Asahel Curtis Nature Trail, Asahel Curtis Trailhead, Seattle: Alpine Lakes Wilderness - Snoqualmie Pass - Central Cascades, Washington
Asahel Curtis Nature Trail - .9 miles
Asahel Curtis Trailhead
|Round-Trip Length:||.9 miles|
|Start-End Elevation:||1,900' - 1,900' (2,057' max elevation)|
|Elevation Change:||+160' total roundtrip elevation gain|
Asahel Curtis Nature Trail - .9 Miles Round-Trip
The Asahel Curtis Nature Trail showcases some of the last old growth forest in the I-90 / South Fork Snoqualmie Valley. The trail is named for an early glass plate photographer from Seattle who documented Washington’s natural history and native cultures at the turn of the century. This trail shares a trailhead with the popular Lake Annette Trail (#1019).
A gravel path leads to the first bridge over Humpback Creek, crosses a narrow island in the creek, then a second bridge. Note numbered posts detailing flora and refer to the brochure (available free at the trailhead) for detailed descriptions and notes on local natural history. The first posts describe Humpback Creek, a swamp, Western red cedar and Western hemlock.
At .2 miles (1,970’) the trail splits for a short loop; head right for counter-clockwise travel that follows numbered posts in order. Signs describe snags, understory vegetation and a parade of giant trees. A mild 100’ climb runs through a magnificent old growth Douglas fir stand and understory of sword fern, bunchberry and mossy nurse logs.
At .6 miles the trail arcs west past interpretive signs for Pacific silver fir, a woodpecker’s lunch box and nature’s calendar (an ancient cross-cut log showing it’s dense ring-growth pattern). Complete the loop at .7 miles and retrace your steps to the trailhead (.9 miles : 1,900’).
- N47 23.569 W121 28.434 — 0.0 miles : Asahel Curtis Trailhead
- N47 23.513 W121 28.306 — 0.2 miles : Cross two bridges to base of loop
- N47 23.483 W121 28.174 — 0.4 miles : Pass through old growth stand
- N47 23.509 W121 28.176 — 0.55 miles : Descend back to loop split
- This trail is a great choice for families with young children. Be mindful of slippery boardwalks.
- The Asahel Curtis Nature Trail shares a trailhead with the extremely popular Lake Annette Trail (#1019). Arrive early to secure parking and avoid crowds.
- Be sure to grab a free guide at the trailhead detailing the flora and old growth specimens described at each numbered post along the nature trail.
- WTA volunteer crews recently completed significant improvements to the approach trail to the bridge over Humpback Creek.
Camping and Backpacking Information
The Denny Creek Campground is located just across I-90 for car camping. Pass back under the freeway and take a right at the T-junction (going left leads to the Pratt Lake / Granite TH). Cross under I-90 and turn left at .2 miles onto FR 58 / Denny Creek Rd. Continue for 2.4 miles to the Denny Creek Campground.
Rules and Regulations
- A Northwest Forest Pass or $5 fee is required at this trailhead.
Directions to Trailhead
The Asahel Curtis Nature Trail is located .5 miles off Exit 47 on I-90 west of Snoqualmie Pass.
From I-90, take exit 47 (signed Denny Creek / Asahel Curtis) and turn right off the ramp. In .1 mile, turn left at a “T” intersection (signed Asahel & Annette Lake), and continue .4 miles to the large parking lot on the right. The trailhead is located at the eastern end of the parking lot nearest Humpback creek.
The combined Asahel – Lake Annette parking lot hold 75 cars and has vault toilets.
Mt Baker - Snoqualmie National Forest | Snoqualmie Ranger District
902 SE North Bend Way, Bldg 1
North Bend, WA 98045
Reference Asahel Curtis Nature Trail (#1023)