Gold Creek Pond is an ADA-accessible paved loop hike around a picturesque mountain pond at Snoqualmie Pass. It is the perfect hike for small children, who can walk unassisted the whole route, for parents pushing strollers and for people in wheelchairs. It's also a good leg stretcher for folks who have been driving a long time and need a break.
Snow shoe during the winter, hike or jog during the summer.
There is an ADA approved trail which loops around the pond providing opportunities for people of all ages and abilities.
Drive Interstate 90 to Exit 54, 2 miles east of the Snoqualmie Pass summit. Exit I-90, turn north, crossing under the freeway. A few hundred feet north of the highway interchange, turn right onto a narrow paved road (FR 4832) and drive east parallel to the freeway for 1 mile. Turn left on Gold Creek Road (142). Watch out for a few potholes on the unimproved forest road. Turn left in 0.3 mile onto the paved road and into the Gold Creek Pond parking lot.
KCT is a small non-profit organization that seeks public funding to manage projects aimed at correcting or compensating for environmental damage. KCT is asserting that creation of Gold Creek Pond is the major cause of late summer de-watering of Gold Creek that creates a barrier to spawning bull trout.
However, it is well-documented that Gold Creek dewatered in the 1960s, at least a decade before the Pond was constructed. The major cause of dewatering is much more likely to be climate change, which has reduced local snowpack by nearly half over the last 50 years and has decreased flow in many Cascade mountain creeks. Even environmental engineers contracted by KCT have commented that filling the pond would not re-water the creek.
Gold Creek Pond is on the site that supplied gravel for I-90 construction between 1978 and 1984. Since then it has been restored by government agencies, non-profit organizations and hundreds of volunteers. It is now an environment that supports thousands of trees and wildflowers, birds, beaver, elk, deer, bear and many smaller animals. The Pond reflects an iconic vista of the Cascades easily accessible to thousands of people each year of all ages, abilities and backgrounds.
Filling the pond would destroy this ecosystem. It would require moving at least 50,000 dump truck loads of material into the pond over multiple construction seasons. Filling the Pond could be viewed as the opposite of a restoration project. It would cause substantial terrestrial and aquatic damage --- all at high cost of public dollars but without convincing benefit to fish or wildlife, Gold Creek, or the human community.
If you wish to help save the Pond, write to the Forest Service and agencies that might support or fund this project. The Pond is on US Forest Service land administered by Michelle Capp, District Ranger of the Cle Elum Ranger District. She will have a major role in the decision on this project and welcomes comments.
As a citizen, this land is your land. Let Michelle Capp know how you feel about your Pond.
Michelle Capp, District Ranger, Cle Elum Ranger District
803 W. Second Street, Cle Elum, WA 98922
Friends of Gold Creek Pond