Located off the Mountain Loop Highway between Granite Falls & Darrington, this is a popular family hike with wide, easy trails and minimal elevation changes. The trail itself provides a diversity of environments within a two mile round trip journey. If you choose to go explore the boulder fields and make a snow ball your distance will begin to increase. We ended up doing about 3.8 miles total. NW Forest pass is required for parking - available in Granite Falls (I believe) and at the Verlot Ranger station.
My spouse took the day as a 'scrapbooking day', so I prepped the kids and met up with a friend & his kids for this sure-to-please hike for all newbie ages. Two adults, five kids (aged 4 1/2 to 7)... everyone survived with smiles and no one had to be carried.
Only one of the ice caves was open at the edge of the snowfield (see pic), but there were a few other spots where you could see holes opening up higher on the snowpack. We heeded the warning signs and kept everyone off the snow and out of the caves.
There was a large group at the picnic area and quite a few on the trail... lots of kids, lots of dogs, and even a couple of gals who appeared to be wearing bridesmaid dresses. I guess this would be one of the better trails for such styles.
I hope you enjoy the pics.
>EDIT: Adding a pic from flickr
Big Four Ice Caves
-------------- "Ill habits gather unseen degrees, as brooks make rivers, rivers run to seas." ~John Dryden
My Trip List
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