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Lake Crescent

A lake north of Crescent Mountain at the head of the South Fork of Spukwush Creek in the northwest sector of Mount Rainer National Park was named for nearby Crescent Mountain. It is drained by Spukwush Creek to the Carbon River.



Tour skirts the south shore of the lake. Cupped about by steep, forested mountain slopes, the lake’s smooth surface reflects an alpine setting that has made it the leading resort center in the northern section of the Olympic Peninsula. Many inns, camps, and cottages border the route around its curving shores. The bottom of the lake, some 600 feet below the surface, is lower than sea level. It is the only known home of the Beardslee trout, noted for its fighting qualities; some of these fish weigh as much as 35 pounds.

It was named Lake Everett in 1856 when John Everett and John J. Sutherland trapped and hunted on it and Lake Sutherland. It was changed to the present name in 1890 through agitation by citizens of Port Crescent, on the Strait of Juan De Fuca to the northeast. That place was named for the crescent shape of the shoreline.


Historic view of the main highway along Lake Crescent.

Source: Washington State Archives

1946 main highway near Fairholm, formerly known as Lake Crescent.

Source: Washington State Archives