Washington Pass Overlook

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Washington Pass Overlook

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  • The trail to Washington Pass Overlook.- Washington Pass Overlook
  • Early Winters Spires (left, 7,807') and Liberty Bell (7,720') from the overlook.- Washington Pass Overlook
  • Highway 20/North Cascades Highway curves beneath Liberty Bell.- Washington Pass Overlook
  • Liberty Bell Group.- Washington Pass Overlook
  • Looking east to Kangaroo Ridge.- Washington Pass Overlook
  • Looking northeast toward Kangaroo Ridge and Silver Star Mountain.- Washington Pass Overlook
  • Liberty Bell Group. From right to left: Liberty Bell (7,720'), Concord Tower (7,560), Lexington Tower (7,560'), North and South Early Winters Spires (7,760' and 7,807').- Washington Pass Overlook
  • Large rocks along the Washington Pass Overlook loop.- Washington Pass Overlook
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Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Easy access to great views.
Cons: 
Weekend and summer crowds.
Region:
North Cascades, WA
Congestion: 
High
Preferable Season(s):
Spring, Summer, Fall
Day-Use/Parking Pass Required:
NW Forest Pass
Points of Interest:
Viewpoint, Geologically significant
Dogs allowed: 
Yes

Current Local Weather

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Today

Flurries in the morning.
24°F

Thu

Mostly cloudy starting in the evening.
29°F

Fri

Light snow (under 1 in.) until evening.
25°F
10°

Sat

Snow (under 1 in.) starting in the evening.
27°F

Sun

Light snow (1–2 in.) throughout the day.
26°F
11°

Mon

Flurries starting in the evening.
26°F

Tue

Light snow (1–2 in.) throughout the day.
30°F
12°
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Adventure Description

Adventure Description

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Washington Pass Overlook is an obligatory stop on the North Cascades Highway. At 5,500 feet, it is the road's highest point and the dividing line between eastern and western Washington. The pass features restrooms, picnic areas, interpretive signage, and an overlook with incredible mountain views. It's the perfect roadside rest area for drivers crossing the state.

From the parking lot, walk 400 feet along a paved, flat trail to the overlook. At just a quarter mile round trip, anyone can do it. Prepare for awesome views. Once you reach the mile-high rocky outcropping you will be surrounded by North Cascade peaks. The Liberty Bell Group in particular demands the most attention. This family of nearly 8,000-foot spires rises dramatically to the south, inspiring countless photo shoots, posters, and logos bearing its likeness.

700 feet below, a hairpin turn in the North Cascades Highway seemingly slows traffic to a crawl. Check out Kangaroo Ridge to the east, where you're likely to spot golden larch trees in October. Follow the trail around for a short loop up some stairs and back to the parking lot. Or, take the flat route back to your car. Either way, the views will leave you breathless.

Updates, Tips + Comments

Updates, Tips + Comments

Field Guide

Field Guide

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Location + Directions

Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(8 within a 30 mile radius)

Nearby Adventures

(15 within a 30 mile radius)

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