State Route 20 closed at Mile Post 134, Ross Dam
After a brief closure at Newhalem due to an avalanche and unstable conditions, SR 20 has re-opened to its normal winter closure point at MP 134, Ross Dam. The highway will remain closed from Ross Dam to MP 171 (Silver Star Creek) until spring re-opening. More »
Ross Dam Haul Road Closure Continues
A short segment of the Ross Dam Haul Road between the Diablo Lake suspension bridge and the tunnel remains closed to public use due to continued recovery following a March 2010 landslide. The closure will remain in effect through 2014. More »
Notice of planned work for the Cascade River Road, fall 2014
Visitors planning to access the park via the Cascade River Road after Labor Day should be advised that the Park Service is planning a fall closure of this road at Eldorado Creek (3 miles before the end of the road) in order to perform permanent repairs. More »
Agnes Gorge Trail
I have never seen a river that I could not love. Moving water...has a fascinating vitality. It has power and grace and associations. It has a thousand colors and a thousand shapes, yet it follows laws so definite that the tiniest streamlet is an exact replica of a great river.
- Roderick Haig-Brown, Canadian writer
The Agnes Gorge Trail is a rewarding, easy day hike option near Stehekin (accessible by shuttle bus from Stehekin Landing) or those passing through the High Bridge area. The relatively flat hike traverses varied forest terrain with occasional gorge views and features a wide selection of wildflowers in early and mid-summer. Hikers who reach the end of the trail are rewarded with a spectacular gorge and waterfall.
See the detailed trail description for more information.
Backcountry Camping: Agnes Gorge is a day use area and camping is not allowed along the trail within the National Park. Nearest camps to this trail are at High Bridge and Tumwater, both located along the Stehekin Valley Road. A backcountry permit is required for all overnight stays. Permits are limited.
Access: Access from Stehekin is via the Stehekin Valley Road and Stehekin Shuttle, which runs between Stehekin and High Bridge. Hikers can also access this trail from Bridge Creek via the Old Wagon (Pacific Crest) Trail. The trailhead is located near High Bridge on the Stehekin Valley Road. Look for the second trailhead on the left after crossing the Stehekin River just upstream of High Bridge. Note that the first trailhead is the Agnes Creek (Pacific Crest) Trail--continue a short distance to the signed Agnes Gorge trailhead. Note: There is not a connecting bridge between the Agnes Gorge and Agnes Creek trails.
For more information on current trail conditions, permits, regulations and trip planning please see our Wilderness Trip Planner.
Detailed Trail Description
Early season hikers will experience a rich variety of wildflowers, birdsong, and butterflies. A small sampling of the flowers that can be encountered along the trail include: tiger lilies, chocolate lilies, lupine, paintbrush, and wild rose. The trail wanders between forest and open hillside meadows with views. After one mile (0.6 km) the trail passes through a small grove of aspens, a noticeable contrast to the ponderosa pines and Douglas firs seen up to this point. Look for claw marks left by bears on the thin aspen bark. At one and a half miles (2.4 km) you pass a rustic wooden sign announcing your entry into the U. S. Forest Service's Glacier Peak Wilderness. Soon the trail opens up to reveal beautiful views of Agnes Mountain with the Chickamin Glacier peeking over its shoulder. The maintained trail ends above a dramatic gorge with beautiful views of a cascading waterfall and the unmistakable sound of rushing water below. There was once a suspension bridge over the gorge and there are a few remnant metal components on the forest floor, as well as the concrete abutments that anchored the bridge. This is a great place to eat a picnic lunch and enjoy the view before beginning your trek back.
Did You Know?
North Cascades National Park is uploading its digital image library to Flickr! Be inspired, download your favorite images, or even add your own vacation photographs to the group pool: Friends of the North Cascades. More...