When my hiking friends and I were scoping out a good, new hike for the weekend, we decided upon Barclay Lake. It's about an hour and a half from downtown, and totally worth the drive. It's a real simple drive, East on Highway 2.
This hike has little to no elevation gain, and it's about 4 and a 1/2 miles round trip. We hiked along a creek for a lot of the way, until we reached the lake. It's a small lake, surrounded by mossy greenery. It can have a bit of fog lingering into the morning, which is very pretty.
We were surprised when we passed by 3 different campsites that had been set up. Free camping? I made a note to myself mentally to not forget this was a spot for free camping! But fair warning, you'll have to hike your camping gear in 2 miles, to reach a spot to camp. So I suppose that is the downfall to this free camping.
We had a nice little picnic, stopped to take a few pictures and headed back out for the day. This is a very family friendly hike!