Stevens Pass Greenway
Follow the Wenatchee River through the Cascade Mountain peaks and Stevens Pass
|Mileage||119 miles (193 km)|
|DurationThe duration is an estimate of a one-way drive and does not include any stops or side-trips.||2 hours, 30 minutes|
|SeasonsThe seasons listed are the best seasons for this scenic drive. If Winter is not mentioned, the road may be closed during the winter.||All Seasons|
|Roadways||US Highway 2, and Washington Highway 285|
|Forest PassesSome of the adventures on this scenic drive require an admission fee that these passes cover. Please read the drive description for more information.||Pacific Northwest Forest Passes|
|ServicesThe cities or towns listed have either Food or Services such as gas, hotels, pharmacies, etc.||Monroe, WA▼, Leavenworth, WA▼, Wenatchee, WA▼, and Skykomish, WA▼|
3.2 average from 97 votes
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Natural areas along this route require an entrance fee used to protect and maintain our most scenic treasures. Save time by purchasing your forest passes before you go.
The Stevens Pass Greenway is also the southern section of the 440 mile Cascade Loop Scenic Highway. Travel from pastoral farmland and fruit orchards, to pine forest and the rugged Cascade Mountains. Immerse yourself in the multitude of recreation opportunities from hiking, biking, rock-climbing, fishing, kayaking, and whitewater rafting. Small, historic towns dot the route offering a connection to the past and warm hospitality.
While this drive can be done in either direction, we describe it beginning in Wenatchee and heading west to Everett and Whidbey Island.
Wenatchee is known as the Apple Capital of the World. Stop in the free Washington State Apple Commission Visitor Center (A4) to learn about Washington state’s largest agricultural industry. Visit roadside farms stands and orchards, or savor the region at Pybus Public Market (A9). The market is a veritable cornucopia of local farmers, specialty foods, and restaurants in one tasty location.
The Ohme Gardens County Park (H4) is one of the most popular gardens in the northwest. The gardens were started in 1929 by Herman and Ruth Ohme as their private backyard. Today the nine-acre property features winding trails that meander by flowers, trees, rock gardens, waterfalls, ponds, and stone benches perfect for quiet reflection. Located on a high cliff amid the dry Wenatchee landscape makes for outstanding views. There is an entrance fee.
Walla Walla Point Park (H15) is a 70-acre green space along the Columbia River, featuring walking paths, picnic shelters, ballfields, tennis courts, swimming, ADA fishing pier platform, and boat launch.
The 194-acre Wenatchee Confluence State Park (H14) is named for its location at the confluence of the Wenatchee and Columbia rivers. Water recreation abounds, along with a full range of park amenities such as ballfields, picnic areas, BBQ’s, and year-round camping. Take the pedestrian bridge to the Horan Natural Area which offers a 2.5 mile roundtrip trail around wetlands and the chance to spot wildlife such as birds, waterfowl, muskrats, and deer. All WA State Parks require a day-use fee or Discover Pass for entrance.
The Cashmere Pioneer Village and Museum (M1) is an open air museum with more than 20 authentically furnished, original pioneer structures. Discover Native American and Pioneer artifacts and exhibits dating back 9,000 years, as well as geological specimens, taxidermy, and ornithology. There is an entrance fee.
A unique outcropping of sandstone slabs looms in the landscape. The 34-acre Peshastin Pinnacles State Park (H8) is a draw for rock-climbers, but anyone who enjoys a short scramble up the hillside will be rewarded with superb views of the slabs up close and of the surrounding orchards.
At the junction of US-97, you have the opportunity to head south to our Peshastin to Ellensburg drive through Blewett Pass. If you are doing the drive in reverse, consider this alternative route to continue the adventure.
