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Crowell Ridge

Eastern Washington

Location

Eastern Washington -- Selkirk Range
View map below

Length

8.4 miles, roundtrip

Elevation

Gain: 2700 ft.
Highest Point: 6880 ft.

Rating

3.67 out of 5

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WTA worked here: 2010
 

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

None
 
 

Crowell Ridge is visible from many valley roads but hikers rarely tread on it. Rough roads, steep trail, and sheer distance from city centers keeps this ridgeline lonely, but the expansive views to be had from the summit are worth the work. 

Like the Shedroof Divide trail in the west side of the Salmo-Priest Wilderness, Crowell Ridge offers views for days, once you get to them. There are two trailheads, but since the access via Bear Pasture trailhead is only open May - August, directions here are for the Sullivan Mountain Trailhead. 

Leave the trailhead and weave through open lodgepole pine forest before these trees thin out, and you move into an open, rocky field populated with low brush and some dead trees. Views here are expansive. Take a break and get some photos or take a rest and enjoy. 

A mile from the trailhead, buckle up for the next mile of climbing. You're heading to a high point of 6740 feet and then reversing direction, heading downhill. You'll never quite make it to the top of the ridge in this section, but views are still excellent. 

3.9 miles from the trailhead, encounter a junction with the North Fork Sullivan Creek trail, which heads off to the left and descends towards the creek. WTA crews have worked here in past years, so access from this, as well as the Red Bluff trail are also viable options for getting to Crowell Ridge. 

But you'll continue straight, eventually bearing right and following the ridge around the east side of a small rocky knob. Views from here are excellent, and a nearby junction for Bear Pasture points the way down to the other trailhead, should you be doing a thru-hike. (It's 7.8 miles one-way, from trailhead to trailhead).

For a better vantage point, backtrack to the split with the North Fork Sullivan Trail, and head up the ridgeline in front of you. Its less than half a mile to the site of a former fire lookout, where you can stop, soak in the surroundings (and the silence) before returning from whence you came. 

WTA Pro Tip: Because most of the trail is on open ridgeline, be sure to have clothes for when and if the weather turns. It can happen fast up here, and you don't want to get caught out. 

 

Crowell Ridge

Map & Directions

Trailhead
Co-ordinates: 48.8783, -117.2448 Open map in new window

Trailhead

Eastern Washington -- Selkirk Range

Crowell Ridge (#515)

Colville National Forest, Sullivan Lake Ranger District

See weather forecast

Guidebooks & Maps

Day Hiking: Eastern Washington (Romano and Theisen - Mountaineers Books)

USGS Gypsy Peak

Colville National Forest map

Getting There

For the Sullivan Mountain trailhead, drive north from Metaline Falls for 2 miles on Highway 31 and turn right on Sullivan Lake Road (County Road 9345). Proceed down this road for 4.3 miles and turn left on Highline Road (FR 2212). Continue about 3 miles, then turn left on Forest Road 245 toward the Sullivan Mountain Lookout. At this point, a high clearance vehicle is recommended to complete the drive. The trailhead is on the north side of the road near the switchback below the lookout, at elevation 6220 feet.

For the Bear Pasture trailhead, head northeast out of Metaline Falls on Grandview Street toward International Selkirk Loop N/Lehigh Ave. Turn right onto Highway 31 North (also the International Selkirk Loop N or Lehigh Ave) and continue for 2.1 miles.

Turn right onto Sullivan Lake Rd continue for 4.8 miles. Turn left onto Forest Road 22 (Sullivan Creek Road) and continue for 5.3 miles. Make a slight left onto NF-2220 (Sullivan Creek Road) and continue for 2.2 miles. Turn left onto NF-2212 continue for 4.4 miles. Turn right onto NF-200 continue for 6.5 miles, and your destination will be on the right. 
** Note that this access road is only open from May 15 to August 15, and is not recommended for horse trailers.**

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

None
 

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Crowell Ridge

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