Wild Sky Wilderness

  

Wild Sky Wilderness

Wild Sky Wilderness is the newest addition to a 2.6 million acre wilderness complex that straddles the rugged Cascade Range from Canada to Snoqualmie Pass.  From the North Fork Skykomish River near the town of Index, the terrain rises from about 600 feet above sea level to over 6,000 feet on Gunn Peak. Annual precipitation is between 150 to 200 inches, most of it coming as snow. Runoff feeds streams that drop into the deep valleys below. Find Douglas fir, western red cedar and western hemlock at higher elevations; silver fir and mountain hemlock at lower elevations. Ice patches permanently cover the north and east slopes of Merchant, Gunn and Spire peaks. Trails in this part of the wilderness are few and cross-country travel maybe difficult.

East of Beckler River and the Straight Creek Fault the terrain becomes more uniform and gentle enough to support large meadows. Meadow Creek, West Cady Creek and Johnson Ridge trails lead through forests into flowery meadows. Several trails are open for stock animals with loop trips passing through the Henry M. Jackson Wilderness to the Pacific Crest Trail.

Evergreen Mountain Lookout is a rental cabin that continues to operate within the wilderness. At 5,587 feet, it provides a spectacular perch to watch the sunset over the rough peaks of Wild Sky and offers panoramic view from Glacier Peak to Mt. Rainier.

West Cady Ridge Trail leads through old growth Douglas fir, hemlock and western red cedar, which provide habitat for a variety of birds and animals.

Logging began around 1920 and continued into the early 1990's. Signs of past mining exploration can be seen in the Silver Creek area.  About a dozen mountain lakes attract anglers. Lake Isabel is the largest of these at about 1.5 miles long and 200 feet deep. The historic use of float planes is allowed to continue on the lake.

Congress designated the Wild Sky Wilderness in 2008 and it now totals 106,577 acres in the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest. Wild Sky Wilderness borders Henry M. Jackson Wilderness to the northeast.

Help protect your wilderness by following wilderness regulations and using Leave No Trace principles.


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At a Glance

Current Conditions: Current conditions information
Restrictions: Wilderness regulations apply
  • Some trails closed to use by stock due to steep grades, inadequate design, lack of grazing or other factors. 
Closest Towns: Skykomish, Washington
Passes: Some trailheads require a valid recreation pass. Check our Recreation Passes and Permits page for details.
Operated By: Forest Service
Information Center: Skykomish Ranger District, (360) 677 2414

General Information

Directions:

Wild Sky Wilderness borders Henry M. Jackson Wilderness to the north and east. Access points are in the Skykomish, Washington area north of US Highway 2.

Topo Maps

Baring, Benchmark Mountain, Blanca Lake, Captain Point, Evergreen, Grotto, Index, Monte Cristo, Mount Stickney, Scenic, Skykomish. Download free U.S. Forest Service Topo maps.

Buy maps online

Go to the National Forest Store.

Wilderness.net

Go to Wilderness.net for online maps and other important Wilderness information.


General Notes:

Trails/Trailheads that access Wild Sky Wilderness

Wild Sky Wilderness Trail Plan and Map

  • The Wild Sky Wilderness Act which was enacted in May 2008 called for a Trail Plan to be established in consultation with interested parties for National Forest System lands within the Wild Sky Wilderness and adjacent areas. View the trail plan and map.

Activities


Fishing

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Hiking

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Horse Riding & Camping

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Areas & Activities

Highlights

Location

 
  Elevation : 
600' - 6000'