30.3 miles
7,798 ft
-7,781 ft
2 miles
High Point

Angel's Staircase is a physically demanding, epic loop that takes you far from civilization, so bring plenty of food and water and make sure that you carry tools that you know how to use. The rewards are fantastic views of jagged mountains and into beautiful alpine basins filled with flowers, trees, and small lakes.

This route starts at Foggy Dew Trailhead as the Crater Creek Trailhead is undergoing maintenance until Oct 15th 2018

Detailed Description
Angel's Staircase (Foggy Dew Entrance) is a 30 mile moderately popular expert route located near Twisp Washington. This mountain bike only route and has a hard overall physical rating. This route includes 8 trails. This route climbs 7,798 ft with a max elevation of 8,091 ft then descends -7,781 ft.
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12 Reviews & Comments

  • + 1
dkscott (Sep 3, 2021 at 8:18)
Trail Summit Trail
Yep, pretty beat up. Phenomenal views and landscape, but the tread is a mess. It is still a necessary link for the Angel's Staircase loops, so still worth riding.
  • + 0
chcompanion (Oct 3, 2020 at 11:07)
  • + 1
freerideposer KCTS (Sep 27, 2019 at 7:59)
Trail Summit Trail
If you want to see what a horse blown out trail is ride this. Troughs 1.5- 2 feet deep, rooted sections 8 feet wide - what a mess. Horse sh*t.
  • + 1
ryansmo (Aug 11, 2019 at 18:58)
Don’t ride up this. It’s almost all bike pushing. And I’m fitter than the average bear.
  • + 1
goatzebra (Jul 12, 2019 at 6:41)
Good, long techy climb, fast and long descent. Paired with the Angels Staircase makes for an epicly long day that ends with an amazing ~45min descent.
  • + 1
goatzebra (Jul 12, 2019 at 6:41)
Good, long techy climb, fast and long descent. Paired with the Angels Staircase makes for an epicly long day that ends with an amazing ~45min descent.
  • + 1
MisterDirtPaws (Oct 20, 2018 at 9:38)
This is an amazing, but tough backcountry route. We did this in September 2018 as the fall colors were off the charts. Expect lots of hike a bike on legacy hiking trails. Merchants Basin is gorgeous, and we made the side trip to Sunrise Lake. If I did this ride again, I might pack lightweight trail running shoes for the long hike-a-bike sections to the high elevation point. (Extended hiking in hard soled MTB shoes was rough and slow).

It's slow going, as with many backcountry epics. Be mentally and physically prepared for a long, but stellar day and you'll be fine. There were definitely times on the hike-a-bike sections, where we were questioning the route and checking the map.

The other note is that if I had to do it again, I might skip the Merchant's Basin section and ride up to Cooney lake. Merchants basin was slow going... still epic.
  • + 2
rpinney206 (Aug 3, 2018 at 7:51)
what's up with the trail head closure? is it just parking that is closed? Seems weird that access to the entire trail is restricted. The foggy dew entrance adds a lot of climbing to an already big day.
  • + 1
boxxerace TRAILFORKS (Sep 19, 2018 at 8:09)
@rpinney206 it Appears the USFS has reopened the trailhead and trail as of Monday this week. I'm quite familiar with the route up Foggy, it's chunky in places! If you hear of anything else or talk to a ranger, please let me know so we can keep the record correct for everyone.
  • + 2
rpinney206 (Sep 19, 2018 at 8:44)
@boxxerace I talked to the ranger yesterday and they said that construction didn't start because of fire danger and that the trail head is currently open. Construction will begin this Monday however so this is the last weekend it will be open, from what I was told.
  • + 1
boxxerace TRAILFORKS (Sep 19, 2018 at 8:52)
That seems to jive with what I just read here: www.fs.usda.gov/detail/okawen/alerts-notices/?cid=stelprdb5371608

NOTICE: Crater Creek Trailhead will be closed for trailhead improvements starting SEPTEMBER 24, 2018. The Crater Creek Trail remains open at this time, however, access will be from the Foggy Dew Trailhead starting SEPTEMBER 24.

Bummer. Up Foggy it is!
  • + 2
jefe (May 9, 2018 at 13:58)
Amazing scenery aside, this is one of the best descents in WA. There's that beautiful part of sharing trails motos occasionally ride where the trail actually flows for a 2 wheel thing (unlike hiking trails) and there's always just enough of a rut to give you support in every corner. The one word for this trail is FAST! You will be gaping 30 ft out off of 6 inch bumps the whole way without even trying. What a hoot the perfect end to a mega ride!... writing this I guess I should warn you not to kill anyone, be careful around blind corners (luckily most of the trail has great sightlines), don't be the dick that kills someone else's experience; it's just a few corners you have to ease up on to stay safe, life's not a race... despite what Strava tells you.


  • Riding area
  • Primary Activity
    Mountain Bike
  • Difficulty rating
    Black Diamond
  • Route Type
  • eBike Allowed
  • Bike type
    AM, XC
  • Physical rating
More Stats for Angel's Staircase (Foggy Dew Entrance) mountain bike route
  • Altitude min
    3,576 ft
  • Altitude start
    3,576 ft
  • Altitude end
    3,593 ft
  • Grade max
  • Grade min
  • Distance climb
    15 miles
  • Distance down
    15 miles
  • Distance flat
    1,549 ft
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Recent Trail Reports Along Route

Eagle Lake Trail
Jul 11, 2022 @ 10:34am
Jul 11, 2022
Clear of downfall. (Thanks moto folks!) There are some snow patches below the pass but nothing unmanageable
Foggy Dew Trail
Jul 10, 2022 @ 11:18am
Jul 10, 2022
All dry and cleared of down trees
Martin Creek Trail
Jul 10, 2022 @ 11:18am
Jul 10, 2022
Significant snow at the top of the climb still. Quite a bit of water runoff in the tread on the top 1/4 of the trail as well. Two downed trees. Bottom 3/4 of the trail is in perfect shape though!
Martin Creek Trail
Jul 10, 2022 @ 11:18am
Jul 10, 2022
Numerous snow patches. Passable, but it’s a wet slog. I’d give it a week or two. One down tree
Merchants Basin Trail
Nov 7, 2021 @ 6:35am
Nov 7, 2021
more reports »
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