Preston-Snoqualmie Trail

Trail Map

Description Suggest an Edit

The 6.5-mile paved Preston-Snoqualmie Trail meanders through Snoqualmie Valley, with a short roadside section and crossing. It crosses a set of unpaved yet accommodating switchbacks that replace a trestle from the old Seattle, Lake Shore & Eastern Railway. This inserts a brief walk that works fine with a road bike.

The main trail leaves the Preston trailhead on a gradual, steady coast to the Raging River Valley. Preston is a historic mill town named after railway official William Preston. The area offers quiet distractions, such as an inviting grassy pullout and bench and a bridge, framed by evergreens and cedars above and the ravine below. The trail grade increases and suddenly curves sharply, steeply, and briefly toward the road at 2.5 miles. A final leveling out allows a semicivilized descent.

A crosswalk and sign guide you across speedy Preston–Fall City Road to one block of separated trail, which then takes you left onto SE 68th Street to a mossy bridge overlooking the river. This pleasant, short street rises to the road (with cement barriers for 0.25 mile). Abandon the road to welcome the attractive configuration of switchbacks. Climb 80 feet on grass and gravel to a well-placed bench. This older paved trail hosts a unique log chair and a bridge high above a creek.

Next stop is the Lake Alice trailhead and picnic area at 3.5 miles. Parking at this trailhead offers a trip on a gentle, paved grade in either direction. From here, the trail continues 1.8 miles across Lake Alice Road. Three benches at the end of the trail provide the perfect spot to enjoy a densely framed view across Snoqualmie Falls and the river to the impressive Salish Lodge. The dense foliage of summer obstructs the view of the 270-foot waterfall, so you might want to check out this trail in fall and winter.

Parking and Trail Access

To reach the Preston-Snoqualmie Trailhead, take Interstate 90 to Exit 22. At the end of the ramp, head east; then turn right at the T onto SE High Point Way. After 0.4 mile, turn left onto SE 87th Place.

To reach the Lake Alice trailhead, continue 3.5 miles past SE 87th Place on SE High Point Way, which becomes Preston–Fall City Road SE. Turn right onto SE 47th Street/Lake Alice Road SE; the parking lot will be 0.8 mile uphill on the right. The final 1.8-mile section begins across the road.

Reviews

A mid winter visit

   January, 2013 by lauckner

I was visiting Western WA in December when it rains most days, so it was difficult to find a day when a trail walk might be enjoyable. However after 2 weeks of practically uninterrupted rain, the New Years Eve weather forecast was quite promising. As ...read more

nice family ride

   June, 2011 by billinseattle

Agree with everything TrailBear says. We rode this in June with 8-yo and 10-yo kids, and it was perfect. Mom and dad were riding mountain bikes with 1.5" slick tires, the kids riding with knobbies. Worked fine. The seven switchbacks were a pain, but so ...read more

TRAILBEAR HEADS FOR THE VIEW: The Preston Snoqualmie Trail and Falls Overlook

   July, 2010 by trailbear

TRAILBEAR HEADS FOR THE VIEW: The Preston Snoqualmie Trail and Falls Overlook 7.15.10 The Preston-Snoqualmie is two trails in one, separated by a deep ravine, the Preston-Fall City Rd. and the Raging River. (Yes, it does rage. Its personal best ...read more