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Backpacker Magazine – March 2014

The Beautiful North Cascades

Talk about a dream job: Photographer Ethan Welty roved secluded valleys and isolated mountaintops as an artist-in-residence at Washington's North Cascades National Park last summer. That was just the capstone on eight years he's spent photographing the area. Here are a few of his favorite spots.


North Cascades NP
Silver Lake

At this alpine lake, with Mt. Rahm, Devils Toothpick, and Devils Thumb (left to right) biting into the sky, the scene is all serenity, stillness, and stark beauty. The rugged, 8.5-mile trip here is something quite different. Reserve a permit from the park office and take the trail along Depot Creek from Canada (passport required). Depot Falls plunges 948 feet, alternating between sliding over rock and falling in a horsetail plume. You"ll get a good look as you cross beneath it on fixed cables with the spray lapping your face. Pick your way to a hanging valley, then ascend to fireweed-fringed Lake Ouzel at mile 6.5. Scramble 2 miles over the pass to Silver Lake. Info nps.gov/noca

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