Located right along Highway 2, just west of Stevens Pass, Deception Falls is a perfect pit-stop for families and hikers of all ages. Here you'll find a covered picnic area, paved trails, toilets, and a water wonderland full of viewing decks and sturdy bridges. Oh, and of course, the impressive 60' high tumbling cascade of Deception Falls.
There are three main hiking options for Deception Falls. The first is to go directly from the parking lot to Deception Falls – at barely one-hundred yards away, you can hear it rumbling as soon as you open your car door. The second option is to take a paved quarter-mile loop-trail through the woods that finishes at the falls. The third option is what we show in our video: a 0.75 mile loop-hike along the lower trail that passes both Tye River and Deception Creek on the way to the finale at the falls.
To do the third option, begin at the trailhead near the toilets and walk clockwise along the paved loop for one-tenth of a mile. At the signed junction, head left and drop down into cool forest on a sturdy dirt path. Cross a bridge over a small tributary to Tye River at 0.25 miles and reach the convergence of Deception Creek into Tye River at 0.35 miles. Continuing further, you'll soon reach the first of two viewing platforms that overlook Deception Creek. Each features impressive displays of runoff, especially in early summer.
At 0.5 miles, reach the end of the loop. Deception Creek has jumped its natural levee and a small creek flows right across the trail. Use caution here if the bridge is out. Some may prefer to turn back, but with a little creativity, most are able to pass through.
Finally, at 0.65 miles, reach a bridge that spans Deception Creek at the base of the falls. You'll feel the spray of water from the 60' tall falls, which seems more like a powerful set of rapids at your feet then a sheer drop. The trail continues up and under the highway to a final viewing platform on the south side of the highway.
Permits & Tips
No passes required. Toilets are available at the parking lot. The trail usually opens for visitors on Memorial Day weekend. There's several sturdy picnic tables and a covered area for enjoying lunch before or after you check out the falls and trails. Stroller use is possible on the upper trail. Come in early summer for the most impressive runoff. Use caution on the trail when crossing any water, and obey closure signs where posted.
How to get there
Deception Falls is located on the north side of Highway 2 at milepost 56. The parking lot is clearly signed from the highway.