[pct-l] Stehekin Fire Detour

Bud bud.betz at comcast.net
Sat Aug 8 20:01:07 CDT 2015


I’ve looked at the “official” detour and perhaps there is a better path. At about 37 miles north of Stevens Pass, there is a trail junction with North Fork Sauk Trail (Trail No 649) near the Mackinaw Shelter. From the junction, it’s about 8.5 miles to the trail head (TH), about 6.5 miles from the TH to the main road (FS Road 49/Sloan Creek/North Fork Sauk Rd), and about 20 miles to Darrington WA via the Mountain Loop Highway. If you were to continue up the PCT for another 35 or so miles, you’ll get to the “official” detour at the Suiattle River Trail (#784) and then hike about another 30 miles to Highway 530 (7 to the TH and 23 to the highway) where you’ll go North to Rockport or South to Darrington (best bet).  NFS website says trail 649 North Fork Sauk Trail is cleared for stock from the PCT to the TH.

There are stores (grocery, convenience, hardware, etc) in Darrington for decent resupply and lodging/camping available. This route will give you better support than following the “official route” and exiting the trail on the highway with little resupply opportunity at Rockport, a little better in Marblemount, and little less in Newhalem. Next town/community past Newhalem is Mazama (about 10 miles East of Rainey Pass and no Post Office and one C-store). Check out this link to the community of Darrington, WA: http://www.darringtonwatourism.com

Post office in Darrington is open M-F 8:30-4:15 and closed Sat/Sun. Other Post Offices at Rockport (M-F 7:30-12 & 12:30-3:30, Sat 8-9), Marblemount (M-F 7:30-11:30 & 12-3:30, Closed Sat/Sun), no PO in Newhalem. Lodging/camping is also available in Rockport, Marblemount, and Newhalem. Haven’t been able to contact Darrington PO but will Monday and post an update.

No trails to hike/walk between Darrington and Rainey Pass. It’s all two lane highway with decent traffic this time of year. PCT Hikers are not common on this section of the road so can’t vouch for hitching a ride to Rainey Pass. Possible trail over Cascade Pass may get you close to Stehekin if it isn’t closed due to the Goode Fire, but thats still a road trip to Marble Mount and some side roads to the TH. 

Hope this helps out. Sucks the fires have the PCT closed. Big detour to get around it with no trail opportunity due to the fire danger and location.


Message: 5
Date: Fri, 7 Aug 2015 07:58:39 -0700
From: River Malcolm <river at orcasonline.com>
To: "pct-l at backcountry.net" <pct-l at backcountry.net>
Subject: [pct-l] Stehekin detour Resupply question
Message-ID: <2387FF24-04D6-42D1-B280-A60191FE3307 at orcasonline.com>
Content-Type: text/plain;	charset=us-ascii

First my apologies if this has been addressed already. I have not been able to read the listserve regularly from the trail. 

I understand the current detour --Suiattle River Trail to Rainy Pass via Suiattle River Rd 26, star route 530, and Hway 20 -- involves no access to Stehekin (or Holden). 

Has anyone figured out somewhere to mail a resupply box that would previously have gone to Stehekin?  Also, does anyone have an estimate of the number of miles added by the detour ( for figuring how much food to send to Skyhomish and to the Stehekin-substitute, if there is one)?

Many thanks for ANY advice and guidance you can provide. 

Happy trails

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