Old Sauk River Trail

EASY 45 reviews

Old Sauk River Trail is a 5.8 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Darrington, Washington that features a river and is good for all skill levels. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

5.8 miles
160 feet
Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly



nature trips






wild flowers


Directions from Darrington: Take the Mt. Loop Hwy. along the west side of the Sauk River. Follow this road for 4 miles going past the Clear Creek Campground. The trailhead is on the left.

27 days ago

It was a beautiful trail. Very easy to walk. My aging mother, and arthritic elderly dog, were both able to handle this trail with no complications. I would classify this more as a walk in the woods than as a hike, but the scenery was beautiful.

1 month ago

Great trail! Backpacked my 2 year old the entire 6 miles. Easy, minimal elevation. Beautiful views of the river most of the trip. Shady, sandy beach area towards the end where we stopped for lunch. Only complaint was dog owners not picking up poop.

4 months ago

Lots of snow, but managed to get to the lot and had a decent hike through the woods.

4 months ago

Visited this trail on 3/3/18. There was still plenty of snow but it was a beautiful sunny day and the trail is fairly easy to traverse with appropriate footwear.

6 months ago

Nice trail for winter time. Very very easy trail to walk with no elevation gain. No snow and not a muddy or water logged trail. Some nice views of the rover but is really a mossy forest trail.

6 months ago

Nice stroll on a rainy Washington day. Didn’t see anyone else, loud and fast river to your side nearly the entire way. Finishing out at Murphy’s Creek was a bit disappointing, but you get what you get. A few downed trees and only one is a little tough to climb over, other wise a nice 2 hours in nature

8 months ago

Good trail for kids. Not too long. No switchbacks. Very flat. Trail was well groomed and no trash.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

It was a Good hike. No switch backs. the end of the trail is a surprise..

Saturday, July 08, 2017

easy trail, great for all levels. The beauty when you are out there is indescribable. This will be a regular trail for us to visit.

nature trips
Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Great day to take the dog for a walk. A little over 6 miles total. Started from the north parking area. Flat well maintained trail.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Nice secluded hike, with little in & out traffic or inclines. Perfect for beginners, kids & dogs. Well maintained trail following the Sauk River. Perfect for a calm day hike!! Enjoyed the trail & beautiful scenery.

Friday, May 13, 2016

Crew working on the trail today clearing the last of the down tree blockages. Beautiful day. Beautiful hike. The dog loves it. Other than the 3-person work crew, I only saw one other person on the trail today.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

As of 4/10 the trail has many large trees down from the heavy rain and wind over the Fall/Winter. Some are easy to navigate over or around. Others not so much. We were done with our hike this time about a mile in by an impassable tree with two dogs with us. Be aware before you head out and plan accordingly.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Love this hike! Easy, very well maintained, family friendly and above all...gorgeous!

Tuesday, September 01, 2015

We've gone twice now, and LOVE IT! It's VERY easy. For the most part flat. The river is visible for a good portion of the hike, with a few makeshift trail points down to it. A little buggy in parts. Some trailrunners. Haven't run into any dogs yet on the trail, other than my own. It seems to be very lightly used, and I can't imagine why. It's well maintained, and a beautiful hike. Easy to access, ample parking, at either the "beginning" or the "end" to choose how to do this hike as you'd like. No pass required.

This last weekend we hiked it as the fires raged on just to the east of there, and covered the entire area in smoke. The trees and river helped to filter a lot out.

Friday, July 31, 2015

Decided on a whim to go for an easy hike yesterday and I'm glad that i chose this one. No gain and no loss along the river. Walked out to the rocks to dip my feet in the cool water while I rested. Looking for something relaxing and easy then this is your trail

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Stop looking for another beginners/out-of-shape/romantic getaway trail. This is it; my emerald green & steel blue sparkling gem.

The trail itself is semi-soft, no rocks and not compressed dirt-into-shale, like other trails. Perfect for my sore feet and Asics running shoes. I carry a 40lb backpack for endurance training and rough terrain really taxes me. This trail was the perfect blend of level and soft that makes me want to bring everyone I've ever known and show off my find!

Best trail weather: ~72F and partly cloudy. Most of this trail is 15 yards from the river to your left. As such, there are times you're hiking exposed, and others you're hiking in semi-dense forest. I don't tolerate heat well. YMMV.

View my track for this trail under my profile for 10+ photos. This is the 1st and only trail I've rated 5 stars.

Google Maps location for "Old Sauk Trail" is exactly accurate for the trailhead. Pull over at the yellow and brown national forest sign (Old Sauk) and there's only 1 trail to follow.

There's a gas station and 24hr restroom in Darrington. Emergency: From the trail, turn right to walk along Mountain Loop Hwy to Clear Creek Rd for 22mins to reach the nearest houses.

Monday, May 25, 2015

This is a great hike for all ages! But there were a lot of bugs.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

This is one of our family's favorite hikes. I bring dog + three teenagers. It's an easy walk and lovely.

Saturday, August 09, 2014

Came back for the second time. Was a little hotter than I expected, but the handful of water views were cooling. Driving through the Oso construction site was jaw dropping. Go spend some money in Darrington. They need it!

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

We arrived at the trailhead about 9:45, three humans and two dogs. We were the only people in the snow covered parking lot. Upon seeing the snow, the dogs went BONKERS!

This is a really nice little trail with virtually no elevation gain. Lots of tree coverage. Would probably be a good summer hike as well. I was hoping to let the dogs off leash, but felt the river was a little too "raging" for off leash shenanigans.

We only saw one other group of hikers, four humans and two dogs. The dogs (all Labs) had a great time meeting and greeting each other. A fun time was had by all.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Nice maintained trail with easy parking. Great place to do some flat walking anytime of the year!

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Nothing too special but very easy and pretty. Can view river often and plenty of ways to get down to it. The trail gets pretty narrow at times and so you're walking through spider webs very often!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Very few people, but good facilities. Bathroom at trailhead nearest "Interpretive" trail. Not much interpreting , but very nice gravel road for 1 mile loop. The rest of the trail is a narrow dirt one with minor elevation changes. Not much to see if you are used to the NW trees, although there are some river views.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Very pretty! Not too many people out first thing in the morning. Path is clear and follows the river. No climbs, lovely for beginners or those just looking for a stroll.

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