Located just east of Stevens Pass in Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest, Bygone Byways Interpretive Trail is a short trail with a lot of history. The path winds above Nason Creek through a pleasant forest and craggy rocks, and it provides a glimpse into the early days of rail and road transportation across the pass.
The trail passes through several slices of history. In the late 1800s, draft horses were used to pull supplies up the “Tote Road” to the construction crews working on the first railroad across Stevens Pass. In the 1920s, an 8-mile tunnel was built and became part of the Great Northern Railway. The first automobiles soon chugged up the pass, as it was one of the first roads across the Cascades, and today Highway 2 passes just feet from the old Tote Road.
At the trailhead, you can pick up a brochure that has additional information about various stages of the trail. Walk through the blasted rocks near what used to be a railway, and keep your eye out for artifacts along the way, such as an old stone oven that was once used for baking bread. Note that the trail is only accessible from Highway 2 heading west.