Kendall Katwalk

North Bend, Washington 98045

Kendall Katwalk

Kendall Katwalk Professional Review and Guide

"This hike passes through some of the most beautiful mountain terrain in the easily accessible Snoqualmie Pass area. It’s all on the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT), which sticks to the high country and crosses incredibly steep slopes in places. One such slope is the 70-degree rock slab that the Kendall Katwalk crosses. To make a safe path across this slab, trail builders used dynamite to blast away a long rock shelf."

More Kendall Katwalk Professional Reviews and Guides

"The Katwalk offers a remarkable hiking experience—striding on a narrow shelf hundreds of feet in the air. The trail, blasted into the cliff face by dynamite crews hanging suspended from ropes, is perfectly safe once the winter’s snow has completely melted off. If snow lingers, don’t attempt to cross—it’s not the place to slip and fall. There is, of course, more to this hike than the just the Katwalk. The Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) climbs from Snoqualmie Pass through old-growth forests, dances through a log-littered avalanche slope (a perfect place to see just how powerful an avalanche can be), and traverses broad, steep-sloped wildflower meadows.

The forest thins as the trail gains elevation, and at about 3.5 miles into the hike the forest starts to break up as small clearings and meadows appear. Soon, the trail angles across the open meadows below Kendall Ridge. Red Mountain fills the skyline ahead while wildflowers color the ground around your feet."

"Forget the “Katwalk” name—it’s inappropriate. Cats don’t belong on trails, even precarious perches such as this. No, like the rest of the 2600- mile Pacific Crest Trail (PCT), which runs from Mexico to Canada, this section is purely a dog’s trail.

Who wants to hike in old clearcuts? When they are packed with huckleberries, I do! Besides, the old clearcuts found on the lower portion of this route peter out quickly as you climb the ridge and enter old stands of forest before cresting the ridge and dropping into the picturesque lake basins. To get there, from Snoqualmie Pass drive east on Interstate 90 to exit 54 (Hyak) and turn left (north) at the bottom of the exit ramp."

"This classic hike along the Pacific Crest Trail leads out to the dynamite-carved Katwalk.


Descriptions of this popular section of the Pacific Crest Trail usually conjure images of a vertigo-inducing shimmy across an exposed cliff face hundreds of feet in the air. The reality is much more tame and pales in comparison to the stunning panorama from the top of Kendall Peak."

"A cliff-side catwalk adds drama and views to this convenient-to-Seattle stretch of the Pacific Crest Trail. Bonus: There’s plenty of water and shade to keep pups cool and hydrated on hot days.

This entire hike is on the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT), and it’s about as rugged and remote-feeling an area as you can find on a day trip near I-90. The trail starts at the top of Snoqualmie Pass and goes north for 6.0 beautiful miles, leaving the freeway far behind and probing into the Alpine Lakes Wilderness Area. The Katwalk itself is a unique feature—a narrow man-made shelf blasted into a 70-degree granite cliff. The view from the Katwalk is among the best near Snoqualmie Pass. From the Katwalk and the craggy upper sections of Kendall Peak—which the trail traverses—the freeway is out of sight and earshot, allowing hikers to experience the wilderness to the north in its silent, car-less glory."

"Hike through attractive groves of ancient forest before traversing the sun-kissed, ?owery slopes of Kendall Peak high above Snoqualmie Pass. Then do a gingerly little dance on the Katwalk, a dynamite-blasted passageway across sheer granite cliffs. Follow the Paci?c Crest Trail (PCT) north, joining day hikers, through-hikers, section hikers, and probably a few new hikers along the way.

The trails starts in old growth--survivors of the railroad -grant checkerboard tracts that were heavily logged along Snoqualmie pass in the 1980s. In typical PCT fashion, the trail gently ascends, making long, sweeping switchbacks. Cross several creeks and enter the Alpine Lakes Wilderness around 2.2 miles. Pass through a bouldery area, enjoying views of nearby peaks and descend 100 feet, skirting beneath ledges and crossing a cascading creek."

"This is one of those classic Cascade Mountain hikes justifiably famous for lots of reasons. First and foremost are the wildflowers; you’ll see plenty of them in the talus fields the trail traverses. And then there’s views everywhere: northward to Mount Thompson and into the heart of the Alpine Lakes Wilderness, south to Mount Rainier, westward across the valley to Red Mountain and Guye Peak, east to Keechelus Lake. Finally, don’t miss the Katwalk—a stretch of trail blasted out of a rock wall. All this makes the Kendall Katwalk one of the most popular hikes around Snoqualmie Pass, so be prepared for herds of people on sunny weekends.

Plants You Might See: Aconitum columbianum, Monkshood, Ranunculaceae Anaphalis margaritacea, Pearly everlasting, Asteraceae Asarum caudatum, Wild ginger, Aristolochiaceae Erigeron glacialis, Subalpine daisy, Asteraceae Erythranthe guttata, Yellow monkeyflower, Phrymaceae Erythranthe lewisii, Lewis’s monkeyflower, Phrymaceae Goodyera oblongifolia, Rattlesnake plantain, Orchidaceae Lilium columbianum, Leopard lily, Liliaceae Rhododendron albiflorum, White rhododendron, Ericaceae Trillium ovatum, Trillium, Liliaceae Veratrum viride, Green false hellebore, Liliaceae"

Kendall Katwalk Reviews

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7/13/2018
An awesome hike! I like to backpack here but the trek is definitely doable in a day (a very long day). This hike must be considered "difficult" due to the length, because it really is more moderate. The elevation gain is very gradual, hardly strenuous. Fantastic mountain views.
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9/28/2008
This is one of the best trails I have been on in Washington. The only problem is picking a spot to turn around. We went on a day hike and just kept going around the next bend to see what was around it we ended up doing about 15 miles on our day hike. I liked it so much I did it twice in three weeks. and plan to do a backpack in next summer.
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Kendall Katwalk Photos

Trail Information

North Bend
Nearby City
Dog-friendly
Accessibility
12.0
Distance
Out-and-back
Trail Type
Moderate to Difficult
Skill Level
6 hours
Duration
Mid-July to Oct
Season
Wildflowers
Features
Mount Baker–Snoqualmie National Forest, North Bend Ranger District; (425) 888-1421
Local Contacts
USGS Snoqualmie Pass; Green Trails no. 206, Bandera
Local Maps