Well, you certainly don't hike Snow Lake to get away from it all.
On the other hand, it is only an hours drive east of Seattle, so its hard to argue with the convenience of just jumping out of bed and hitting the trail. Snow Lake's trail head is right off of the Alpental ski resort parking lot. Perhaps a quarter full when we pulled in at ten, by the time we left it was as packed as you'll ever see it at peak season.
It is, however, a pretty hike. Dusty, shade covered trail soon gives way to that classic talus and granite "pavement" of the central cascade hikes. Views of Alpental and Granite Mountain all feature in this relatively easy 7 mile RT (the 1,400 foot elevation gain does nothing to scare away the crowds either).
Its a hike that quickly rewards you with views of valleys, wild flowers, and creeks flowing by a well groomed trail. And while the crowd was determined to turn the lake into their own personal swimming pool, I can imagine hitting this trail again in the early morning or weekday. As it was, we ended up hiking away from the crowd, up small creek to a boulder with a couple small waterfalls falling around it. With this particular trail, you have to take what it gives to you.