Elevation Gain
400.00 ft (121.92 m)
Trail type
4.40 mi (7.08 km)
Warming hut
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

The well-groomed trail from Benson Sno-Park to Big Lake traces the paved road accessing the area in the summer. This certainly enables a generally mild route on which to experience the winter basics: flocked evergreens, deep powder, snow clad mountains, and more. Given that this is a multi-use trail, you are likely to encounter other types of winter recreation enthusiasts. Snow machine users and cross-country skiers also use this clearly marked path.

You will find plenty of parking at the Benson Sno-Park. From here, follow the road to the campground along the shore of Big Lake and enjoy the views of Mount Washington above the lake. The lake could be frozen over - remember to take care if crossing a frozen lake; assess the ice and avoid crossing if the ice is too thin or cracking. 

Many find snowshoeing enjoyable for its solitude and the ability to travel anywhere across the snow without making an impact on the terrain. Enjoy exploring this area, and if you will be traveling off of the main trail, be sure you can find your way back!

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass

Sno-Park Parking Permit (required in OR + WA 11.01 thru 04.30)


Well-groomed trail. Clearly marked route. Mild grades. Expansive wintery views.


Snow machines also use the trail.

Pets allowed


Trailhead Elevation

4,600.00 ft (1,402.08 m)


Big vistas

Groomed trail


Snowmobiles allowed




Big Lake snowshoe starting from Benson-Sno park is a real treat for the novice snowshoer. The trek is relatively short and flat and the view at Big Lake is phenomenal. If you get luck you may even get treated to show at sunset.
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