The current weather in Skykomish can be found here.
Check the Skykomish Airport webcam
for a good idea of what the weather is like at the cabin and
if there is snow.
Elevation at Tye River Cabin located just 2 miles past Skykomish,
WA is at approx 1030 feet. Winter Temperatures range from
31-52 F. The power occasionally goes off in the winter. There
is always plenty of wood to keep warm with the wood stove
and there are lanterns, flashlights and candles that you can
light. You can always barbecue in the snow if you are feeling
ambitious. There is usually snow from November through April
at Stevens Pass, but of course every year is different. Stevens
Pass will open as early as it can for skiing and then closes
on April 16th.
Summer Temperatures range from 43-75 F. Fall begins in late
August. September and October are beautiful for fall hikes
and the rain usually comes in November. In the summer it gets
very hot and Stevens Pass is a popular destination for a day
trip. It is not uncommon to have lots of traffic delays on
Hwy 2 on the weekends. This can also happen in the winter
if there is an avalanche and Interstate 90 is closed.
There is usually snow at the cabin when the weather forecast
says there is snow at 1000 feet.The weather can change very
quickly in the mountains, it is not uncommon to wake up with
a fresh blanket of 8-10 inches. Hwy 2 is plowed and Tye River
Road is plowed. Please make sure that you parallel park in
front of the gate if you can’t get in the driveway so
the snowplows can still clear the road. Traction tires and
chains are often required to drive up to Stevens Pass and
over the pass to Leavenworth. You can check out the driving
conditions at the Department of Transportation site.
Here is a link to the Stevens Pass webcam.
You can also get a road report by calling 800-695-7623. Here
is a link
to the National Weather Service.
NEARBY TOWNS, DINING & ATTRACTIONS
The drive to the cabin from Seattle is full of small historic
towns with antique, art shops, eclectic homes and dining.
There are lots of historical attractions to stop and look
at that relate to the railroad, logging and mining industry.
Just past Monroe on Highway 2 you will drive through the town
with its cute antique stores. The Bakery is a great place
to stop for breakfast, lunch or a pastry. The Dutch Cup also
serves breakfast, lunch and dinner.
For an interesting adventure, check out the reptile man. You
will see the signs easily from the road. The Serpentarium
is located 1 mile east of Monroe on Hwy 2 and has the most
extensive collection of reptiles in the Pacific Northwest
and is the home of the worlds 10 deadliest snakes! The reptile
man also has the only albino alligator in the Pacific Northwest.
Start-Up and Gold
Bar are other towns you will drive through, named after
the historic mining that once took place here.
The Sky River Tavern in Start-up is a great place to stop
for a beer and enjoy some local culture. Try your hand at
pull tabs and Helene and Shelby are always eager to cook you
up a great burger and some greasy onion rings. In the summer
there is nice outdoor seating out back. The Booby Trap, also
in Start-Up often has bands on the weekend and is fun hangout.
The Prospector Steak & Ale House in Gold Bar has great
steaks, lobster and burgers as well as a full bar. It is also
a restaurant so kids are welcome. Look for the Wagon Wheel
and Trail Décor on the outside to spot it. http://www.chowbaby.com/restaurants/seattle/Gold%20Bar
Zeeks is great side of the road pit stop. It is a good place
to stop if there is traffic on the way home. It also has bathrooms.
I think it is only open seasonally. There are a few other
places to eat and espresso stands but we have not tried them
all yet. There is also a small market in Start-Up.
Gold Bar is the last grocery store that you will pass by on
the way to the cabin. Make sure you are stocked up on food,
beer and firewood as this will be your last opportunity. Keep
your eye open for other places along the way that are selling
cheap firewood. Also make sure there is not burn ban in effect
if you plan to have a bonfire. There is a small deli &
liquor store in Skykomish but it only has the basics and has
The tiny town of Index
is a popular spot for rock climbing. It offers scenic views
of Mt. Index which rises over 5,000 feet above the Sykomish
Rver. The Index Café off of Hwy 2 is a great place
to stop for a burger or pie. There are great scenic hikes
Skykomish is the classic ski town
where the locals who work at the ski
resort live and hang out and affectionately call the town
town is full of history and has old railroad cars that you
tour. The town hosted the Artrain USA event this spring.
There is a
library, quilt store, vintage stove shop and a city hall.
attraction in town is the Whistling Post. Here you can talk
skiers and even participate in a raffle to guess the date
of the first
snowfall. The Whistling Post has food, beer and liquor.
