North Cascades National Park

North Cascades National Park

Purple Creek Trail

This trail leads seven and a half miles eastward from the Golden West Visitor Center to the park boundary and War Creek Pass. It crosses Purple Pass and Lake Juanita as it climbs 5,700 feet out of the Stehekin River Valley. This route can be used in conjunction with the Boulder Creek Trail to form a long loop hike within the National Recreation Area. East of War Creek Pass the trail enters the Sawtooth Wilderness as pack trail 408.

The trailhead for Purple Creek Trail lies next to the visitor center in Stehekin. The route begins climbing immediately along the northern bank of Purple Creek. After climbing to nearly 2,600 feet the trail crosses Purple Creek, descends slightly then begins climbing again. A short distance past Purple Creek the trail ascends 800 feet in a series of short switchbacks.

At the top of these switchbacks the trail traverses the slope to the northern bank of Hazard Creek. It follows the creek for a mile before veering northward in a long switchback. The route then climbs steeply for one mile to the base of three sets of switchbacks. Once these short traverses are complete the trail has gained the crest of the ridge, which is Purple Pass, elevation 7,050 feet. Once this ridge has been gained the trail crosses it descending slightly for one mile past Lake Juanita to War Creek Pass and the eastern park boundary.

North Cascades National Park, 700 Rayovac Drive, Suite 100 , Sedro-Woolley, WA, 98284-9314, Phone: 608-264-5610


Directions from Stehekin Landing: Follow signs to the Golden West Visitor Center. The trailhead is located outside the visitor center.