North Cascades National Park Twisp Pass (Dagger Lake) Trail

Distance - one way

SR 20 to Twisp Pass: 7.6 miles (12.2 km)

Elevation gain

SR 20 to Fireweed Camps - 1000 ft (305 m) loss Fireweed Camps to Twisp Pass - 2400 ft (730 m) gain

Use

Hiker and stock

Difficulty

Moderate

Distance - one way

Twisp Pass via Twisp River Road (USFS): 4.7 miles (7.6 km)

Elevation gain

2464 ft (751 m) gain

Use

Hiker and stock

Difficulty

Moderate

Twisp Pass (Dagger Lake) Trail

The Dagger Lake Trail leads to a shallow lake set in a backdrop of peaks, and a 6064 foot (1850 m) pass with good views and excellent fall foliage colors. Day hikers approach from the east via US Forest Service trails, while the western approach is longer and usually requires backpacking. Stock parties can ride in from either direction. Fishing is popular. Hikers can explore the area around the pass, including deep and rocky Stiletto Lake to the north.

Special Concerns

  • Pets and hunting are not allowed in the national park.
  • Stiletto Lake is closed to stock use.
  • Mosquitos enjoy this area as much as humans. Bring repellent and long sleeves in bug season.

Backcountry Camping

A backcountry permit is required for all overnight stays. Permits are limited. There is both a hiker and a stock camp near the shores of Dagger Lake. Cross-country travel and camping are allowed at Stiletto Lake, at least one mile distant from Dagger Lake. Campfires are not allowed at Stiletto Lake--please help protect this lake basin by bringing a camp stove.

Access via State Route 20

Drive SR 20 to mile 159, just east of Rainy Pass. The parking lot is located on the north side of the highway. To access the trail, cross the highway and look for a short connector trail that takes you to the main trail, Bridge Creek (Pacific Crest) Trail. This is a USFS trailhead and parking requires a Northwest Forest Pass or federal recreation access pass, available at any ranger station.

Access via Twisp River Road

From the town of Twisp, follow the Twisp River Road almost to it's end, and park in the signed area 0.4 miles before Road's End Campground. A Northwest Forest Pass or federal recreation access pass is required to park, and is available at any ranger station.

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November's Featured Park
The North Cascades have long been known as the North American Alps. Characterized by rugged beauty, this steep mountain range is filled with jagged peaks, deep valleys, cascading waterfalls and glaciers. North Cascades National Park Service Complex contains the heart of this mountainous region in three park units which are all managed as one and include North Cascades National Park, Ross Lake and Lake Chelan National Recreation Areas.
November's Animal
Badgers are animals of open country. Their oval burrows (ten inches across and four to six inches high) are familiar features of grasslands on sandy or loamy soils of the eastern plains or shrub country in mountain parks or western valleys.