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North Cascade Highway Drive

When you are ready to get out of the city and find some incredible winding roads to explore, the Cascade Loop Scenic Highway is an ideal day or weekend adventure. Beginning in the Methow Valley in the town of Twisp and ending in the Skagit Valley, there is so much to see and do along the way; you can easily make a fabulous weekend out of this day trip.


To kick off this adventure you will want to head north on I-5 to Highway 2, where you may want to stock up on snacks and fill your tank in Monroe before heading out on this adventure. Along Highway 2, you will wander past small rustic towns such as Sultan, Gold Bar, and Index before coming to the historic town of Snohomish. Snohomish is known for its antiquing, so if you have the time, be sure to pull off and wander through the town.


There are many hiking trails along the Skykomish River to explore, and whitewater rafting or kayaking adventures to seize upon if you can make the time. There are bald eagle feeding grounds along the way, so if you are interested in watching the eagles, be sure to stop by Osprey Park in Sultan. In the fall when the salmon are spawning, it is a must-see with the fall colors surrounding you.


As you make your way east you will find yourself in Leavenworth, a Bavarian town with quaint shops, events such as a month-long Christmas tree lighting celebration, Oktoberfest, and an Autumn leaf festival. Leavenworth is nestled near Icicle River Valley which has stunning views and is a hiking and rock climbing paradise. 


As you make your way through Wenatchee toward Methow Valley, you will find yourself driving through Lake Chelan, a lovely town with a gorgeous lake and many adventures awaiting you. Known for their boutique wineries, Lake Chelan also is the home port for the Lady of the Lake excursion boat that travels to Stehekin, a tiny off-the-grid village worthy of exploration.


Heading into the Methow Valley, the town of Twisp is the beginning of the North Cascades Highway. You thought you were already in the thick of the beauty and sights to behold; however, this is where your quality driving adventure truly begins. Soon after you cruise down the start of the Cascade Loop, you will end up in Winthrop, a western-themed town. Winthrop sports many little restaurants and boutique shops, and an ice cream shop with saddles for you to sit on while overlooking the river. If you are looking for a secret spot nearby, drive west past Winthrop and into the little town of Mazama where you will find a store/deli with fantastic sandwiches and clever things you had no idea that you needed.


On your journey west on Highway 20, you will find plenty of scenic pull-offs with lookouts to the amazing mountains and river that runs through it. Diablo dam is one of many places to explore. Along these fabulous driving mountain roads, there is no shortage of places to explore; however, you may find yourself with a grin on your face and foot on the accelerator wishing the road will never end. If you are ready for a bathroom break, stop in Newhalem,as there is a nice public restroom, and if you want to stretch your legs, walk to the river where a suspension bridge takes you along a beautiful trail on the riverside.


Back on the road heading west, be sure to keep an eye out for elk along the roadway, they are huge and can total your car in a hurry. Before long you will find yourself in the foothills and the town of Concrete, just before the flatlands and fertile farmlands of the Skagit Valley, and heading back for the freeway south for home.


When you are ready to kick your adventure up a notch, make the best driving experience possible with the Bristow's difference. Make your appointment with some of the most qualified auto mechanics in the business today at Bristow's Auto Repair. We back our work with a 2-year, 24,000-mile warranty, and our entire team focuses on creating a top-notch customer service experience. We specialize in BMW service and repair, so you'll know that your BMW is in the best of hands. Make your appointment today!

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