Maple Pass Trail

Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest, Washington

Distance6.6mi
Elevation Gain5,393ft
Trailhead Elevation4,866ft
Top6,971ft
Elevation Min/Max4836/6971ft
Elevation Start/End4866/4866ft

Maple Pass Trail

Maple Pass Trail is a hiking trail in Chelan County and Skagit County, Washington. It is within North Cascades National Park and Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest. It is 6.6 miles long and begins at 4,866 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 13.5 miles with a total elevation gain of 5,393 feet. Along the trail there is a parking. This trail connects with the following: Lake Ann Trail, Rainy Lake Trail and Wing Lake Trail.

Maple Pass Trail Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

Best Dog Hikes Washington (Falcon Guides)
Lisa Wogan
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"This loop hike starts at the top of Rainy Pass, near some of the most iconic features on the North Cascades Highway. The loop trail circles Lake Ann, a beautiful glaciercarved tarn, on a high ridge speckled with larches, flowers, and blueberries. The views are dominated by the towering hulks of Frisco Mountain, Corteo Peak, and Black Peak. Beyond the emerald oval of Lake Ann, a golden ridge spreads out between Cutthroat Peak and Golden Horn." Read more
Hiking Washington (Falcon Guides)
Oliver Lazenby
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"This loop hike starts at the top of Rainy Pass, near some of the most iconic features on the North Cascades Highway. The loop trail circles Lake Ann, a beautiful glacier carved tarn, on a high ridge speckled with larches, flowers, and blueberries. The views are dominated by the towering hulks of Frisco, Corteo, and Black Peaks. Beyond the emerald oval of Lake Ann, a golden ridge spreads out between Cutthroat Peak and Golden Horn." Read more
Best Wildflower Hikes Washington (The Mountaineers Books)
Art Kruckeberg with Karen Sykes & Craig Romano
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"There are no shortages of great hikes from the North Cascades Scenic Highway. The Maple Pass Loop rules supreme among them. In 7 short miles, this trail will treat you to old-growth forests, alpine lakes, alpine meadows, open ridges, and stunning North Cascades vistas. Throughout most of the summer, you will see along this trail a fantastic floral show as well. The well-beaten and well-maintained trail begins immediately in a stately, ancient forest of fir and hemlock. Huckleberry bushes crowd the understory. In early summer find the usual culprits: Twinflower, spring beauty, and vanilla leaf bring life to the forest floor. Elderberry, gooseberry, currant, hellebore, and thimbleberry make their presence known as well." Read more
Day Hiking: North Cascades (The Mountaineers Books)
Craig Romano
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"Among the many supreme North Cascades Highway hikes, the Maple Pass loop is perhaps the most exalted. More than a few hikers have been caught humming Julie Andrews tunes while sauntering on this scenic sojourn. In just 7 non-repeating miles you’ll be treated to majestic old-growth forests, a sparkling alpine lake, resplendent alpine meadows, enticing open ridges, and stunning North Cascades vistas. And if you love wildflowers, Maple Pass’s annual floral show is a bloomin’ spectacle. Lake Ann, tucked in an open cirque beneath towering rock walls laced with cascades, makes a worthy 1-mile round-trip addition to the loop. Experienced hikers can set off on the primitive path from Heather Pass to the backcountry gems of Lewis and Wing lakes. Route-finding and off-trail experience is necessary; you’ll need to navigate a nasty boulder field and a potentially dangerous gully." Read more
100 Classic Hikes Washington (The Mountaineers Books)
Craig Romano
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"Among all of the supreme hikes on the breath-taking North Cascades Highway, the Maple Pass Loop is perhaps the absolute best! In just seven nonrepeating miles you are treated to majestic old-growth forests, a sparkling alpine lake, resplendent alpine meadows, and enticing high, open ridges granting stunning North Cascades vistas. And if you love wild?owers, Maple Pass’s annual ?oral show is a bloomin’ spectacle." Read more

