The Slide and Keekwulee Falls, Denny Creek Trailhead, Seattle: Alpine Lakes Wilderness - Snoqualmie Pass - Central Cascades, Washington

The Slide and Keekwulee Falls - 4.0 miles

Denny Creek Trailhead

Keekwulee Falls

Keekwulee Falls

Round-Trip Length: 4.0 miles
Start-End Elevation: 2,550' – 3,113' (3,113' max elevation)
Elevation Change: +560' net elevation gain (+888’ total roundtrip elevation gain)
Skill Level: Easy
Dogs Allowed: Yes
Bikes Allowed: No
Horses Allowed: No
Related Trails:

The Slide and Keekwulee Falls - 4.0 Miles Round-Trip

The Denny Creek Trail runs deep into the Alpine Lakes backcountry with access to Melakwa Lake and Snow Lake. There are two intermediate destinations along the way ideal for shorter day trips and families - The Slide (1.3 miles) and Keekwulee Falls (2.0 miles).

Trail Map | Photo Gallery

The Slide is an area where cascading water pours over smooth rock slabs and fills natural rock pools along Denny Creek. Keekwulee Falls is a 70' cascade located .7 miles ahead with great views down the valley. Both are easily reached and a perfect respite on hot summer days:

The trail follows Denny Creek north from the trailhead before veering NW across a bridge (.4 miles) and passing under the I-90 viaduct (.65 miles) to the ALW Boundary (1.0 miles : 2,575').

It runs under a tall canopy to stairs that lead down to the The Slide (1.3 miles : 2,690'), where gushing water spills over smooth rock slabs and fills natural stone pools along the creek. Exercise caution while exploring this deceptively slick area.

The trail rock-hops Denny Creek to the west side (1.5 miles), a cross that can be impassable at high water. Once over long switchbacks steer the trail south, then west, up fully exposed rockslides (1.7 miles).

It clears these uneven slide paths to great views of Keekwulee Falls, which pour 70’ over an exposed geometric chunk of granite (2.0 miles : 3,133’).

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Interactive GPS Topo Map

Key GPS Coordinates - DATUM WGS84

  • N47 24.921 W121 26.602 — 0.0 miles: Denny Creek Trailhead - 2,550'
  • N47 25.126 W121 26.617 — 0.4 miles: Cross Denny Creek
  • N47 25.349 W121 26.949 — 1.0 miles: Alpine Lakes Wilderness Boundary - 2,575'
  • N47 25.514 W121 27.082 — 1.3 miles: The Slide - 2,690'
  • N47 25.788 W121 27.238 — 2.0 miles: Keekwulee Falls Viewpoint - 3,050'

Worth Noting

  • The pools and waterslides here are very popular with kids and families on warm summer weekends. Arrive early to secure parking and avoid crowds.
  • The Denny Creek ford at The Slide can be hazardous during high water.
  • The open terrain leading to Keekwulee Falls is fully exposed to sun – bring sunscreen and plenty of water.

Camping and Backpacking Information

Car Camping is available at the Denny Creek Campground

  • The campground has 33 Individual sites and 1 group site for 20 - 50 persons. There are 7 accessible sites. Amenities include water faucets, flush toilets and picnic tables.

  • All developed site regulations apply. Dogs must be on leash, campfires in developed rings only, quiet hours between 10 p.m. and 8 a.m. Fireworks are prohibited. Concessionaire sites require a fee paid upon arrival to the campground host. Stay limit is 14 days.

  • Reservations and current fees for the Denny Creek Campground can be made or found via Recreation.gov or by calling 877.444.6777. Advance reservations recommended.
Backcountry Camping

  • Backcountry camping is allowed only at designated campsites within 1/2-mile of the following locations: Gem Lake, Gravel Lake, Island Lake, Lower Tuscohatchie Lake, Mason Lake, Melakwa Lake, Olallie Lake, Pratt Lake, Rainbow Lake, Snow Lake, Talapus Lake, and Williams Lake.

  • At Melakwa Lake there is a privy and campsites on the east and west sides of the lake.

  • An overnight Wilderness permit must be filled out at the TH. Max group size is 12.

  • Campfires are not permitted above 4000’, or at Melakwa, Tuscohatchie and Pratt Lakes.

Fishing Information

  • Fishing is allowed with a valid WA state fishing license.

  • Contact the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife for more information.

  • wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/
Email: [email protected]
Sport/Commercial Licenses: 360.902.2434
Disability Licenses: 360.902.2460

Rules and Regulations

  • A Northwest Forest Pass or $5 fee is required at this trailhead.
  • A free day use or overnight Wilderness Permit must be filled out at the TH and carried for the duration of your trip in the Alpine Lakes Wilderness.
  • Dogs must be leashed at all times in the Alpine Lakes Wilderness.

Directions to Trailhead

The Denny Creek Trailhead is located 2.8 miles from Exit 47 on I-90 west of Snoqualmie Pass.

From I-90, exit 47 to Denny Creek/Tinkham Road and turn left off the ramp. After .2 miles, turn right at the T intersection (turning left here takes you to the Pratt Lake/Granite trailhead).

Pass under I-90 and turn left at .2 miles onto FR 58 / Denny Creek Rd. At 2.4 miles, just past the Denny Creek Campground, turn left at the Y into the Franklin Falls Trailhead parking lot. Continue across bridge .25 miles to the Denny Creek Trailhead.

The parking lot holds 50 cars and has bathrooms. 

Contact Information

Mt Baker - Snoqualmie National Forest | Snoqualmie Ranger District
902 SE North Bend Way, Bldg 1
North Bend, WA 98045
425.888.1421
Reference Trail #1014

Trip Reports

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