Carter Mountain | Hike of the Week

Hike of the Week - Okanogan County Tourism Council

carter mountain

Tonasket, WA

Best Places to Go Hiking in Eastern Washington Credit: Jason Wettsein | WDFW

Carter Mountain Tonasket Wa


Located 7 miles south of Tonasket, the Carter Mountain wildlife unit includes over 2,240 acres of federal shrub-steppe, dry grasslands, and mixed conifer forest. Known for its abundant wildlife and rich diversity of plants, the preserve is also home to golden eagles and a wide variety of migratory birds. Private property borders a significant portion of the Carter Mountain Unit, so please respect private property and heed the posted signs where vehicle access is not permitted.


A variety of easy to moderate hiking trails range all over the terrain, varying from broad valleys to rugged, rocky hillsides and provide a host of out-and-back or loop trails. There are not, however, any developed restrooms or other facilities on the preserve at this time.


Bring your binoculars! Carter Mountain supports a thriving population of black bears, mule deer, cougars, and bobcats. Expect to see rattle snakes from April to October. Right now is a good time to explore the area, with less risk of snakes. But be sure to keep your eye out just in case - you may end up being one of the first hikers to spot the lanky creature.

Find out more information about the Carter Mountain Wildlife Area Unit from Okanogan Country and the Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife's website!

Driving Directions

From Tonasket via North Pine Creek Rd – From downtown Tonasket, go west on 4th Ave across Okanogan River to the Hwy 7 Junction. Turn left (south) on Hwy 7 and proceed 1 mile to North Pine Creek Road. Turn right (west) and drive 5 ½ miles to a parking area on the left side of the road. Look for a reader board adjacent to the parking area. Or from Tonasket via Highway 97 – Drive south on Hwy 97 approximately 7 ¼ miles. Turn right onto the gravel road just past wide pull-out lined with poplar trees and proceed about 100 yards to the parking area on right. Do not drive uphill past signs – WDFW vehicle access only.

parking pass

Discover or Vehicle Access Pass

Photos by: Justin Haug | WDFW

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