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Phelps Creek

Central Cascades

Location

Central Cascades -- Stevens Pass - West
View map below

Length

7.2 miles, roundtrip

Elevation

Gain: 3500 ft.
Highest Point: 5500 ft.

Rating

3.50 out of 5

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Parking Pass/Entry Fee

None
 
 

Phelps Creek Trail offers relatively easy access to the remote Glacier Peak Wilderness, particularly Spider Meadows and the larch-ridden Carne Mountain.

Beginning at the Phelps Creek Trailhead, follow Phelps Creek, climbing very slowly through dense forest. Just a quarter-mile from the trailhead, Carne Mountain Trail branches off north and switchbacks steeply uphill to a stunning land rich with golden larches in autumn.

Continuing on, the Phelps Creek Trail enters the Glacier Peak Wilderness 2.6 miles from the trailhead, and continues to climb slowly, crossing several rivers that may be high and difficult to ford, depending on the time of year.

Soon arrive at a crossing of Leroy Creek. Just after the crossing, the Leroy High Route branches steeply up to the northeast. This is another destination with plenty of larches, but it's a more rugged hike with more than a little route-finding required.

Straight ahead, the Phelps Creek Trail rolls out for another three miles. These may be difficult to navigate if there is snow on the ground, but if not, the forest soon reveals Spider Meadow — a wildflower-filled, breathtaking meadow surrounded by craggy peaks, old landslides and blowdowns.

Here it's possible to camp in several designated campsites. The Phelps Basin Trail continues through this wild meadow for another half mile, terminating at the north end (though stock are not allowed for the final half mile). It's possible to continue on up to Spider Gap and the North Cascades beyond, but this route is unmarked and unmaintained.

 

Phelps Creek

Map & Directions

Trailhead
Co-ordinates: 48.0830, -120.8349 Open map in new window

Trailhead

Central Cascades -- Stevens Pass - West

Phelps Creek (#1511)

Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest, Wenatchee River Ranger District

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Guidebooks & Maps

Green Trails Maps 113 Holden

Getting There

From Everett head east on US 2 for 85 miles to Coles Corner. (From Leavenworth travel west on US 2 for 15 miles.) Turn left onto State Route 207 (Lake Wenatchee) and proceed 4.2 miles to a Y intersection after crossing the Wenatchee River. Bear right onto the Chiwawa Loop Road, and after 1.3 miles turn left onto the Chiwawa River Road (Forest Road 62). Proceed for 22 miles (the pavement ends at 10.8 miles) to a junction. Bear right onto FR 6211 and proceed for 2.3 very rough miles to the trailhead at the road's end (elev. 3500 ft). The hike ends just north of the Phelps Creek Campground, requiring a 3-mile road walk back to your car at the end.

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

None
 

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Phelps Creek

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