Quote of the Month:

Nature gives to every time and season some beauties of its own." - Charles Dickens

Maple Pass Loop Trail

Parent Category: Hiking
Created: 26 August 2015
Location: North Cascades Region
Roundtrip: 7.2 miles
Elevation Gain: 2,000  feet
Highest Point: 6,850  feet
GPS Coordinates: N 48 30.972 W 120 44.124
Visitor’s Information:

Discover Pass Required

Pictures below will take you along this fascinating trail! Enjoy the fantastic scenery!

 Photo from Maple Pass Loop Trail, North Cascades Region
General Information:

Maple Pass Loop Trail is considered one of the most famous and one of the most popular hikes in Washington. Along its entire length of about 7 miles (roundtrip) it provides the hikers with unforgettable views. 

The trail is beautiful at any season: full of wildflowers in blossom in summer and amazingly decorated with various colors in autumn. 

Photo from Maple Pass Loop Trail, North Cascades Region

Before starting the trip you should make a decision concerning which route to take: clockwise or counter-clockwise. Counter-clockwise route is easier with ascent being more gradual; the clockwise route is great for more experienced hikers. But whichever route you chose, you’ll be delighted by the beauty surrounding you.

If you decide to take the counter-clockwise route (which is more popular, by the way), you should leave directly from the Rainy Pass parking lot and go on Train # 740 (to Lake Ann). This first part of the trail, which is a well maintained path going gradually upward, will lead you for about 1.3 mile through a dense second-growth forest, where you’ll be able to see spruces, fir-trees and hemlock trees. 

Photo from Maple Pass Loop Trail, North Cascades Region

Then you’ll reach a trail fork, offering you 2 options. If you turn left to take a side trip to Lake Ann (which will be more or less flat detour for about 0,6 miles. But this side trip is really worth your time and effort as you’ll be able to admire the fascinating lake in the immediate vicinity. ) or continue keeping to the main trail, going upward. Traveling this way will allow you to see Lake Ann, surrounded by numerous peaks, from a height of 1000 ft. It’s a really unforgettable experience! 

Photo from Maple Pass Loop Trail, North Cascades Region

Then after passing the trail junction, leading to Heather Pass, the trail will turn left to the ridge, leading you further upward to the Maple Pass. Walking along the ridge top you will have a great chance to take delight in viewing the alpine meadows running along the sides of the ridge with all the wildflowers they are covered with during the summer months (you can find here penstemon, Indian paintbrush, monkeyflower, sitka valerian, lupine, glacier lilies and much more), as well as enjoy the distant enchanting views of the mountain peaks, including Corteo, Goode, Frisco, Black Pea and many more, as well as views of Lake Ann and Rainy Lake. 

Very soon the trail starts quickly and steeply descending along the ridge, later taking you again through the forest. After getting onto the paved path turn left and walk about half a mile to the parking lot.

Photo from Maple Pass Loop Trail, North Cascades Region

Some additional information on the Trail:

- The open season starts in the middle of July, August - September is considered to be the best season.

- You will require a Recreation Pass at the trailhead (5$ vehicle/day).

- Vault toilets are provided at trailhead

- Drinking water – only in summer months.


These pictures were taken in August, 2013

Driving Directions:

From Seattle: You should drive the North Cascades Highway (State Route 20) through Marblemount and further for about 50 miles to Rainy Pass. The trailhead will be on the right side of the road.

GPS Coordinates: N 48 30.972 W 120 44.124

In order to get directions click on the map below:


Photo: Roman Khomlyak

Photo Editing: Juliana Voitsikhovska

Information: Svetlana Baranova

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