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Cedar Falls, Washington, United States

Rattlesnake Ridge

Atop Rattlesnake Ridge great views of the surrounding mountains can be seen including Mount Si and Mount Washington.

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    This guide contains photos
 (29 votes, 25 reviews)
Difficulty: Easy
Length: 1.9 miles / 3.1 km
Duration: 1-3 hours
Family Friendly • Dog Friendly
 
Overview: This is a very popular trail in the summer months. It is a short 30 minute drive from downtown Bellevue or under an hour away from Seattle. Not only does this trail provide you with great panoramic views from atop Rattlesnake Ridge but there is also a great park located down below. Many people come to the use the lake in the warmer months. There are no motored boats or fishing allowed on the lake which makes this place ideal for kayakers and swimmers alike.

You can also find several connecting trails within the Rattlesnake Ridge parking area. At the end of the Rattlesnake Ridge trail you can continue on for a full day hike along the Ridge on the East Peak trail or complete the 10 mile trek to Snoqualmie. Additionally you can find the Snoqualmie Valley Trail just as you leave the parking area. This is a great trail if you are looking for a long hike or bike ride. The trail starts south of Rattlesnake Lake and continues up to Duval, over 35 miles of converted railroad to trail.


Tips: How to get there:

Take I-90 east and get off on Exit 32, 436th Avenue SE, just past the exits towards North Bend. Take a right off of the exit, heading south on 436th Ave SE which turns into Cedar Falls Road. Travel about three miles and follow the signs posted for Rattlesnake Lake. You will see several parking areas on both sides of the street. The park is a very popular location in the warmer months due to the lake. You may have to park on the edge of the road if the park is crowded.

Hours:

The park is open year around, dawn to dusk.

Amenities:

-There are restrooms by the lake as you enter the park.
-No camping is available in the park.
-An additional portable restroom is located in front of
the trailhead marker.
-No water is available within the park, you should pack
your own water.
-On Cedar Falls Rd, the road leading up to the park, there
is a small shop where you can purchase food and drinks.

Points of Interest

Viewpoint
map

Mountains Range Seen from Rattlesnake Lake

From this spot you can see the entire Rattlesnake Lake. It is tucked between Rattlesnake Mountain and Mount Washington. Located nearby are grass and sandy areas which would be a perfect area to have a picnic. Also behind this spot are the restrooms and main parking area for the park.
Viewpoint
map

Rattlesnake Lake 1

This is another great view of the lake. On the lake you can view many birds floating along. The shoreline is muddy so bring a pair of extra shoes or you can find dryer ground further away from the lakes edge. It is interesting to search the muddy areas to find out what animals have visited lake during the night.
Viewpoint
map

Rattlesnake Lake 2

At the far edge of the lake you should be able to spot the Rattlesnake Ridge trailhead marker. You will cross over a compacted dirt access road and see a single portable restroom near the trail entrance.
Junction
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Rattlesnake Ridge Trailhead Marker

This is the official start to the Rattlesnake Ridge Trail. From here you will be greeted by a gentle uphill climb. The trail is an easy hike for the whole family; I have seen a few strollers on the trail as well.
Landmark
map

Giant Boulder

A short way into the trail you will come to a giant boulder. This is the only giant boulder I have found while hiking the trail. It is similar to other large boulders located in nearby parks. I believe it's a glacial boulder left over from when a giant glacier crossed the area millions of years ago to form the Puget Sound area.
Landmark
map

Access Trail Road

You will come to a crossroad in the trail. To your left and right will be an old access road. The road does not appear to have been maintained for quite some time. Fallen trees will block your path, continue up the dirt path.
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A Small Clearing

Here is a small clearing where you can see numerous grasses and wildflowers. Most of the trail consists of large trees and ferns. This is one of the few areas to view wildflowers while on the trail.
Landmark
map

Fallen Tree

Here you can see a large Douglas fir that had fallen years ago. It offers a great spot to rest before the first switchback in the trail.
map

Hollowed out Tree

I just thought this was an interesting site on the trail. I was hoping to catch a picture of a blue jay that had stopped to rest. Unfortunately my camera made to much noise and I was unable to capture its photo.
map

Moss Covered Trees

Just after the first switchback on the trail, you will start to see moss covered trees. Most of trail is covered in a thick canopy from the towering Douglas fir trees. The low light and natural moist weather are excellent conditions for the moss to grow.
map

Straight Away

After the first switchback there will be few twists and turns in the trail. The trail has a gentle incline as it rounds the base of Rattlesnake Mountain.
Viewpoint
map