It is the
closest bar to the cabin. This is where we like to hang
out when we have
Also in Skykomish is the Cascadia
Inn Café & Lounge. A great place for breakfast,
lunch or dinner if you don’t feel like cooking. It
is the closest restaurant to the cabin.
Here is a link to info
about the town of Skykomish as well as a great aerial photo.
& Last Chance Espresso is just 1/8th of a mile from
the cabin towards Skykomish. If you are really jones-ing
for a real latte (instead of the great cup of java you could
make yourself at the cabin) head over to see Cynthia and
she will make you a great latte complete with chocolate
covered espresso beans on top. She also has lots of eclectic
things for sale and a house full of talking parrots. This
is the closest place to get a latte to the cabin.
If you are heading up skiing, Stevens Pass has hot food
& bar service available during normal ski season pass
Leavenworth is wonderful. It is a perfect day trip and
approximately 40 minutes from the cabin over the pass. It
is a Bavarian theme town and has an event practically every
weekend of the year. It is very hot in the summer and there
are great places to drink beer and eat pretzels and shop
to your hearts content. In the winter it is a magical winter
wonderland and the whole town is lit up with Christmas lights.
There are lots of things to do and much recreation nearby.
There is a miniature golf course in town and horseback riding
and rafting nearby. Drive down the Icicle River Road for
the trailhead to hikes up to the Alpine Wilderness or have
a picnic beside the river. Make sure you bring plenty of
water for the trip as it gets very hot. Also the weather
can change very quickly so make sure you have jacket.
Winter is wonderful in the cascades and
there are so many things to do. It is always fun to wake
up to a fresh blanket of snow on the ground.
Skiing & Snow Shoeing
Of course skiing is one of the main attractions in the winter.
Stevens Pass is 13 miles from the cabin. Drive carefully
and make sure you have 4 wheel drive or chains. If it is
snowing and chains or traction tires are required, you will
get pulled over by the state patrol and they will make you
turn around if you don’t have chains. You can pick
up chains at Les Schwab and keep them in your trunk. If
you don’t end up using them they can be returned at
the end of winter. Also make sure you keep an eye on how
much it is snowing during the day because driving down the
mountain in the dark after a day of skiing can be a slow
trip home. Drive slowly as there are often accidents and
Pass is one of the Northwest's premier resorts offering
10 lifts, over 1,125 acres of skiable terrain, and 37 primary
runs. Cross-Country and night skiing are also offered. Stevens
Pass Ski area is located on the crest of the Cascade Range.
It receives an average of 450 inches of snowfall each year.
The ski area still retains the charm and characteristics
that make it such a fabulous family area, but also contains
an abundance of terrain for more adventurous skiers. It
is situated at a base area elevation of 4,061. The Nordic
Center features 25 km of wide, groomed trails and offers
both traditional tracked trails and adjoining skating lanes
for different skiing styles and abilities. The center is
located five miles east of the Stevens Pass Ski Area on
Highway 2. 2006 was an unbelievable season as far as snowfall.
Keep your fingers crossed for this year!
Skiers and boarders who love adventure
and luxury--take note! Cascade Powder Cats is now just
north of Seattle and offers you the chance to rip it on
a minimum of 10,000 vertical feet (6 to 15 runs a day,
depending on which slopes they access). Not only that,
but they will transport you in one of their 10 person,
fully enclosed and heated Snow Cats. Enjoy the spectacular
view of the Cascade Mountains while you savor snacks,
beverages, and a gourmet lunch.
There are ski rentals available for skis and snowboards
at the pass and at the Nordic Center east of the pass. To
save money and time you can rent them ahead of time in Gold
Bar at The Hill Billies (360-793-0221). Info & trail
maps for cross country skiing call (360) 902-8552. Both
Stevens Pass Nordic Center (25k of groomed trails) 5 miles
east of Stevens Pass Ski Area (360) 973-2441 and Lake Wenatchee
State Park at Hwy 207 (509) 763-3101 have groomed trails.
They also run a nice guided snowshoe tours during the winter
on Saturdays and Sundays. It is on the website and usually
advertised in The Seattle Times.
Miller River Road, half-way between Baring & Skykomish,
is a good cross country skiing and snowshoeing destination
when the snow level is low (2,000ft). pass. The closest
snowmobile area is Foss River Road at the end of Tye River
Road but there are no rentals available.
