Mileage: 1.5+ miles
Elevation Gain/Highest: 400ft/1450ft
Map: Green Trails Leavenworth 78, State Park Map
10/7/2017 I can’t tell you how many times I have driven by this state park on HWY 2 east just outside the town of Cashmere and wanted to stop. Well, this was finally the time!
The marker at the trailhead told us that Peshastin Pinnacles State Park Recreation Area was dedicated in 1991 by Booth Gardner (remember him?) and is a collection of climbing crags on 34 acres connected by a few winding loops and multiple side trails up to the base of the crag walls. Now, I’m not a climber but it was fun to walk the trail and look out at the Wenatchee Valley and orchard fields with the Cascade Mountains in the background, as well as gaze up at the sandstone walls and wonder at the routes people take up.
Most have bolted routes but there are a few with cracks climbs for those who have that skill. The park is mostly visited in the spring and fall due to its exposure and over the years it has lost its popularity to Vantage where the rock is not as soft and crumbly and routes are being developed more actively. The wooden kiosk at the trailhead has pictures of all the routes on the different crags, as well as the history of the park.
We walked through a wooden gate that is mostly for show because it wouldn’t keep any determined person from entering and were met with a left or right decision. We went left and began to head up amongst the towering slabs of rock. It was interesting to imagine how the hillside had filled in with soil around the jutting features, leaving just the few remaining slabs as a reminder of how rugged the terrain must have been.
It took us about 45 minutes to walk our chosen loop. We headed out on left on the Orchard Loop to the Grand Central Loop, then came back on the Sickle Loop and Martian Loop. Don’t you love those names? Pay attention to the side trails, some are established trail and come are just trampled vegetation from some who don’t stay on the actual path. The map you can find on the Washington State Parks website (linked above) gives you an idea of the difficulty levels of each trail.
Directions: Head east on HWY 2 from Leavenworth and in about 10 miles (before you come to the town of Cashmere), look for the brown signs that announce the state park. When you see the one that says the park is in 1/2 mile, get ready to turn left because it’s coming right up! Follow N. Dryden Road as it winds to the left about 1/2 mile and the park entrance will be on the right. There is a large parking lot , picnic tables nestled in trees and bathrooms available, Discovery Pass needed.
7201 N Dryden Road
Cashmere, WA 98815