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The Route

Follow the Skykomish River as it winds through the western slopes of the Cascades and you ascend to 4,061-foot Stevens Pass, east of Sultan. The Stevens Pass Greenway, a National Scenic Byway on the Loop, is home to inspirational views, hikes and natural landscapes. In late spring and early summer, the Skykomish River is immensely popular for whitewater rafting. Fishermen line the banks and drift boats float the more tranquil waters that surround prized fishing holes. Hikers explore alpine lakes and soaring peaks. Autumn (particularly the first weeks of October) welcomes leaf-peepers eager for shades of gold and orange, while winter ushers in ski, snowboard and snowshoe season. Be prepared to encounter snow when traveling in the winter! Check mountain pass conditions at wsdot.com/traffic/passes.

The highway climbs toward the foothills and passes through the historic mining and logging towns of Sultan, Startup and Gold Bar, each rich in history, local charm and outdoor activities. 

Continue driving east and visit Index, nestled on the banks of the Skykomish River, just 1 mile off Highway 2. Home of Outdoor Adventure Center, family-owned rafting and kayaking outfitter, and jumping-off point for world-class guided white water rafting. Get your climbing gear ready and hit up the famous Index Town Wall, considered to be one of the nation’s premier rock climbing destinations. To see stunning views from your vehicle: when in Index simply look up toward Mount Index, neighboring Bridal Veil Falls, the Town Wall or the Skykomish River. Index has been called one of the most photogenic places on earth. 

The Stevens Pass Greenway provides eco-friendly drivers access to multiple electric vehicle charging stations. (See the pull-out map for charge station locations.)

Stevens Pass Visitor Services

Current Info

Traffic Conditions 

WSDOT Traffic Cameras

WSDOT Projects Along US 2

Stevens Pass (Mountain Pass info)

Current Weather

Numerous tribes lived in this region, including the Snohomish Tribe along the western edge and the Snoqualmie River near Monroe and along the Skykomish River. Per the Treaty of Point Elliott in 1855, the tribes were incorporated into the Tulalip Tribes as the federally recognized successors to the Snohomish, Snoqualmie, Skykomish, and other allied tribes and bands. Today, these tribes work hard to maintain their distinctive traditions and ways of life. Euro-Americans first explored the more easily accessible coastal areas, but with the introduction of fur trading, exploration turned inward. The Cascade mountains attracted traders of beaver pelts and other fur-bearing animals in the early 1800s. As more homesteaders arrived in the 1850s, a greater need for reliable transportation arose. In 1888, the Great Northern Railway Engineer John F. Stevens surveyed a more direct route from St. Paul, Minn., to Everett, crossing the Cascade mountain pass that later bore his name.

Your Stevens Pass Adventure
EV Charging Stations
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White Water
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Fish On!
Fish The Sky River!
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Side Trip: Osprey Park
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Rafting the Skykomish with Outdoor Adventure Center
Art By the Bay-Stanwood
Evergreen State Fair, Monroe
Evergreen State Fair, Monroe
Evergreen State Fair, Monroe
Top Ten Things to do in the North Cascades
The North Cascades’ 13 million acre ecosystem includes 7 million acres of protected public lands on both sides of the border – and endless opportunities for recreation, exploration, naturalizing and recharging one’s soul. Here are some of my favorite places from the northern end of the range, where I’ve lived, worked and taught for more than three decades. Read More >>>>
Watchable Wildlife: Black Bear
Encountering a black bear in the wild is thrilling and crazy scary at the same time. Spring and fall are the best times to view these predators, and it is not uncommon to see scat while hiking trails in the areas natural areas. Enchantments Park near Leavenworth is a regular hangout in the spring for a momma (cow) and her cubs, and if you plan to camp in the National Forest, be Bear Aware! During Fall the bears are focused on increasing their fat stores for winter, and will eat almost… Read More >>>>
Salmon Viewing Locations on the Loop
The following is a list of salmon viewing areas near the Cascade Loop. For a statewide list and details, visit http://wildfishconservancy.org/resources/view-wild-salmon-steelhead Osprey Park, SultanOsprey Park is a short drive off the highway near Sultan. It is 85 acres of wetland and riparian habitat following the Sultan river, with two miles of gentle trails where you can see hundreds of ducks and birds, plus thousands of Chinook, coho, chum, and pink salmon, are frequently observed during the fall spawning season. This is a great place to watch for and observe spawning salmon… Read More >>>>
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+ Destinations
      Lake Chelan Valley
      Leavenworth Cascade Foothills
      Methow Valley
      North Cascades
      Skagit Valley & Fidalgo Island
      Snohomish River Valley
      Stevens Pass Greenway
      Wenatchee Columbia River Valley
      Whidbey Scenic Isle Way
+ Accommodations
     Bed & Breakfasts / Country Inns
     Farm Stay
     Hotels & Motels
     Large Group Venues
     Lodges & Resorts
     Pet Friendly
+ Dining & Wineries
      + Farms Stands
      + Wineries & Vineyards
+ Indoor Activities
     Art Galleries & Studios
     Performing Arts
      + Shopping
+ The Great Outdoors
     Aerial Adventures
     Boat Tours
     Farms & Barns
     Fishing & Hunting
     Gardens & Outdoor Art
     Horseback Riding
     National Parks, Forests & Recreation Areas
     Photo Tours & Lessons
     Scenic View Points
     State & Local Parks
     Water Activities
     White Water
     Wildlife Viewing
      + Winter Fun
+ Visitor Info/Services
     National Forest Ranger Stations
     Scenic Byways along the Loop
     Traveler Services: Gas, Snacks, Auto Repair
     Visitor Centers, Tourism Bureaus, Chambers
     Washington State Resources
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