National Parks

North Cascades National Park, Washington


North Cascades National Park is in Washington State, USA and is well known for its North American Alps, conifer-clad mountain ranges, picturesque lakes, cascading waterfalls, and glaciers. This park is usually overshadowed by other two national parks, Mount Rainier National Park and Olympic National Park, but North Cascades park is really a hidden treasure of Washington state.

These photos are from a two day trip to North Cascades National park in late August 2013.

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Quick Facts and Tips

  • Best Time to Visit
    • Summer Months: July to August when wildflowers are blooming.
    • Spring and Fall Months: Pleasant, but most park roads will be closed.
  • Fly into: Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, Washington USA
  • Clothing
    • Comfortable pants, hiking shorts, t-shirts, tank tops, capri, sweatshirts, comfortable walking/hiking shoes, and rain gears. Spring and fall will be cool, so dress in layers.
  • How Many Days
    • Main Attractions: 1-2 days
    • Doing Hiking/Camping: 3-5 Days
  • What to Expect
    • Vast wilderness of conifer-clad mountains, Glaciers, Mountain Ridges, Wildflower, Clear Lakes, Waterfalls, Green Valleys, Wildlife
  • Be sure to check the Park Website for alerts on road closures and current trail conditions.
  • Entrance Fee: Free.
  • Take food, water, and start early in the morning, so you can spend the day touring, as there are only few restaurants throughout the park.
  • Weak/no cell phone signals, highly recommend to have maps downloaded or printed.
  • There is a lot to capture, so keep your camera ready. Make sure that the camera is fully charged and also keep backup batteries and memory cards.
  • Places to Visit
    • North Cascade Highway: Diablo Lake, Rainy Lake, Liberty Bell, Washington Pass, Ross Lake
    • Mt Baker Highway: Nooksack Falls, Picture Lake, Artist Point, Mt Baker Wilderness Area
  • Best things to do
    • Drive the scenic North Cascade Highway. Stop at all the lookouts to enjoy and capture the beauty of nature.
    • Enjoy the beauty of the unique and intense turquoise color of Diablo Lake at Diablo Lake overlook. Astonishing views are easy to access, right at the parking lot. There are some picnic tables, so that you can relax and relish the gorgeous Diablo lake views.
    • Enjoy hiking to the beautiful Rainy lake. The hike is in the lush green woods and winds through wildflowers, waterfalls, and streams.
    • Visit Washington Pass Overlook, the last point of interest on the eastbound of North Cascade Highway, which offers a stunning view of Liberty Bell Mountain.
    • Enjoy the drive through the scenic Mt Baker Highway and visit Picture Lake and Artist point. Artist point is the starting point for many great trails in the Mt. Baker area.
  • Popular Hikes on North Cascade Highway
  • Popular Hikes on Mt Baker Highway
  • Nearby Attractions