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Old Sauk ADA Loop

North Cascades


North Cascades -- Mountain Loop Highway
View map below


1.0 miles, roundtrip


Gain: 200 ft.
Highest Point: 800 ft.


2.00 out of 5


Parking Pass/Entry Fee

Northwest Forest Pass

The Old Sauk Trail now has a new trailhead that provides barrier-free access to a viewpoint of the Sauk River via a mile-long loop trail. The longer trail meanders along the banks of the Sauk River, sections of which were once part of the old pioneer trail linking Darrington to the Monte Cristo mines. Scattered mossy cedar stumps are telltale signs that long ago the area was once partially logged. Joyfully, a lovely forest remains. This gentle trail makes it easy to slow down and enjoy the stately stands of Douglas-fir and cedar as well as to spy eagles, or perhaps an occasional coyote.

The loop is best done by heading north from the trailhead, where it follows an old roadbed through grand bigleaf maples before veering onto a terrace sprinkled with sky-scraping conifers. The trail skirts the edge of the terrace while wandering between giant volcanic boulders, reminders that Glacier Peak is just upriver. After a half mile the trail begins a short descent through a mixed alder forest to the river and a viewpoint.

Back on the terrace, the trail continues by dipping down and crossing a small seasonal creek, then passing above a man-made fish channel. Here you can observe the wondrous works of beavers, and maybe even catch them in action. The hike back to the trailhead is a short quarter-mile from the channel.

For a longer hike, start at the trailhead near the Clear Creek Campground and hike to the trail’s end at Murphy Creek (3 miles), taking in the loop along the way.


Old Sauk ADA Loop

Map & Directions

Co-ordinates: 48.1895, -121.5167 Open map in new window


North Cascades -- Mountain Loop Highway

Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest, Darrington Ranger District

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Guidebooks & Maps

Green Trails No. 110 Silverton

Buy the Green Trails Silverton No. 110 map

Getting There

From I-5, take exit 208 and drive 32 miles east to Darrington. At the three-way stop, turn right (south) onto the Mountain Loop Highway for 5.5 miles to the new trailhead.

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

Northwest Forest Pass

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Old Sauk ADA Loop

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