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Visit Lake Chelan in Winter | Washington State Park

Lake Chelan in winter is a unique experience at one of the Pacific Northwest's most popular lakes. You can visit in the winter and enjoy the same stunning views but with several inches of snow.

Lake Chelan is one of the largest lakes in the United States. It includes 33,344 acres, 4.6 cubic miles of water, and reaches depths of over 1,400'. It's also a stunning 50.5 miles long. It's certainly one of the best lakes near Seattle.

Lake Chelan in Winter

The lake is visible from several locations throughout the Pacific Northwest, including from the summit of Sahale Peak, accessed via the Cascade Pass Trail, and Hoodoo Peak, which are miles away from one another.

Lake Chelan in Winter

Did you know you can visit Lake Chelan in winter? The state park is open 24 hours a day throughout the year unless the snow gets particularly intense (make sure to check ahead of your visit to ensure it's open!)

It's a year-round destination that provides winter visitors with a variety of activities that you're sure to enjoy. This includes snow tubing, skiing, snowboarding, and cross-country runs. There are over 70 acres of winter landscape to enjoy along the 50.5-mile lake.

What to Do at Lake Chelan in the Winter?

So you're visiting Lake Chelan in the winter and aren't big on polar bear dips; what do you do? Luckily the state park and the lake's surrounding wilderness are wonderful places to explore the Pacific Northwest.

Lake Chelan Camping
An open campsite in Lake Chelan State Park

Winter Sports at Lake Chelan

Winter sports at Lake Chelan are a great way to spend your time. Whether you're into skiing, hiking, snowboarding, or cross-country skiing, you're unlikely to ever run out of things to do.

The Echo Ridge Nordic Ski Area is one of the most popular areas, with over 25 miles of maintained terrain. In Echo Valley, you can enjoy 70 acres and 900 feet of skiing. You can enjoy:

  • Skiing

  • Snowmobiling

  • Cross-country skiing

  • Snowshoeing

  • Sledding

If you loved visiting Lake Chelan, we highly recommend you check out some of the other Glacial Lakes that Washington has to offer!

Wine Tasting or Spa Days

Tired of spending all day in the cold? Lake Chelan is surrounded by several resorts that provide relaxing day activities that get you prepared for your next day out. Check out Lake Chelan Massage and Spa as a wonderful diversion from the snowy landscape.

Chelan Winterfest

If you're visiting in mid-January, you can enjoy Winterfest. This is a special winter festival at Lake Chelan that includes lights, sculptures, and fireworks. You can enjoy activities in the towns of Chelan and Mason.


Shopping in Chelan

Another option if you're tired of spending time in the snow is to go shopping in downtown Chelan. There are a number of cute stores and boutiques to explore and a great small-town feel.

Enjoy the Peace and Quiet

You don't have to be on the move all the time. Make sure to enjoy walking along the shore and taking advantage of the lack of crowds. It's so much harder to enjoy the simple beauty of the state park when there are people everywhere!

Check out some of that Lake Chelan magic here:

Have you been to Lake Chelan in the winter? Let us know how it went!

Go Camping

Yes, you can camp at Lake Chelan in the winter! The campground at the state park is far, far less crowded, and you're likely to have your pick of sites! Register for a campsite online or do it when you show up at the entrance.

Lake Chelan Camping
Lake Chelan picnic table and campsite

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