Maple Pass Trail Reviews

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9/20/2009
As stated by others, a glorious and gorgeous hike. No mosquitos in mid-Sept. but a beautiful, sunny day. Guess I traded wildflowers for mosquitos but I actually had my REI hat with the mosquito netting! I found it a very tiring hike about halfway up, even after stopping to photo, pika, marmot, and chipmunk (plus trees and Mts.) but I'm from flat midwest and am heading down the backside of 50. One nitpick--at end when you come out onto Rainy Lake boardwalk trail it doesn't tell you which way to go (left/right) to get back to car park. Yes, a left was the obvious choice and I went that way for a while, then second-guessed myself and went the other way (and then back once I saw Rainy Lake). Would it be that hard to add a "Parking Lot --" notation to the "Rainy Lake Trail" sign where it and Maple Pass Trail converge?
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8/11/2008
We did this hike on the counterclockwise loop to take the easy grade uphill. Since we were hiking with our 7-year-old, we skipped the detour to Lake Ann and focused on continuing the climb to Heather Pass & Maple Pass, which turned out to be the best approach. Hiking in early August, we kept expecting the mosquitoes to lighten up as we neared the summit and got to some crosswinds, but instead they actually got worse. Don't let that deter you from making this hike, though, it was a 5-star spectacular. AMAZING wildflowers, especially after Maple Pass. Saw a very contented marmot at the summit as well. If we did this hike again, we might consider netting or at least a stronger brand of repellant. The skeeters here are just plain wicked compared to what we have in the Midwest! If you do this hike, I would recommend doing the whole loop to see both Maple & Heather passes. It's just one amazing view after another. Don't miss any of it!
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7/30/2006
This hike was amazing. Mountains, lakes, waterfalls, mountain meadows, wildflowers, wildlife. You name it, it is all here. If I could have given more than 5 stars, I would have. The walk in was one beautiful view after another. Take the time to take the Lake Ann side trip at about 1.3 mile in, but bring a LOT of mosquito repellant. It is pretty, but you will get eaten alive. Actually, you hit the mosquitos before the lake, so apply that repellant before you start the hike. Leave the lake and the climbing really starts, but it is actually fun because you will have to keep stopping to admire the scenery. Listen for the marmots (HUGE marmots, at that) whistling to each other that you are coming. When you get to Heather Pass (before Maple Pass), take the time to veer off on the trail to the right and hang out up there for a while. The views to the northwest are gorgeous. Keep on to Maple Pass and head past it a few hundred feet for the best views to the west and southwest. The glaciers are awesome. After Maple Pass, you have to climb more, but then you start descending through some fantastic meadows and along a ridge that drops away on either side to Lake Ann on the left and, eventually, Rainy Lake and it's waterfall to the right. Watch your step through these parts. The ground tended to be loose and we slid a few times. On the down side, the last 1/3 of the hike was nothing worth writing about. It was just endless descending switchbacks. It was almost as if they gave up after that point and just hacked a path with no planning. You end up on the paved path back to the trailhead. My wife and I did this one together, and we thought it was a little harder than it was rated. We were really tired at the end, but we are not hard core hikers, so others might think it easier than we did. We would do it again today, if we could, but this time we would go up to Maple Pass and come back the same way.
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10/24/2005
I'm sure it was great, but it was so cloudy we couldn't see anything...
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8/1/2003
Superb trail from start to finish. Great views of Lake Ann. Meadows, great mountain panoramas, open ridges, this trail has it all.
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Maple Pass Trail Photos

Trail Information

Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest
Nearby City
Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest
Parks
Dog-friendly, Kid-friendly
Accessibility
Moderate
Skill Level
Camping
Additional Use
Methow Valley Visitor Center, Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest, 509996-4000; North Cascades National Park; (360) 873-7200; nps.gov/noca
Local Contacts
USGS Washington Pass, Mount Arriva; Green Trails no. 49, Mount Logan, and no. 50, Washington Pass
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Dec 2018