The Stevens Pass Greenway continues east on US-2. In 4 miles, you arrive in Leavenworth, a pedestrian-friendly Bavarian-style village that may have you thinking you should have packed your dirndl and lederhosen. Surrounded by mountains and boasting about 200 days of sunshine, enjoy lively year-round festivals including Oktoberfest, Christkindlmarkt, Timbrrr! Winter Music Festival, a Film Festival, Spring Bird Fest and so much more. A plethora of dining options, brew pubs, shopping, arts and theater await. Don’t miss the largest nutcracker museum in the U.S. Front Street Park is the main gathering place, host to special events and musical performances. Waterfront Park (H7) offers a quiet nature experience, featuring easy trails that travel along the Wenatchee River, cross onto Blackbird Island and to Enchantment Park. Enjoy bird watching and interpretive signage that examine the plants and animals that live here. One can easily spend a few days in Leavenworth. Activities include golfing, wine and cider tasting, rafting the class III rapids on Icicle River, or an easy float tubing down Wenatchee River. Leavenworth makes a great base for rock-climbing, hiking and biking adventures.
Leaving Leavenworth, you pass Tumwater Canyon. The canyon is well known by rafters for its rapids, and the area’s beauty is breathtaking, particularly during the fall.
Lake Wenatchee State Park (H6) is 5 miles north on WA-207. The glacier-fed lake is a haven for swimming, fishing, boating, and windsurfing. Kayaks and standup paddleboards are available for rent on-site. There are many trails for hiking, biking, and horseback riding. Enjoy tent and RV camping year-round. In winter, the park is beloved for cross-country skiing, snowmobiling, snowshoeing, and a groomed sledding hill. A day-use fee or Discover Pass is required for entrance.
Stevens Pass (A8) is a prime ski resort boasting an elevation of 4,061 and an average of 460” of annual snowfall. Offering runs for all levels of skiing and snowboarding ability, you’ll find lessons, equipment rentals, dining and lodging options. In summer, explore enchanting hiking and mountain biking trails, or take in panoramic views from a scenic chairlift ride. A section of the 2,650 mile Pacific Crest Trail passes here, and you’ll find many trailheads nearby.
The Lake Valhalla Trail (H12) is a 7-mile roundtrip hike with 1,500-foot elevation gain that boasts outstanding views overlooking Lake Valhalla. In fall, the foliage glows in yellows and red. You’ll need a Pacific Northwest Forest Pass or America the Beautiful Annual Pass.
The US-2 Highway marks the northernmost railroad path through the Cascade Range. Learn about local history on the 1-mile ADA-accessible Bygone Byways Interpretive Trail (H3).
Deception Falls (H2) National Recreation Area is definitely worth a stop as it offers easy viewing of the falls just a short walk from the free parking area. Towering trees, moss-draped rocks and the tumbling cascade offers a glimpse into the beauty of a Pacific Northwest forest.
Skykomish is a historic railroad town. Kids of all ages will love the Great Northern and Cascade Railway (A7). Take a free 1/8 scale train ride, explore the visitor center and gift shop. The Great Northern Railway Depot is on the National Register of Historic Places and the Washington Heritage Register. Visit the Skykomish Ranger Station (I1) for more information on nearby trails and picnic areas.
Near Index, Lake Serene and Bridal Veil Falls Trail (W3) is a popular, but difficult hike, with a 2,000 feet elevation gain over four miles. But views of the falls and the crystal clear Lake Serene make it worthwhile. The very small town of Index will charm. Drive in to ooh and awe over Mount Index which dominates the skyline. Mount Index is a premier destination for rock-climbing.
In Gold Bar, Wallace Falls State Park (H5) is a popular hiking destination. Wallace Falls drops from a height of 265 feet. Take the 5.6-mile roundtrip trail through lush fern-laced forest to the lower, middle, and upper waterfall viewpoints. Wooden overlooks are the perfect vantage point for photo ops. There are other trails for hiking and mountain biking as well.
With more than 400 antique dealers, Snohomish calls itself the “antique capital of the northwest”. Most of the Snohomish Antiques Stores (A3) are downtown, making it fun and easy to explore.
The drive ends in Everett, a bustling city chock full of amenities. While here, don’t miss the Future of Flight Aviation Center and Boeing Tour (A2). The fascinating 90-minute tour is the only public tour of a commercial jet assembly plant and you can observe the 787 assembly line along with hands-on exhibits, videos, graphics and interactive stations that’s fun for the whole family. There is a fee, advance reservations highly recommended. For safety reasons participants must be at least 4 feet tall.