Big Four Ice Caves Trail

EASY 238 reviews
#2 of 85 trails in

Big Four Ice Caves Trail is a 2.4 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Granite Falls, Washington that features a waterfall and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from May until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
2.4 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
321 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly

birding

hiking

nature trips

snowshoeing

trail running

walking

cave

forest

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

snow

From Granite Falls follow the Mountain Loop Highway east for 26 miles to the trailhead, on the right (elev. 1750 ft). Privy available. You can also hike from the Big Four Picnic Area, which is 0.5 mile before (west of) the caves trailhead off of the Mountain Loop Highway.

19 hours ago

great hike, very short but so beautiful. a great one for kids!!

2 days ago

Great hike for Fathers Day. Well maintained trail, but definitely well trafficked. We took our dog, all other dogs where on leashes. Took us just over an hour, round trip. Highly recommend!

18 days ago

I love this trail for what it is, kid friendly, easy,
close to home, and beautiful. This is far from my favorite hike but it’s a fun place to explore when I’m with my toddler or limited on time. LOVE how much parking is available here.

hiking
22 days ago

this 2nd time there was no cave because the snow but view worth it

hiking
23 days ago

Late Memorial weekend 2018. Busy. Was our first time. 2 adults, a 17yo man-child and 4 year old twin boys. We all had a great time. Easy enough for the kiddos. Increased challenge for adults when we carried the twins. lol. Gorgeous views. Good amount of snow at the top. Trail easy and clean. We heard an avalanche on our way down. It was closer to the top. Still ominous as it echoed throughout the valley. Definitely going again.

23 days ago

Crowded, but a nice hike quick hike to a glaciers.

1 month ago

Beautiful views and worth the easy hike!

hiking
1 month ago

Went on a whim yesterday. Didn’t plan the trip so I was wearing flip flops. Road is no longer blocked and although there are a couple parts with snow on the trail I had no problem making it to the caves in my trusty flip flops!

1 month ago

My 3 star only because of what time of year it is. Road is still closed, but people were still driving to the picnic area to park closer before trekking up. The actual trail head is covered in snow, as is most of the trail. And the ice caves themselves aren't visible with all the snow that had fallen off the mountain. But super sunny and pretty. Good workout with all the snow to walk through, if not slippery. And hopefully the sun melts the snow soon so I can go back and see the ice caves for real. Didn't regret going overall.

hiking
1 month ago

We hiked there on Sunday and there’s a blockage in the middle of the road that somebody broke through, so we walked the 2.5 miles to the trailhead. There’s still a ton of snow on the trail but the distance is very short so it’s not too difficult. But there’s so much snow still that they’re completely covering the ice caves! Beautiful though! We even saw a mini avalanche! (So I wouldn’t recommend standing too close for a good minute)

1 month ago

DK's for Mountain Loop Highway are still closed you cannot get in you can get in to the ice cave but the parking lot is still covered in snow and the forest ranger said it will be open on Memorial Day

hiking
3 months ago

Road was closed when i got there. I had to walk extra 2 miles to the trail head, and it was covered with a lot of snow. Will come back when it has better condition.

hiking
3 months ago

This hike is pretty and not difficult. Lots of fresh snow so spikes weren’t necessary but did help when going up an incline. The cave is covered up right now, but the hike is still worth it. Saw a small avalanche as well. I can’t wait to go back when I can actually see the cave! Parking is about 2 miles away from the trailhead.

4 months ago

Went yesterday and the road is closed 2 miles before the turnoff so the hike is longer than what you’ll read about it. An avalanche covered the cave entrance so we couldn’t explore but up to the right are some small waterfalls and it was an absolutely gorgeous day. A lot of hard pack snow and ice, I didn’t bring my spikes but they wouldn’t be a bad idea to have.

hiking
4 months ago

What a rainy day in Washington, but what a wonderful Winter Wonderland at the Big Four Ice Caves!
Road was closed so it added an extra 4.4 miles (according to Apple GPS). Saw one snow avalanche and heard several. Be careful and highly recommend to stay on the trail.
My three dogs did so well, they love the snow!!
It wasn’t icy on 1/21, but snowy and slushy.

5 months ago

Great trail with beautiful view. Easy but was a bit icy in January.

hiking
6 months ago

Short and sweet with awesome scenery. Just enough snow to make it a winter wonderland hike! Trail is well maintained and easy to follow. Snow and slush covered most of it today but it wasn’t an issue for us.

6 months ago

Not really a hike but the caves were awesome!

6 months ago

Be careful! The whole mountain is basically a waterfall right now due to the rain, which is causing snow avalanches. If you hear something that sounds like a loud jet- that is an avalanche. Parking lot is covered In about 10 inches of snow. Other than the avalanches it was very beautiful and a pleasant hike/walk. Go prepared!

hiking
7 months ago

Hiked on 11/16/17. Trail in good conditions, with 2 to 4 inches of snow/slush. Recommend waterproof shoes and of course, to stay far from the ice caves. Saw a wet avalanche coming down close to the caves. Although it was a relatively small avalanche, I could hear the noise of the heavy pack roaring down. Nothing to worry if you stay in the trail away from the base of the mountain. Beautiful hike, specially this time of the year. My son and I had the trail just for us.

7 months ago

First snow . Beautiful

hiking
7 months ago

What a great little hike this is! Took a friend out there today for her first time, had it all to ourselves. The trail is in great condition, no flooding on the trail as mentioned in a trip report from a week ago. There is one tree across the trail that is easily passable. Love this trail, it’s beautiful all year round.

7 months ago

A couple of trees down on the trail, but you can climb over or around them. Wear waterproof shoes as parts of trail flooded due to rain. Other than t hat, nice and easy hike.

Love the drive. Nice pretty easy hike. This was my second time up. I went a few weeks back with a friend before the rain started.
This time the upper trail is flooded deeper then my ankle in some spots. Thank goodness for water proof boots.

The sites are amazing and full of color right now.
Make sure you hit the other side with what I am calling the waterfall wall. Way to cool to not go see it.

We did hear a big boom and am assuming it was a. Collapse and one of the caves. That was scary, just glad we were on the outside.

8 months ago

Easy, Beautiful, and great for a quick trip if need be!

hiking
8 months ago

Great easy trail with lots to see and those amazing ice caves - great for kids. Note you are advised not to go into the caves themselves as they are unstable (best to prep kids in advance as someone will be in there despite warnings when you arrive and kids will want to follow). Incredibly beautiful hike

hiking
9 months ago

Great place to hike but better not go with limited crowd. We went hiking with 2 cars parked (one is ours) in the parking lot. Came back with our window glass broken and all stuffs in the car gone, even charging wires and apartment parking sticker. Beware!

hiking
9 months ago

A nice relaxing hike we went on. nothing crazy mile wise. incline not alot. overall once we arrived to the caves and it was awesome. just make sure you bring a lite jacket if you get cold. we went on September 3,2017

9 months ago

Fun first trail to do with kids. Nice and pleasant leisurely hike with great views.

hiking
9 months ago

Arrived at the parking area on Sat 8/26/17 around 9:30AM. My senior national park pass was good to go here. I've heard this hike is real popular but when we got there the parking area was pretty much empty...lots of parking. I talked to a ranger who happened to be at the trail head...yes there are a lot of car break ins so don't leave anything of value in your car. The trail is in really good shape...boardwalk along part of the way. Very nice walk thru the forest. Short and easy hike good for families or slower walkers.

Load More