birds. Once you reach the Upper Lake, you will see a fantastic bridge that crosses the outlet stream. Find a place near the lake to rest and have a snack before continuing back on the trail you took or making a loop on the other side. Older kids might enjoy extending the distance by trekking up the trail uphill to the Wild Goose Trail and circling back to the parking lot that way.

Directions: From I-5 in Bellingham, take Exit 255 for Hwy 542, Mt. Baker Highway. Travel this road for about 56 miles; just past Picture Lake, watch for the large parking lot on the right signed for Bagley and Chain Lakes. You’ll need your NW Forest Pass to park. There are vault toilets at the trailhead.

Links: Read the WTA description of the hike.