Hiking Project Logo

Cascade Pass Trail

Intermediate/Difficult
 5.0 (8)

Spectacular views of high peaks, glaciers, and everything else in between on this amazing trail.


Your Rating:      Clear Rating
Your Difficulty:
Your Favorites: Add to Favorites · Your List
Zoom in to see details
Map Key

15.4

Miles

24.7

KM

Point to Point

5,366' 1,636 m

High

2,133' 650 m

Low

1,906' 581 m

Up

3,393' 1,034 m

Down

7%

Avg Grade (4°)

25%

Max Grade (14°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features River/Creek · Views · Waterfall · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Cascade Pass is the site of a major revegetation effort. Seeds and cuttings are collected here and nurtured in greenhouses. Later they are planted back to heal old scars. Please help in this effort by staying on designated trails and stopping for breaks on trail or rock!

Description

The Cascade Pass Trail is a stunning hike with views of peaks and glaciers. The trail rises steadily to the pass, from which hikers may explore in several directions. The Cascade Pass Trail is also a popular starting point for climbing routes to Sahale, Boston, Mixup, and Magic Peaks, and the Ptarmigan Traverse into the Glacier Peak Wilderness.

The trail switchbacks through dense, wet forests then traverses through meadows to the pass. While hiking listen for the roar of falling ice from hanging glaciers on Johannesburg Mountain and the sound of water from the many cascades which give this park and its mountains their name.

Just to the east of the pass, the Sahale Arm Trail veers steeply north towards Sahale Peak. The views from Sahale Arm are breathtaking as the trail ascends through subalpine meadows and over steep rock scree, before ending at the toe of the Sahale Glacier and a designated campsite.

From Cascade Pass, you can also head east and downward towards campsites at Pelton Basin and a popular side-trip to Horseshoe Basin - a spectacular steep-walled cirque with waterfalls, wildflowers, and an historic mining site.

Past Horseshoe Basin, the trail continues into the Stehekin Valley, following the course of this scenic river for much of the route. This trail provides access to the east side of the park, including the village of Stehekin. Because of severe flood damage to the old Stehekin Valley Road, it is now a 23-mile (37 km) hike from the Cascade Pass parking lot to the Stehekin shuttle bus at High Bridge.

Flora & Fauna

Look and listen for wildlife, such as marmots and pikas on rock slopes. Deer, and sometimes black bear, may be seen in meadows. Please help the wildlife stay wild; do not feed them!

Cascade Pass is in the subalpine life zone, a place of deep snows and brief summers. A show of yellow glacier lilies and other brightly flowers quickly follow melting snow. Look for mountain heather, a short, woody evergreen shrub with pink blooms. Although heather thrives in this harsh environment, its brittle stems easily succumb to careless steps.

Contacts

Shared By:

Tom Robson

Trail Ratings

  5.0 from 8 votes

#234

Overall
  5.0 from 8 votes
5 Star
100%
4 Star
0%
3 Star
0%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Trail Rankings

#17

in Washington

#234

Overall
225 Views Last Month
3,774 Since Jan 14, 2016
Intermediate/Difficult

0%
0%
60%
0%
40%
0%

Photos

Cascade Pass.  On the Ptarmigan Traverse, this point is where you turn photo-right and start route-finding off the trail.
Oct 11, 2016 near Diablo, WA
Hikers crossing the talus slope on the way to Cascade Pass.
Jan 11, 2016 near Stehekin, WA
This woodland trail is perfect for viewing wildlife.
Jan 11, 2016 near Stehekin, WA
The route up to Cascade Pass is spectacular, with incredible views!
Jan 11, 2016 near Stehekin, WA
Almost at Cascade Pass - beautiful views everywhere!
Jan 11, 2016 near Stehekin, WA
Heading up Cascade Pass Trail.
Jan 13, 2016 near Stehekin, WA

0 Comments

Weather


Current Trail Conditions

Update Conditions
Unknown See History
Add Your Check-In

Check-Ins

Aug 9, 2019
Stephanie Falch
Jul 27, 2019
E M
Aug 28, 2018
Ethan A
7mi — 5h 00m
Aug 21, 2017
Grey Cannibal
7.1mi
Jul 3, 2017
Brett Sabol
Sep 24, 2016
Thoren Palacio
Mar 16, 2016
Nate D
Cascade pass trail as the lead-in to the Ptarmigan Traverse. The Ptarmigan Traverse as a whole is the best outdoor adventure I've had to date, a m... 44.8mi — 192h 00m
Sep 4, 2015
Sonia Boller