Intermediate Snowshoe - Commonwealth Basin


Intermediate Snowshoe - Commonwealth Basin

Strenuous snowshoe trip to Red Pass at the back end of Commonwealth Basin at Snoqualmie Pass

  • Easy+
  • Challenging
  • Mileage: 5.0 mi
  • Elevation Gain: 900 ft

Meet at the Issaquah Transit Center parking garage NE corner at 7:00 AM

Orginally planned for Red Pass.  Changed to just the Basin due to avy danger and slow heavy snow.

Original posting:


This is a "Strenuous" backcountry snowshoe trip. Prerequisite is completion of one of these courses: Backcountry Snowshoeing, Scrambling, Basic Climbing, Backcountry Skiing.

Red Pass is at the north end of the Commonwealth basin between Lundin Peak and Red Mountain. The photo above is of Red Mountain. The route to Red Pass comes from the right side of the photo and over to the left just out of frame. This map is centered on the 5400’ pass.

There is a summer trail all the way to the pass, but in the winter it is a fairly steep climb up forested and open slopes. Passing right below the 38 degree open slopes of Red Mountain, our route is exceptionally exposed to avalanche danger. We will only go here if NWAC rates the above timberline avalanche risk as low or moderate on west or south facing aspects. If the rating is “considerable”, we will still go up in to Commonwealth basin, but instead head south toward Kendall Peak Lakes. If the rating is “high”, we will still go up to Commonwealth basin, but just make a big snow-slogging loop around the basin.

NOTE: In the event of forecasted steady rain below 4000', this trip will likely be changed to an umbrella hike on Tiger Mountain.


Commonwealth Basin

Required Equipment

Required Equipment

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