North Cascades National Park

Year Established: 1968
Annual Visitors: 18,000
Size: 505,000 Acres
State: Washington

Best Time to Visit North Cascades National Park

June to October

If you are planning to visit more national parks, check out our complete list of all US National Parks.

Best Experiences in North Cascades National Park

  • North Cascades Scenic Highway
  • Hike Trappers Peak
  • Hike Cascade Pass

A Brief History

You can find North Cascades National Park in the north part of Washington State. It’s a huge wilderness area with a lot of trees, lakes, and glaciers. Along the North Cascades Highway, there are lookouts and trails, like the steep Thunder Creek Trail. Boats dot Ross Lake. At the northern end of deep Lake Chelan is the small town of Stehekin. There are more than 200 kinds of birds and grizzly bears and gray wolves in the park.

North Cascades RV Camping

If you are looking for nearby RV camping options for North Cascades National Park or in Washington, consider checking out our other post:

Visitor Information


There is no fee to enter North Cascades National Park.

America The Beautiful Annual Park Pass

You can also get an annual park pass to ALL National Parks in the United States for $80.
Keep in mind they have Senior, Military, and other discounts available!

Contacting North Cascades National Park

Visitor Centers

North Cascades Visitor Center

You can find North Cascades Visitor center near milepost 120 on the North Cascades Highway (State Route 20) and the town of Newhalem. The Newhalem Creek Campground is closeby. There is a relief map of the park and the area around it, as well as an exhibit room with video displays about the natural and cultural history of the park. You can also find a theater with a large format slide show and a video presentation. There are several short interpretive trails and bathrooms and of course an information desk and bookstore to get some souvenirs!


Across the Skagit River from the North Cascades Highway (State Route 20) near milepost 120 and the town of Newhalem. Adjacent to Newhalem Creek Campground.

Phone Number

206-386-4495 ext.11

Hours of Operation

  • Sunday 9:00 AM–5:00 PM
  • Monday 9:00 AM–5:00 PM
  • Tuesday 9:00 AM–5:00 PM
  • Wednesday 9:00 AM–5:00 PM
  • Thursday 9:00 AM–5:00 PM
  • Friday 9:00 AM–5:00 PM
  • Saturday 9:00 AM–5:00 PM

Be sure to check for seasonal closures.

Golden West Visitor Center

During the busier summer months of June through September, the visitor center is open every day.

During the slower winter months, from November to May, the Golden West is only open sometimes.

Since there are no roads in or out of the Golden West/Stehekin area, most people get there by boat, seaplane, or on foot. Hikers walk to Stehekin from the many trails that lead to it. During the busy summer months, there are a lot of activities, events, and shows at the Golden West. The Visitor Center has a small gift shop, a bookstore, and information about the natural and cultural history of the area. There is also an art gallery and up-to-date information about the trails. Rainbow Falls is 312 feet (95 meters) tall. During the summer, Park Service employees give naturalist talks, evening presentations, and interpretive tours.


Golden West Visitor Center,
Stehekin, WA 98852

Phone Number

509-699-2080 ext. 14

Hours of Operation (On and off closures during winter)

  • Sunday 12:00 PM–4:00 PM
  • Monday 12:00 PM–4:00 PM
  • Tuesday 12:00 PM–4:00 PM
  • Wednesday 12:00 PM–4:00 PM
  • Thursday 12:00 PM–4:00 PM
  • Friday 12:00 PM–4:00 PM
  • Saturday 12:00 PM–4:00 PM

Be sure to check for seasonal closures.