Lake Chelan National Recreation Area in Washington

Leavenworth Washington
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Lake Chelan National Recreation Area

Lake Chelan Recreational Area is only reachable by foot, boat, or plane. This remote lake and mountain area has managed to remain untouched by the masses, preserving its peaceful and pristine atmosphere. Read More

  • Escape to the absolutely untouched beauty of Lake Chelan National Recreation Area by foot, plane, or boat. 
  • Camp in the quiet woods surrounding the lake where you will be able to enjoy hikes, fishing, and swimming. 
  • Visit the local town of Stehekin to see a true mountain town that has remained removed from modern technology and convenience.

What can I see and do at Lake Chelan National Recreational Area? 

  • Hiking: There is a lot of hiking around the Lake Chelan National Recreational Area as this is one of the main ways to reach the lake and town. Easy hikes include Agnes Gorge, a 2.5 mile hike where you can see a spring waterfall, and Stehekin River, a level trail with flowers and ponds. A moderate hike is 4.4 mile Rainbow Loop where you can access open bluffs that overlook the valley. Purple Creek is a strenuous 7.5 mile hike with 57 switchbacks and views of the valley and Lake Chelan. 
  • Camping: Lodging in Lake Chelan Recreation Area Washington is limited to local campsites, including Purple Point, Harlequinn, Rainbow Bridge, High Bridge, Cottonwood, and Weaver Point. 
  • Stehekin: The town of Stehekin is the only town within the Lake Chelan National Recreational Area. It is an extremely small town without any road access. When you visit the town be aware that there is no cell service, no ATM and limited groceries. You will need to come prepared with all your necessary provisions.

Where is Lake Chelan National Recreational Area?

Located about 130 miles northeast of Leavenworth, Lake Chelan National Recreational Area is hidden in the North Cascades National Park Complex. Take US 2 to US 97. Turn left onto WA-153 and continue onto WA 20. From this area you will have to pick a trail to hike into the area, take a ferry from Chelan or hire a plane onto the lake.

Who can I call if I have more questions?

If you have more questions please call the Golden West Visitor Center at (360) 854-7365.