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Middle Fork Snoqualmie River

Snoqualmie Region > North Bend Area
47.5480, -121.5384 Map & Directions
12.0 miles, roundtrip
Elevation Gain
1,650 feet
Highest Point
1,100 feet
Calculated Difficulty About Calculated Difficulty
Middle Fork Snoqualmie River trail. Nathaniel Sundberg. Full-size image
  • Mountain views
  • Wildlife
  • Waterfalls
  • Old growth
  • Good for kids
  • Dogs allowed on leash
  • Rivers

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

Northwest Forest Pass
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This long, meandering hike heads upstream along the Middle Fork of the Snoqualmie River, offering a long day hike, or a great beginning backpacking experience. Continue reading

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Hiking Middle Fork Snoqualmie River

Volunteers with Friends of the Trail, with help from the Middle Fork Coalition and the Forest Service cleaned up this part of the Middle Fork valley after it languished in a period of neglect, falling prey to littering and garbage dumping. Now hikers can enjoy peace and quiet on this gently graded trail just out of North Bend.

Crossing the Middle Fork Snoqualmie River on a bridge constructed by volunteers and the Forest Service, hikers are safely delivered to the other side of the Middle Fork Snoqualmie River. Before the early nineties, access to this side of the river required a ford that was dangerous even in low water.

Once across the bridge, hikers can turn right for the Pratt River Trail accessed via a connector trail built with the help of WTA volunteer crews. But a left turn to head upstream leads them deep into the quiet forest. The silence is broken only by the murmuring river, the whispering of wind through the trees, or birdsong from the fish-eating birds that live in the area.

The trail weaves in and out of the forest, passing under overhanging cliffs and offering views across the river of jagged Garfield Mountain. Continue under a craggy wall dubbed Stegosaurus Butte at 0.75 miles. Soon after the Butte the trail widens, thanks to an old railroad path. This is your only hint of the area's history of logging - the railway was used to pull logs out after timber harvests.

Continue on, crossing many creek drainages that keep the trail wet much of the year. The trail stays close to the river, at points even threatening to slump into the water due to repeated flooding that erodes the banks of the river. At a little more than three miles, the trail has been rerouted further back through the forest. This repair was made by WTA, after the flooding river completely washed away the trail in this area.

Cross a small bridge before ascending up to the junction to the Dingford Creek trailhead. On the way, look left for riverside campsites accessed via a short, signed path. At 5.8 miles, a large bridge leads to the parking area for Dingford Creek.

Pause on the bridge deck to watch the flow of the river below you. Most day hikers will be content to enjoy lunch here before turning around to head back to your car. Backpackers, however, can continue up the valley into the Alpine Lakes Wilderness.

WTA Pro Tip: This trail is open to mountain bikes on odd-numbered calendar days between June 1 and October 31. Be aware that this is a multi-use trail and please observe proper trail etiquette.

Toilet Information

  • Toilet at trailhead

More information about toilets

WTA worked here in 2022, 2021, 2020, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012 and 2011!

Hike Description Written by
Anna Roth, WTA Staff

Middle Fork Snoqualmie River

Map & Directions

Co-ordinates: 47.5480, -121.5384 Open in Google Maps

Before You Go

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Parking Pass/Entry Fee

Northwest Forest Pass

WTA Pro Tip: Save a copy of our directions before you leave! App-based driving directions aren't always accurate and data connections may be unreliable as you drive to the trailhead.

Getting There

From Seattle, drive east on I-90 to exit 34 (Edgewick Road). Turn left (north) onto 468th Avenue and follow it to the junction with the Middle Fork Road (Forest Road 56). Turn right and continue up the Middle Fork Road (turning right at the fork) for 11.8 miles to the Middle Fork trailhead parking area on the right. Cross the river on the impressively large metal and wood footbridge.

More Hike Details


Snoqualmie Region > North Bend Area

Middle Fork Snoqualmie River (#1003)

Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest, Snoqualmie Ranger District

Guidebooks & Maps

Day Hiking: Snoqualmie Region (Nelson - Mountaineers Books)

Buy the Green Trails Mount Si No. 174 map

Buy the Green Trails Skykomish No. 175 map

Download a map to plan your hike

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Middle Fork Snoqualmie River

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