Backpack to Russet Lake

Rate this Adventure Canada Whistler Village Gondola

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Distance: 15 miles (25 km). Elevation gain: 1,870 ft. (570m). Duration: 2 days, 1 night. Alpine camping. Great views.

Russet Lake is a beautiful alpine lake at the base of Fissile Peak in the backcountry of Garibaldi Provincial Park. This trip is well suited for two nights but can be accomplished in a full day without a pack.

Your starting point is Whistler Village Gondola, then up the Peak 2 Peak Gondola to the summit. Head eastbound toward Flute Summit, across Musical Bumps. You’ll start seeing signs for Russet Lake straight away. Across Musical Bumps there are several ascents and descents totalling 1,870 ft (570m). For a different route out, you can take Singing Pass trail to the village. The signage can be confusing since they get damaged during the winter months so just make sure you’re headed southeast for the most part and look for Flute Summit, Singing Pass, and Russet Lake. If you're not familiar with the area or alpine hiking, the first route is your best bet.

For the best views, take your time in Flute Summit. From there you’ll see Black Tusk and Cheakamus Glacier. To time your trip with the mountain wildflowers, try to aim for late July or mid-August. If you’re brave enough, Russet Lake is great for swimming but stays cold year round. Seeing people on these trails is rare, especially in the middle of the week, but pack in a tent just in case the hut is fully occupied. The hut is located at the northeast corner of the lake and does not require reservations.

Bears, cougars, deer, marmots, and pika are in these hills. You’ll likely hear marmots whistling away during the summer months which is where Whistler got its name.

Pack List

  • Tent
  • Sleeping bag
  • Backpacking Essentials
  • Water
  • Camera Equipment
  • Skis / Snowshoes (winter)
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Activities:

Camping, Photography, Backpacking, Hiking

Skill Level:

Advanced

Season:

Year Round

Features:

Forest
Lake
Scenic
Wildflowers
Wildlife

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about 2 years ago

Fantastic hike, and the skies are unreal.

about 2 years ago

Added by Tyson Jerry

Seeks wild places in the mountains and oceans. Photographer.

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