Viewpoint 1

This is one of many view points along the trail. Some of the viewpoints may require you to take a short detour off the trail to get a better view. Looking out over the edge you can see the lake below as well as the mountain range to the southeast.
map

Mushroom

There will be many opportunities to look for mushrooms along the trail. With little to no light penetrating the forest canopy, these fungi are plentiful.
Viewpoint
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Clearing Along the Trail

This is another vantage point along the trail. Now that you are moving further into the forest on your way to the peak, your views of the lake are limited. On clear days though you will always be able to catch glimpses of the Mountains across the way.
Landmark
map

Wooden Bridge

Here you will cross a short wooden bridge over a ravine. There are no water features on the trail unless you are hiking in heavy rain and crossing over the runoff. On your climb up through the switchbacks you will be able to hear a waterfall in the distance but it is not accessible from this trail.
Junction
map

Overlook Trail Marker

Congratulations you are almost to the top. Continue on the trail to your right and you will arrive on a large rock ledge. From here you will have a great view of numerous mountains and reservoirs in the distance.

If you are looking for a longer hike, take a quick moment to enjoy the view and continue on the trail the left towards North Peak.
Viewpoint
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Mount Si

Mount Si can be seen from the top of the ledge. Look to the North and the large mountain standing alone will be Mt. Si and Little Si.
Viewpoint
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Mt. Washington

From the rock ledge you can see Mt. Washington. It is located to the east just across Rattlesnake Lake and to the right of I-90.
Animals/Wildlife
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Mountain Squirrel

On the rocky ledge you are standing on, there are numerous cracks in the rock. Use caution if you have to jump over them.

Located in many of these cracks are a number of animals. While I was there I saw a few squirrels and a possum. If you brought your dogs along with you make sure you have a tight grip on them as it is easy to loose your footing.
Viewpoint
map

The Peak

This is the rocky ledge that you are now standing on. Take a moment to enjoy the view before heading back down. There is plenty of space to have a snack or picnic on the rock.
Viewpoint
map

East Peak

As you make your way towards the ledge, there will be a break in the forest that will provide a great view of Mount Si to the north. If you look to the left you can see the rock face of North Peak. If you wish to continue on up the trail this will be your next stop.
Pictures in this guide taken by: gbhoskins
Reviews
midnightf
Tremendous.. awesome, superb, fabulous place it is...

by midnightf 4 days ago
stevebhalla
tremendous place.... Great Trail

by stevebhalla 5 days ago
Kanward
nice place for elders :)!!!!!!!!!
Visited on May 04, 2011

by Kanward on Jul 13, 2014
Sukhjinder
most natural place on the planet :)
Visited on Mar 01, 2014

by Sukhjinder on Jul 13, 2014
ricerubberpolisher
Very Nice Place darling it
Visited on May 03, 2012

by ricerubberpolisher on Apr 16, 2014
LostloveBackSolution
condition at this send
Visited on May 07, 2010

by LostloveBackSolution on Apr 11, 2014
LoveMarriageSolution
great place rattle snake ridge
Visited on May 03, 2011

by LoveMarriageSolution on Apr 11, 2014
hikinginthenorthwest
After a short hike to Snoqualmie Falls decided to cover Rattlesnake also as the weather had improved.

Reached the parking lot around 2:30. Not many people were there. The lake was overflowing. The trail is in good shape. The hike is gentle in the beginning but becomes steep around the first mile. The views were fabulous as you step out on the ledge from the trail. The mountains, the lakes and the valley were awesome. The weather was playing tricks. Could see rain, clouds and sunshine all at the same time. With so few people it was very peaceful.

Spend around 40 minutes at the ledge and did not venture further to the other ledges higher up. Was down in the parking lot by 5:45 and headed back.
More details and picture at http://sunilshikes.wordpress.com/2014/04/01/rattlesnake-ledge-03-29-2014/

