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Spada Lake - Culmback Dam

Central Cascades


Central Cascades -- Stevens Pass - West
View map below


1.0 miles, roundtrip


Gain: 150 ft.


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Culmback Dam and Spada Lake are a lovely retreat off Highway 2, just east of Sultan and up the Sultan Basin Road. Spada Lake is a source of drinking water for the City of Everett, so in-water activities are prohibited, but there are hiking trails that circle the lake and nearby just waiting for your exploration.

One option is to explore a decommissioned road. It's flat grade is perfect for new hikers or those simply seeking juicy berries. Several destinations line this road on either side, so there are a few options for hikers of varying levels of endurance. If you're looking for a very short hike for little ones, head to a beaver pond close to the trailhead. Those seeking a longer route can make for an overlook a little more than one mile from the trailhead, which involves a bit of up-and-down, most notable some steep sections on the approaches to creek crossings.

Your destination is Bear Creek, where you'll head for an overlook that houses benches and a lovely view of the surrounding forest and lake. Look for a sign near a large boulder that indicates your final jaunt to the overlook. Enjoy a picnic here, take some photos, and head back to the trailhead.

If you're still feeling you can head back to the main trail and press on. Ahead lie Greider Lakes and Boulder Lake, 3.1 miles and 5.7 miles down the trail, respectively.

Another trail offers hikers the opportunity to visit Culmback Dam, the North Shore, and the Sultan River Canyon Trail. The Gateway Trail, which leads to Olney Pass takes hikers past all of these and is well-signed. Picnic tables make a great spot to refresh, and restrooms are available at the trailhead.

The North Shore Recreation Site is just 2.1 miles from Olney Pass. A bike rack is available for stowing your transport, as well as picnic tables and another restroom.


Spada Lake - Culmback Dam

Map & Directions

Co-ordinates: 47.9754, -121.6865 Open map in new window


Central Cascades -- Stevens Pass - West

Snohomish County PUD

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Getting There

From Everett, drive east on Highway 2 to the town of Sultan. At the traffic light just past milepost 23, turn left (north) onto Sultan Basin Road. Follow it for 13.25 miles (the pavement ends at 10.25 miles) to an information kiosk. Stop and sign in. Your sign-in acknowledges that you understand the rules and regulations for visiting Sultan Basin, which is Everett's public water supply. Then proceed 500 feet farther to a Y intersection, where you will take the right-hand branch, following the signs to the trailhead for the hike.


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Spada Lake - Culmback Dam

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