Saturday, September 29, 2012

The Scenic Driving Trail To Baldy Pass

The Baldy Pass is situated near the city of Conconully Washington which is about 51 miles in total length and can take 2.5 hours to complete. The trail will pass the Chewuch River and continues to make an ascent to the mountains at the Baldy Pass with an elevation of 6,515 feet to the First Butte lookout where it drops to an elevation of 5,491 feet.
The trail starts at central Winthrop and then proceeds to Riverside Street on the north. It continues to Bluff Street as you move forward reaching the Pearrygin Lake State Park. The trail then turns to East Chewuch Road. An alternate route from Conconully, takes west at the junction of West Fork Road and Conconully Road near its state park. From there, proceed to West Fork Road for 3.1 mile before swerving right to a northwestern direction on Road 37.
Back to the first route from Winthrop, follow the flat level road that turns north on the Chewuch River Road for 6.6 miles before turning right at a northeastern direction on Road 37. The Chewuch River is where salmon spawns around August. From Road 37, continue on the single-lane paved road of Boulder Creek where it ends at around 6 miles and then turning to Road 800 where you swerve left up north. Take Road 800 for 2.4 miles and then drive another 2.2 miles by going left to a southwest direction which will take you to the First Butte Lookout as the rest stop for this trail.
The First Butte Lookout was built in 1938 and is listed on the National Historic Lookout Register which is an active fire lookout provides you a 360-view of the surrounding area. It was also used in World War II as warning station for aircraft passing by. At this lookout, you may check the North Cascades region's majestic mountains and green valleys. You can also view its national park and the Pasayten Wilderness from here. Once done with sightseeing, proceed back to Road 37 and drive for 6 miles to Road 39's junction. Take a right turn with a southeastern direction on Road 37 as the dirt road makes an ascent to Baldy Pass for approximately 5.6 miles.
On this road you will be afforded with some excellent views of the Old Baldy's peak. This section is also west of the North Cascade range which stretches from California to British Columbia which offers a superb alpine scenic view. From here, descent to a narrow road and stop along the way as you check the eastern Cascade's foothills and the valleys of the Columbia Basin. The asphalt road resumes at 9.3 miles from the pass and continues to a junction around 5 miles more. Take a northeastern direction to the left where the trail proceeds to West Fork Road and upon reaching that, just take 3.1 miles more to reach the city of Conconully Washington.

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