|Range Type||Mountain range with well-recognized name|
|Highest Point||Mount Baker (10,781 ft/3286 m)|
|Countries||United States (70%), Canada (30%)|
(numbers are approximate percentage of range area)
|States/Provinces||Washington (70%), British Columbia (30%)|
(numbers are approximate percentage of range area)
|Area||15,957 sq mi / 41,329 sq km|
Area may include lowland areas
|Extent||206 mi / 331 km North-South|
171 mi / 276 km East-West
|Center Lat/Long||48° 56' N; 121° 17' W|
|Map Link||Microsoft Bing Map|
Search Engines - search the web for "North Cascades":
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The North Cascades the largest area of sustained high-quality glaciated alpine terrain in the contiguous 48 U.S. states. The massive volcanos of the more southern reaches of the Cascade Range, such as Mounts Rainier, Adams, Hood, and Shasta, are far higher and have larger glaciers, but they stand alone, isolated from each other by large areas of relatively flat forest. The North Cascades, though, are mostly non-volcanic, and form a extremely rugged, difficult, remote, and challenging mass of glaciated alpine mountains.
This site uses Stevens Pass and U.S. 2 as the southern border of the North Cascades, but sometimes Snoqualmie Pass and I-90 further south are used as the divider. The Fraser River in Canada is the clear northern border, and the Columbia and Okanogan Rivers form the eastern edge of the area. To the northeast, the North Cascades merge indistinctly into the plateaus of British Colubmia, well beyond the point where the mountains have become low and unimpressive.
The North Cascades get massive amounts of precipitation, giving them an abundance of crevassed glaciers and jagged, ice-carved faces, but also deep, jungly rainforest on the lower slopes. Climbing a major North Cascades summit often means a miserable bushwhack though deep undergrowth, followed by alpine challenge on the ice above. Good trails get hikers and climbers through the forest to timberline on most popular routes, but approaches are still long and the weather is usually unsettled.
Mount Baker and Glacier Peak are the only 10,000-foot summits in the North Cascades, the only volcanoes, and the most popular and easy to climb major summits. The remainder of the range bears little resemblance to the two highest peaks; the seven or so peaks in the 9,000 to 10,000 foot range are primarily a fearsome group of jagged monsters that require solid technical climbing ability. Bonanza Peak, Mount Goode, Mount Logan, and Mount Buckner are as big and hard as mountains come in the U.S. outside Alaska.
|Map of North Cascades|
Click on red triangle icons for links to other ranges.
Note: Range borders shown on map are an approximation and are not authoritative.
Click Here for a Full Screen Map
|Other Ranges: To go to pages for other ranges either click on the map above, or on range names in the hierarchy snapshot below, which show the parent, siblings, and children of the North Cascades.|
|Cascade Range||Level 3 (Parent)|
|         North Cascades||Level 4|
|                 Far Northern Cascade Range||Level 5 (Child)|
|                 Skagit Range||Level 5 (Child)|
|                 Hozameen Range||Level 5 (Child)|
|                 Okanogan Range||Level 5 (Child)|
|                 Mountain Loop Area||Level 5 (Child)|
|                 Central North Cascades||Level 5 (Child)|
|                 Methow Mountains||Level 5 (Child)|
|                 Glacier Peak-North Stevens Pass Area||Level 5 (Child)|
|                 Entiat Mountains||Level 5 (Child)|
|                 Chelan Mountains||Level 5 (Child)|
|         South Washington Cascades||Level 4 (Sibling)|
|         Oregon Cascades||Level 4 (Sibling)|
|         California Cascades||Level 4 (Sibling)|
Major Peaks of the North Cascades
Photos of Peaks in the North Cascades
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