• View from Sourdough Mountain Overlook  A view looking down onto Diablo Lake. Photo Credit: NPS/Michael Silverman, 2010.

    North Cascades

    National Park Washington

There are park alerts in effect.
show Alerts »
  • Cascade River Road will be open as normal through fall/winter 2014

    Cascade River Rd. will be open in 2014 until snow conditions make it impassable to vehicles, as normal. The road closure that was planned to begin September 8 has been postponed beyond 2014 due to unforeseen circumstances. More »

  • Lone Mountain Fire - National Park Service Trail Closures

    The Lone Mountain Fire in North Cascades National Park is approximately 5 mi NW of Stehekin in the Boulder Creek drainage. Boulder Creek Trail is closed. More »

  • Re-opening of Adjacent U.S. Forest Service Road and Trails that Access North Cascades NP Complex

    The area closure of the Twisp River Road and the Lake Chelan-Sawtooth Wilderness in the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest due to wildfires has been lifted as of August 19, 2014. More »

Birds

Park Flight Volunteer
Nito, a biologist from Costa Rica and volunteer in the Park Flight Migratory Bird Program, uses his well-worn guidebook to educate park visitors.
David Snyder for the NPS
 
Birds are significant components of biological diversity within the North Cascades ecosystem. Over 200 species in 38 families can be found in park habitats that range from alpine meadows to low elevation forests and wetlands. Three species (bald eagle, marbled murrelet, and spotted owl) are listed as "threatened" under the federal Endangered Species Act. The rivers, lakes and streams of the North Cascades attract breeding, migrating, and wintering birds. The Skagit River attracts one of the largest wintering concentrations of bald eagles in the continental United States. Clear, fast-flowing rivers and streams host breeding populations of Harlequin ducks.
 
Many species including raptors that breed further north migrate through this area in spring and fall. Over half of the species breeding in the North Cascades are migratory species. Hummingbirds, flycatchers, vireos, swallows, thrushes, warblers, tanagers, and grosbeaks are among the species that return annually in spring. These migrants fly thousands of miles from their winter homes in the southern United States, Mexico, Central America, and even South America to breed in the park. May through July, male olive-sided flycatchers, warbling vireos, Swainson's thrushes, Wilson's warblers, and western tanagers sing from conspicuous perches to attract females and defend territories, all part of their annual breeding cycle. In August and September, having raised another generation of offspring and molted new feathers, they migrate south, returning to their winter homes. Birds reflect changes to our environments. By monitoring their populations, distributions, and such demographic attributes as productivity and survival, birds can serve as "early warning signals" for environmental problems occurring in and around the North Cascades.

Did You Know?

Did You Know?

Stephen Mather Wilderness comprises 93% of the North Cascades National Park Service Complex. About 400 miles of trail provide access to this rugged Wilderness.