Palouse to Cascades Trail


Day Hike - Snoqualmie Tunnel

Hike east to west through the historic Snoqualmie Tunnel that was built for the Milwaukee Road Railroad line that was discontinued over 50 years ago, on a one-way hike ending at the Annette Lake trailhead.

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  • Easy
  • Easy
  • Mileage: 4.7 mi
  • High Point Elevation: 2,600 ft
  • Pace: 2.0 mph

Meet at 10 AM at the Annette Lake trailhead, reached by taking Exit 47 from I-90, turning right at the end of the exit ramp, left at the T junction and continuing to the end of the road, where the Annette Lake parking lot is on the right.  Each car parked there must display a Northwest Forest Pass or National Park Pass.  There is a restroom there.

We will leave half our cars at the Annette Lake trailhead parking lot and ride in the other cars the short distance to the Hyak parking lot, reached by heading east on I-90, taking Exit 54, turning right at the end of the exit, left at the first junction, and then two right turns, following signs to the Hyak parking lot.  Cars parked there must display the Discover Pass.  Restrooms are located there.  Our hiking route heads right from the parking lot on the former railroad bed, curving to the left to reach the tunnel entrance.

IMPORTANT:  The tunnel is about 40 degrees inside at all times and has no lighting.  The hiking surface is irregular and bicyclists sometimes whiz by.  So all hikers need to wear warm clothing with reflective features and carry a strong light while in the tunnel.  That will keep you warm and safe and allow you to easily see where you are stepping in the tunnel.  The tunnel is 2.3 miles long, so it will take about an hour to hike through it.  

Our lunch will be at a picnic table with a view at the west portal of the tunnel, with a restroom nearby.  Our hike from there to the Annette Lake trailhead will be about the same distance as the morning hike, but downhill.  After reaching the Annette Lake parking lot, we will ride in the cars parked there back to the Hyak  parking lot to retrieve the cars left there.

On the drive home, there will be an optional refreshment stop at iconic Twede's Restaurant  in North Bend, where milkshakes are served with the can.




Palouse to Cascades Trail

  • Green Trails Rattlesnake Mtn No. 205S

    Green Trails Snoqualmie Pass Gateway No. 207S

    Green Trails Mount Si NRCA No. 206S
  • See full route/place details.
Required Equipment

Required Equipment

The Ten Essentials

  1. Navigation
  2. Sun protection
  3. Insulation (extra clothing)
  4. Illumination
  5. First aid supplies
  6. Fire
  7. Repair kit and tools, including knife
  8. Nutrition (extra food)
  9. Hydration (extra water)
  10. Emergency shelter
Trip Reports