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Maintenance Shed Road

South Cascades

Location

South Cascades -- White Pass/Cowlitz River Valley
View map below

Length

7.0 miles, roundtrip

Elevation

Gain: 400 ft.
Highest Point: 4700 ft.

Rating

2.33 out of 5

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Parking Pass/Entry Fee

None
 
 

Here is an easy snowshoe on a wide U.S. Forest Service road with spectacular views of Chimney Rock, Coyote Ridge and, at the end, Mount Rainier.

This snowshoe near White Pass follows Forest Service Road 1284. Closed to snowmobiles, it winds around the south slopes of Cortright Point to its end above the Clear Fork of the Cowlitz. The relatively low grade makes this a pleasant winter outing for all abilities.

From the parking area just off U.S. Highway 12 near the large WSDOT snowplow facilities (hence the name Maintenance Shed Road), the road climbs moderately through fir and hemlock forest for about 0.75 mile to a small, steep clearcut on the right, popular with snow tubers. The road then curves back on itself through a small drainage and continues through forest on a mostly level track 0.75 mile to another clearcut and grand views of the snow-covered cliffs of Chimney Rock and Coyote Ridge, a northern extension of the Goat Rocks.

Next, the road bends right and traverses above Millridge Creek though forest and clearcuts, with ever-expanding views up the valley of the Clear Fork and Coyote Ridge to the main body of the Goat Rocks. After another mile the road bends right again, crosses the Sand Lake Trail and ends in a large clearcut with views of Coyote Ridge, the Goat Rocks and, straight ahead, Mount Rainier in all its glory. This makes a good turnaround spot for stomping out a seat for lunch and enjoying the views.

WTA Pro Tip: White Pass on Hwy 12 can be closed at times. Check road conditions before heading out at wsdot.com/traffic/passes.

 

Maintenance Shed Road

Map & Directions

Trailhead
Co-ordinates: 46.6343, -121.4036 Open map in new window

Trailhead

South Cascades -- White Pass/Cowlitz River Valley

Gifford Pinchot National Forest, Cowlitz Valley Ranger District

See weather forecast

Guidebooks & Maps

Green Trails 303 White Pass

Getting There

Drive U.S. Highway 12 to 1 mile west of White Pass. Look for a sign marking Forest Service Road 1284 on the north side of the road.

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

None
 

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Maintenance Shed Road

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