You are here

Elevation Gain
?
Trail type
There-and-back
Distance
11.00 mi (17.70 km)
Warming hut
No
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.

Skirting outside the northern border of the Alpine Lakes Wilderness, the Elizabeth Lake snowshoe and ski route winds up a mining road through a chattering creek valley, ending near a charming little 7-acre lake. On a clear afternoon, the snow-dusted highpoints that form the broad valley walls become visible throughout the second portion of the trip, adding a splendid backdrop to the lush hemlock, cedar and fir forests.

Depending on the time of year and current snow level, the route tends to vary by a mile or two in length. The idea is to drive as far as possible up Money Creek Road and park on the ample shoulder space at the snow line (usually around the first mile marker). Mossy groves and the constant flow of Money Creek occupy your attention for the first 3 miles, which go by fairly quickly.  The creek bed widens and affords nice views of Goat Basin and Lennox Mountain to the south. The next attractions can be found another mile up the route where two unnamed waterfalls flow into Money Creek. Carefully descend the creek bank a few yards for the most photogenic views. 

Shortly after the falls, the road switches back once to gain some elevation and as it leaves the creek. From this point, the atmosphere becomes more spacious, with Crosby Mountain, Red Mountain and McLain Peaks rising up around you. The expansive Money Creek headwaters hint that you are only a short distance from Lake Elizabeth, where the road passes above the south shore. For a bit more adventure and some alternative vantage points, you can circumnavigate the lake via the 0.7 mile summer trail. 

Recommended Gear

Before you head out on your next Mount Hood adventure, make sure you have the right gear! 

Here's a list of our go-to snowshoeing essentials to get you started:

Snowshoes: MSR Lightning Ascent Snowshoe

Cushioned, Made in USA, Ultralight, 98.8 oz

Men's • $299.95 • MSR | Amazon | Backcountry | REI

Women's • $299.95 • MSR | Amazon | Backcountry | REI

Jacket/Shell: Arc'teryx Zeta AR Jacket

Waterproof, Adjustable Drawcord Hem, Pit Zips, GORE-TEX

Men's • $431-475 • Arc'teryx | Amazon | Backcountry

Women's • $475 • Arc'teryx | Amazon | Backcountry

Pack: Mammut Nirvana Pro Pack 

35L, Carry-On Size, Hip Belt, Ice Axe / Pole Loops, Hydration Compatible

Standard Fit • $189.95-199.95 • Mammut | Amazon | Backcountry

Small Fit • $199.95 • Mammut | Amazon

Insulating Layer: Moosejaw Dequindre Down Jacket

Water-resistant, Insulated, Adjustable Drawcord Hem

Men's and Women's • $179

Poles: Black Diamond Traverse Pole 

Aluminum, Adjustable with Lever Lock System, 21 oz.

$79.95 • Black Diamond | Amazon | Backcountry | REI

Gloves: The North Face GORE-TEX Gloves

Waterproof, Adjustable, Insulated, GORE-TEX

Men's • $99.95-181.63 • The North Face | Amazon | Backcountry

Women's • $99.95-100.00 • The North Face | Backcountry

Boots: Vasque Snowblime UltraDry Boot

Waterproof, Cushioned, Insulated

Men's • $149.99 • Vasque | Amazon | Backcountry

Women's • $149.99 • Vasque | Amazon | Backcountry

Gaiters: Outdoor Research Verglas Gaiter 

Waterproof, Breathable, Lightweight, Abrasion-resistant

Men's • $41.32-65 • Outdoor Research | Amazon | Backcountry | REI

Women's • $49.95-65 • Outdoor Research | Amazon | Backcountry | REI

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Winter

Congestion

Low

Parking Pass

Not Required

Pros

Waterfalls. Frozen alpine lakes. Mountain views.

Cons

Several dry creek crossings. Unmaintained route.

Pets allowed

Allowed

Trailhead Elevation

1,154.00 ft (351.74 m)

Net Elevation Gain

1,700.00 ft (518.16 m)

Address

NF-6420
Gold Bar, WA 98251
United States

Features

Big vistas
Waterfalls
Cross-country skiing

Typically multi-day

No

Groomed trail

No

Location

Field Guide + Map

Nearby Adventures

Alpine Lakes Wilderness, Washington
Alpine Lakes Wilderness, Washington
Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest

Nearby Lodging + Camping

Alpine Lakes Wilderness, Washington
Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest
Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest

Comments

Have updates, photos, alerts, or just want to leave a comment?
Sign In and share them.