Lake Creek is a tributary of the Baker River which runs out of Shuksan Lake and cascades nearly 3,000 feet in just over a mile before merging with the river just below the Baker River Trail. While the majority of this lofty drop is, surprisingly, just steep cascades down a talus-choked gully, the creek makes an impressive and surprisingly scenic plunge over this 166-foot tall waterfall as it nears the valley floor. The falls are made up of two distinct drops - a 45-foot tall horsetail tucked in a narrow grotto which can barely be seen, followed by a 121-foot tall plunge which first chutes out of the narrow gorge above and then pitches into a near free-fall to a small blue pool below. During high water periods it is likely that this tier of the falls will feature a powerful roostertail, with the stream shooting out several dozen feet from the cliff face as it enters the free-fall.
Over the years Lake Creek has significantly modified the geology of its channel. Flooding has deposited a significant alluvial fan near the mouth of the creek, and a significant landslide broke free from the cliff adjacent to the falls (likely during the record-setting 2003 floods) which may have resulted in a portion of the bottom of the falls being buried. The detritus from the landslide dominates the canyon near the falls and while unsightly is surprisingly solid (for the time being) and actually provides easy access to excellent vistas of the entire waterfall. Visitors should, however, be aware that such geology is naturally unstable and could shift or give way at any time (particularly after the influence of additional flooding or heavy rain).
- Lake Creek Falls is the Unofficial name of this waterfall.
Lake Creek Falls is accessed from the Baker River Trailhead located at the end of the Baker Lake Road, 28 miles north of Highway 20. Lake Creek runs under the Baker River Trail about a mile and a half from the trailhead (do not cross the Baker River on the large suspension bridge), and the falls are found about one-quarter of a mile upstream from the trail. The easiest way to access the falls is to follow one of the large dry washes (the best one to use is the largest wash, marked by an old moss-covered log footbridge lying on its side and partially buried by rock) upstream to the canyon proper, and then rock-hop along the creek until the falls are visible. It will be necessary to cross the creek at least once, but it should be possible to access the falls without getting wet (dry washes will lead most of the way up to the canyon proper, from which point it is possible to keep to the right of the creek all the way to the falls). The final climb up the landslide debris cone below the falls is steep, but surprisingly stable (for the time being).