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Iron Horse Trail: Washington Creek

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The Iron Horse Trail runs down the middle of the linear John Wayne State Park. The trail utilizes the old rail line known as the Milwaukee Road, which carried locomotives of the Chicago-Milwaukee-St. Paul-Pacific Railroad. The trail runs from Rattlesnake Lake to Idaho and is the only east-west cross-state trail.

From Rattlesnake Lake start up the old rail-trail as it crosses Boxley Creek and heads east along the northern flank of Cedar Butte. The trail is relatively flat and wide enough for a family of four to walk side by side. Take your time and enjoy the walk along this historic route.

At 4 1/2 miles out, you'll find yourself on a towering trestle spanning the deep cut of Change Creek, and in another 1/4 mile another one crossing Hall Creek. These massive wooden structures offer those with acrophobia a chance to experience their fear, while the rest of you can experience the stunning views out over the lower South Fork Snoqualmie Valley and its intersection with the broad Middle Fork Valley. Mount Si and Mailbox Peaks stand tall to the north, marking the west and east flanks of the Middle Fork Valley.
Driving Directions:

From Seattle drive east on I-90 to exit 32 (436th Avenue SE). Turn right (south) on 436th Avenue SE (Cedar Falls Road SE) and drive about 4.5 miles, passing the Rattlesnake Lake parking area, until you find the Iron Horse Trailhead parking area on the left.

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Recent Trip Reports

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There are 30 trip reports for this hike. See all trip reports for this hike.
Twin Falls, Iron Horse Trail: Washington Creek — Mar 30, 2014 — Spaceboy
Day hike
Issues: Blowdowns | Mud/Rockslide
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We tried to combine Twin Falls with the Iron Horse Trail today. The Twin Falls trail is "closed" be...
We tried to combine Twin Falls with the Iron Horse Trail today. The Twin Falls trail is "closed" because of a landslide, from the Twin Falls trailhead. We drove to the Homestead Valley Trailhead just off exit 38 and started there. Short trip down to the Falls, trail in great shape. The landslide put out some railing on the lower falls observation deck. The hillside probably isn't stable with all the rain lately, but people were going down there anyway (as well as hiking through from the TF trailhead).

We hiked back up to the John Wayne Pioneer Trail, which is the old railroad grade, to try and see the trestles, but we stopped at the one over Boetzke Creek. There was a really good waterfall there. Headed back under a sunny sky. 3 hours slow walking.

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Iron Horse Trail: Washington Creek — Jan 04, 2014 — Eric Jain
Day hike
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Started at the Mt Washington trailhead around 2pm and followed the Iron Horse Trail up to the juncti...
Started at the Mt Washington trailhead around 2pm and followed the Iron Horse Trail up to the junction with the Cedar Butte Trail. Side trip down to the Twin Falls on the way back.

Saw few people, though the parking lot was busy. Wish I had a bike for this trail.

Photos: http://picasaweb.google.com/[…]/IronHorseTrailJanuary2014
Tracklog: http://runkeeper.com/user/ejain/activity/287426222
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Iron Horse Trail: Washington Creek — Dec 28, 2013 — Sam
Day hike
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It is winter and decided to walk on a flat trail for 15 miles. It is not exciting (however it is the...
It is winter and decided to walk on a flat trail for 15 miles. It is not exciting (however it is the most comfortable trail I had) but we always find beauty and ended happy. Next time I would bike. I would like to know what were the goals of building a railroad all the way to Chicago. Any comment?
Be aware that if you want to visit the stunning massive structure of segments of the railroad it takes 6.5 miles from the parking lot across the Rattlesnake Lake parking. And not 3 miles from the TH (N 47 26.007, W -121 46.052) of Cedar Butte/Iron Horse as mentioned on Nelson's Snoqualmie Region (Day Hiking).
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Twin Falls, Iron Horse Trail: Washington Creek — Nov 17, 2013 — Zak
Day hike
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There were tiny snow patches in the woods from just above Twin Falls to Iron Horse, but none on the ...
There were tiny snow patches in the woods from just above Twin Falls to Iron Horse, but none on the trail. The trail was wet in places, but still in good condition.

We had a fantastic time on our trail run from Twin Falls up to the Iron Horse Trail, right (west), then out to Rattlesnake Lake and back. 14 miler. It was cool to see snow, and great that it wasn't on the trail. Happy hiking!
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Iron Horse Trail: Washington Creek — Aug 11, 2013 — lefitz
Day hike
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Wish I would have read the trip reports more closely because, indeed, the mileage to a "towering tre...
Wish I would have read the trip reports more closely because, indeed, the mileage to a "towering trestle" is NOT at 4.5 miles! I read later it's around 8 miles from the Cedar Falls Trailhead.
This trail is better suited for mountain biking; it's quite boring if you're walking. UNLESS you're anticipating a massive trestle will just be around the corner. Or the next...
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Iron Horse near Rattlesnake Alan Bauer sm.jpg
Iron Horse Trail. Photo copyright Alan Bauer.
Location
Iron Horse Trail (#)
Snoqualmie Pass -- North Bend Area
Washington State Parks
Statistics
Roundtrip 9.0 miles
Elevation Gain 300 ft
Highest Point 1100 ft
User info
Good for kids
Dogs allowed on leash
Discover Pass required
Guidebooks & Maps
Day Hiking: Snoqualmie Pass (Nelson & Bauer - Mountaineers Books)
Green Trails Rattlesnake Mountain/Upper Snoqualmie Valley No. 205S and Snoqualmie Pass No. 207

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Note: the description and driving directions for this Mountaineers Books entry are copyrighted and can't be changed.

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