Foss River Road (at the end of Tye River Road) is also a good place for cross
country skiing. The snowmobiles create a nice groomed trail. Watch out for cars
on the road as you ski.
You can call the ranger station for current trail info, trail passes and snow
conditions. Click here for their hours of operation.
The Skykomish River offers some of the most adventuresome
commercially guided white water rafting and kayaking in
Washington. There are several local companies that offer
professionally guided rafting adventures in the area such
Chinook Expeditions , and Osprey Rafting Company at
Osprey also has a school of kayaking. Alpine Adventures offers guided whitewater river rafting trips in Washington State . There is good info
There are class IV-V rapids, which thousands of rafters
and kayakers conquer yearly during the spring, early summer,
and fall. Spring and early summer are the best times for
rafting, as the water level is usually too low by mid to
late July, depending upon snow pack and current rainfall.
There are also gentle family floats on parts of the Skykomish
River. Make sure you scope the river before going by yourself
and check in with a rafting company as there are many dangerous
waterfalls that need to be avoided.
The Skykomish River offers great fishing for steelhead,
salmon, and trout most of the year. The best fishing months
are October - December. The Skykomish River splits just
below the town of Index. The main part of the river as well
as the North and South Forks offer good steelhead and trout
The fishing season is June 1-Nov. 30 for most game fish;
but due to the falls (Sunset, Canyon and Eagle) there is
limited fishing until the fish elevator goes into operation,
usually late July through October, bringing up steelhead
and spawning salmon (illegal to catch spawning salmon).
There is rainbow, cutthroat and bull trout in the river
system, and the best fishing is mid-July through October.
You can fish in the Tye River across the street from the
cabin. The best access is to walk or drive down Foss River
Road and find a quiet spot. Lake fishing opens the last
Saturday of April. A WA fishing license is required and
there are frequent rule changes. Contact Dept of Fish and
Wildlife for more information. Fishing licenses can be purchased
on-line, or in Monroe at Fred Meyer or at Sky Valley Traders
on Hwy 2. http://wdfw.wa.gov/
There is also Fishing at Reiter Ponds. 453 Reiter Road,
Gold Bar, WA 98251. 360-793-1423 or 360-793-0475.
Some of the best Washington hiking and mountain biking trails
are found in the foothills of the North Cascade Mountains.
Hiking is one of the more popular local activities and there
are dozens of close-by hiking trails to choose from ranging
from easy walks through the woods for the family to strenuous
climbs for the more athletic. You can hike to waterfalls,
trout lakes with crystal clear water surrounded by wildflowers,
historical lookout towers, old growth forests, and to spectacular
mountain top viewpoints. The normal hiking season is from
April through October, but even during the winter there
are some trails accessible. Hikes to higher elevations (above
4000ft) are usually snow-free by the end of July, but most
of the trails will be hiked long belong then by eager hikers
who pack the snow down. All trailheads can be reached by
2WD vehicles. There are trails
at the cabin in the binder that you can use to find a good
A moderately difficult 5-mile round-trip trail in Wallace
Falls State Park takes you to the beautiful waterfall visible
between Sultan and Goldbar. Hikeable year round. Elevation
gain is 1,200 ft.
Doolittle Park - Bicycling/Motorcycling
A well-maintained asphalt road takes you through several
miles of national forest along the North Fork Skykomish
River, contact the Skykomish Ranger Station (360-677-2414).
Abandoned logging roads make great mountain biking and 4-wheeling
Railroad History-Iron Goat Trail
For railroad buffs, the 7.8 mile Cascade Tunnel can be visited
on the way to Stevens Pass, and the wheelchair accessible
Iron Goat Trail retraces the path of the original railroad
grade, avalanche sheds and the original 3-mile Cascade Tunnel.
There is an interesting history of turn-of-the century mining
endeavors in this area, and some of the mines can still
For rock climbers there is the vertical 500 ft Index Town
Wall, featuring some of the most technical rock climbing
anywhere in the state. There is one 5.6 route on the Great
Northern Slab, and a handful of 5.7 and 5.8 routes as well.
The majority of the routes at Index are aid routes and steep
crack climbs. A few of the classic routes in the area include
a three star 5.9 route named Godzilla and Town Crier. http://www.climbingwashington.com/features/rcwindex.htm
Horses are available at Skyland Ranch in Gold Bar 360-793-2611.