Sauk Mountain is located in Skagit County, along the western foothills of the North Cascades range. There is a trail to the top, one of the most popular trails in the Skagit Valley. There are several good reasons for this: it is usually open from May until November; it is a short trail, less than 2 miles long with an elevation gain of about 1,000 feet yet boasts 360 panoramic views of the North Cascades and Skagit Valley, and lastly it’s easy to get to!
Getting to the Sauk Mountain Trail
From Sedro-Woolley, follow State Route 20 (North Cascades Highway) east for 32 miles. At milepost 96, near the boundary of Rockport State Park, turn left on the Sauk Mountain Road (FS road 1030) (if you pass through Rockport and the gas station, you’ve gone too far) and go seven miles to the junction of FS road 1036. Turn right on FS road 1036 and follow to the road’s end.
Hiking the Sauk Mountain Trail
From the parking area the trail immediately starts a series of 20 switch backs up the south facing slope, gaining about 600 feet in elevation. Views open up fast and, depending upon the month you are usually graced with an abundance of wildflowers along the trail. At the top of the switchbacks the trail swings around the hill and comes to a flat spot by a nice grove of trees. If you’re camping this is the best spot. Continuing along the north side of the ridge the trail now scrambles up the jumbled summit to views of Mount Baker to the west and the Skagit Valley all around. This site once hosted a fire lookout, removed by the Forest Service in the 1980s.
Photo Tours of Sauk Mountain and the North Cascades are available here. Let us customize the perfect Photo Tour for your group!
Views from the Sauk Mountain Trail
Any time of year will get you great views. try hiking the trail early or later in the day. Sunrise and sunsets from the top are particularly stunning!
In July and August wildflowers abound; paintbrush, phlox, tiger lilies, aster, columbine, lupine columbine are but a few of a myriad of colorful flowers you will find along the way.