Visited on Mar 29, 2014

by hikinginthenorthwest on Apr 05, 2014
ricerubberroll
i just loves this place
Visited on May 07, 2010

by ricerubberroll on Mar 13, 2014
ricerubberrolls
many lakes. wildlife is amazing
Visited on Mar 03, 2011

by ricerubberrolls on Mar 10, 2014
bestindianastrologer
pretty cool place gets too hot in summers thoughRattlesnake Ridge
Visited on May 06, 2010

by bestindianastrologer on Mar 07, 2014
paddydehusker
Very nice place for adventurous people
Visited on Apr 02, 2012

by paddydehusker on Mar 06, 2014
lovemarriagespecialist
everyone loves this place
Visited on Apr 05, 2006

by lovemarriagespecialist on Mar 05, 2014
LoveVashikaranmantra
was lucky to see 2 rattlesnakes here
Visited on Jun 05, 2012

by LoveVashikaranmantra on Mar 04, 2014
astroman999
had great time with all my friends
Visited on May 05, 2005

by astroman999 on Feb 24, 2014
ankitkhanna
everyone should love this place
Visited on Mar 04, 2012

by ankitkhanna on Jan 27, 2014
harinderinizz
nice place for youngsters
Visited on Jun 07, 2000

by harinderinizz on Nov 22, 2013
harinderiniz
great place.. found a rattlesnake too
Visited on May 06, 2006

by harinderiniz on Oct 30, 2013
harinderseo
Just quick drive from SEA. had great fun
Visited on Jun 06, 2005

by harinderseo on Oct 29, 2013
lalamaus
FAVORITE VIEW of any easy/mod hike within a quick drive from Seattle.

by lalamaus on Aug 18, 2013
Thaiger75
This was my first real hike in WA (so take my review from the perspective of someone who is a novice hiker and not that great in shape). Though the trail is rated as "easy," I would say that it was a pretty tough hike due to the constant steep slopes. So may not be the best trail for children for their first time hiking. The view at the top as everyone says, of course, is definitely worth the trip.
Visited on Jun 29, 2013

by Thaiger75 on Jul 07, 2013
mira.mui
Arrived Seattle just this week and HAD to take advantage of the hiking before it got too cold and rainy. It's only about 30-45 mins from Seattle downtown for this 2-3 hr trail to and back.

The ascent it steep all the way up. But seeing the number of kids that were going up this trail, can't really say it's too hard. You're rewarded at the top with great views since the ledge has no trees growing on it.

Great lake at the bottom for throwing pebbles (lots of flat ones).


Visited on Oct 21, 2012

by mira.mui on Oct 21, 2012
Dowken
Gorgeous scenery all the way to the top. It was quite foggy on this day, so the view was obscured. Starts of fairly easy and gets a bit steep closer to the end.
Visited on Aug 07, 2012

by Dowken on Aug 11, 2012
tottenkoph
My friend Amanda and I decided that we wanted to start hiking (neither of us have lived in Washington state that long and we both wanted to take some time and some of the more or less free sources of recreation), which led us to climbing up a mountain yesterday! I think that we were a happy mixture of pretty prepared and horribly unprepared. At the bottom, it was flat and green with a few trees that had been knocked down after the snow/ice storm we had gotten a week ago. It did, however, kind of reinforce to me that I have been horribly inactive lately and that I need to get better about it. I also learned that the craziest things can motivate me to keep going (I was going to give up with only .50 or so miles to go until someone said that there was a cave at the top. Of course the first thing in my mind was “I have to see if it’s the G.D. bat cave” and continued to go).

Overall, it was a really fun hike and the people that we met on the trail going up/down were all very nice as well as encouraging. I would like to do this hike again later on in the year after it has gotten a little bit warmer and the skies a little bit clearer.

Visited on Jan 29, 2012

by tottenkoph on Mar 06, 2012
tottenkoph
My friend Amanda and I decided that we wanted to start hiking (neither of us have lived in Washington state that long and we both wanted to take some time and some of the more or less free sources of recreation), which led us to climbing up a mountain yesterday! I think that we were a happy mixture of pretty prepared and horribly unprepared. At the bottom, it was flat and green with a few trees that had been knocked down after the snow/ice storm we had gotten a week ago. It did, however, kind of reinforce to me that I have been horribly inactive lately and that I need to get better about it. I also learned that the craziest things can motivate me to keep going (I was going to give up with only .50 or so miles to go until someone said that there was a cave at the top. Of course the first thing in my mind was “I have to see if it’s the G.D. bat cave” and continued to go).

Overall, it was a really fun hike and the people that we met on the trail going up/down were all very nice as well as encouraging. I would like to do this hike again later on in the year after it has gotten a little bit warmer and the skies a little bit clearer.

Visited on Jan 29, 2012

by tottenkoph on Mar 06, 2012

Rattlesnake Ridge Trail Map


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About the Author

gbhoskins
gbhoskins
25 guides
view gbhoskins's profile
Just moved back to the Pacific Northwest and love exploring new trails.

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