North Bend, Washington

Ski or Snowshoe to Pineapple Pass

4.5 Miles Total - 2000 ft gain - Out-and-Back Trail

Originally added by James Brady

A relatively modest route into the Snoqulamie Pass backcountry region that is great for beginner or intermediate backcountry skiing and snowshoeing.

Skiers or snowshoers looking to explore this route should park in the uppermost parking area at the Alpental ski area. This lot is past the main parking lot for the ski area. After getting your gear on, you can proceed down the groomed access run heading northwest out of the parking area. This run services some of the Alpental off-piste terrain but also serves as an access route to get to some of the best backcountry areas in the Snoqualmie Pass area. 

You can follow this groomed trail to the end or you may choose to leave it earlier if you see an established skin or snowshoe track that looks promising. Either way, you will eventually end up on a skin track which will run northeast for approximately a half mile and along the east side of the creek. From there, the route to Pineapple Pass will begin to head to the south and climb towards the pass. Before long, you should have a view up towards Pineapple Pass and the adjacent peak known as The Tooth. From that point on, it is essentially a straight shot up to the pass, however you should continue to proceed with caution because the slopes just beneath the pass are the steepest slopes on the entire route. Your descent route should closely follow your ascent route because venturing too far to the skier or snowshoer's left will cause you to eventually be cutoff by the creek or possibly even a waterfall. Additionally, it is helpful to stay further to the right if you are a skier because you will remain on downhill terrain longer and will have a shorter skin back to your car. 

As always, please proceed with extreme caution when traveling in the backcountry during the winter. Knowledge of backcountry travel techniques, avalanche awareness, and route finding are critical.  Please check the avalanche forecast before venturing out into this area and be sure to travel with an avalanche beacon, shovel, and probe and understand how to use them. 

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