North Creek Trail #413

The right fork at Gilbert Trailhead is the North Creek Trail.  At about 1 mile, the trail follows North Creek; at 1.5 miles you enter the Lake Chelan-Sawtooth Wilderness.  The first two miles are in burn from the 2018 Gilbert fire before entering more forested areas of Ponderosa Pine and Douglas Fir.  The route crosses several avalanche paths and sub-alpine forest before arriving at North Lake.

At a Glance

Current Conditions: For current road, trail or campground conditions go to:
Reservations: No reservations required.
Area Amenities: Interpretive Site, Fee charged for some activities, Picnic tables, Toilets, Parking
Fees: Recreation Pass required. ($5.00 day pass available for purchase at trailhead.)
Open Season: July
Best Season: August
Busiest Season: August
Restrictions: Wilderness regulations apply. Certified weed free hay is required for stock on National forest land.
Closest Towns: Twisp, WA
Water: No potable water
Restroom: At trailhead only
Passes: A valid Recreation Pass is required at trailhead. ($5/vehicle/day Northwest Forest Pass can be purchased from a self-pay station provided at the trailhead).
Operated By: Forest Service
Information Center: Methow Valley Ranger District

General Information


From Twisp take the Okanogan County Road 9114 (Twisp River Road) west for 11 miles, then road becomes forest service road #44, continue west on Forest Service Roads 44 and continues straight onto gravel forest service road 4440 for 13.6 miles to Forest Service Road 4440-457 to the Gilbert Trailhead (giving access to Twisp Pass Trail 432, Copper Pass Trail 426 and North Creek Trail 413).


Lake and Pond Fishing

Lake fishing at North Lake.

General Info:


Access roads become groomed snowmobile routes, closed to motorized wheeled vehicles December through March. 

Day Hiking

See additional information under Backpacking.


The open meadows provide good views of Abernathy Ridge and across the Twisp River to the Sawtooth Range. The wildflowers put on an amazing display during July in these meadows. At about 3.25 miles an un-maintained trail on the right, the Abernathy Pass Trail, takes you to over 7000' and continues into Cedar Creek. The lake is in a beautiful sculpted glacial basin on the north side of Gilbert Mountain. Specific Difficulties: At about 1.75 miles, an avalanche chute crosses the trail, which may hold snow into July, use caution when crossing this hazard. The basin above the lake may have mining activity. If exploring this basin be aware of vertical shafts and loose rock. There is no bridge over North Creek and may be difficult to cross at high water.

Horse Riding

See additional information under Backpacking.


Interpretive Site: Informative interpretive signs
Picnic tables: day use picnic tables
Fee charged for some activities: self-pay stations available for required recreation pass
Parking: Good parking area
Toilets: vault toilet