Top Ten Alternative National and State Parks

North Cascades National Park, Washington (Instead of Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming)
North Cascades National Park, Washington
Epic mountain vistas in North Cascades National Park (courtesy, National Park Service)

9. North Cascades National Park, Washington
(Instead of Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming)
There's no explanation for why so few people make it up to North Cascades National Park—fewer than 19,000 went in 2008 (compared to the four million annual visitors Grand Teton sees). It's only a three-hour drive from Seattle into the heart of this remarkable range, packed with rocky pinnacles and wide alpine valleys cut by broad, roaring rivers. Its saw-toothed peaks match the Tetons, and with 400 miles of trails, this relatively deserted wilderness is an oversized playground for outdoors lovers. Monster waterfalls plunging from sheer rock cliffs and more than 300 glaciers—about ten times the number in Glacier National Park—make for great sightseeing. And peaks with names like Mount Terror and Desolation Peak (up for a challenge, anyone?) offer world-class mountaineering.

GORP's Noth Cascades National Park Guide



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