Baker River Trail

North Cascades National Park, Washington

Distance2.6mi
Elevation Gain580ft
Trailhead Elevation775ft
Top914ft
Elevation Min/Max775/914ft
Elevation Start/End775/775ft

Baker River Trail

Baker River Trail is a hiking trail in Whatcom County, Washington. It is within North Cascades National Park. It is 2.6 miles long and begins at 775 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 5.2 miles with a total elevation gain of 580 feet. Near the trailhead there is parking. The trail ends near the Sukphide Creek Camp site.

Baker River Trail Professional Reviews and Guides

"Take this easy 5-mile out-and-back day hike or overnighter through rain forest to the southern foot of Mount Shuksan in North Cascades National Park. Along the way you’ll pass through lovely old-growth forest and along the tumbling Baker River. This low-elevation hike also offers virtually year-round access for restless hikers when higher trails are snowbound.

From the Picket Range to the Skagit River, the Baker River cuts a deep swath through the western North Cascades, draining the south slopes of the two preeminent peaks of the region, Mount Baker and Mount Shuksan. Its upper reaches are wild and trailless, while its lower section is followed by roads and impounded in two large reservoirs."

"This trail penetrates a remote and forgotten corner of North Cascades National Park, offering an easy stroll through the ancient forests along one of the wildest of the Cascades rivers.

The trail begins as an old road that wanders along the riverbanks, which are robed in a young forest of hemlock, cedar, and red alder. Plentiful rainfall creates favorable growing conditions for club moss, which hangs like a shroud from the branches of the vine maples. Soon there are views of the water."

"Saunter along a pristine waterway birthed by massive ice fields and glaciers in the heart of the North Cascades wilderness. Explore wide gravel banks ideal for siestas and peering up at the towering and rugged summits surrounding you.

Marvel at massive cedars and their adaptive growing techniques, from hugging boulders to sprouting in riparian zones. With its mere probe into the mostly roadless North Cascades National Park, this trail will make you feel like you’re miles away from civilization."

Baker River Trail Reviews

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8/12/2018
A super easy hike among old huge cedar trees along the river. It's fun to take kids and dogs on this one. Little elevation gain but lots to do and see! Really nice views of Mt. Shuksan along the trail. There are opportunities for camping, picnicking, kayaking in the lake, or just admiring the beautiful area.
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6/3/2007
Baker Lake Trail is washed out about 1.5 miles from trail head so I went back and tried Baker River Trail which shares the same trailhead. It's washed out about 1 miles from where it joins the Baker Lake Trail. The two together, however, make for a very nice roughly 5 mile hike along the Baker River(now roaring) and Baker Lake. Lots of beautiful old growth in the area and all in all a very pleasant couple of hours hiking.
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7/3/2006
Beautiful!! Baker river is gorgeous, see snow capped mountains and running river at same time. Easy hike, few ups and down, nothing major. Very cool suspension bridge towards beginning of hike. Semi-long drive from hwy 20 to head of trail is totally worth it.
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Trail Information

North Cascades National Park
Nearby City
North Cascades National Park
Parks
Kid-friendly
Accessibility
Mount Baker–Snoqualmie National Forest, Pass required for most trails
Local Contacts
USGS Mount Shuksan; Green Trails Mount Shuksan
Local Maps