After breakfast at a very small diner along Highway 20, Kendall and I were off to spend the day exploring. We stopped at a cool bridge near Newhalem, that looked down onto a huge ravine and the Gorge Creek waterfall. The bridge is grated so you could see through and to the creek hundreds of feet below.
We continued to drive alongside the Skagit River as we passed Diablo. Just outside of Diablo, along Hwy 20, there is a road veering off to the north called Diablo Dam Rd. If the gate is open, I highly recommend driving down the road. It is a “one vehicle at a time” road, extremely narrow at parts (no Airstream or Trailers allowed) but beyond worth it. It will take you to a one way street that crosses right over the top of, you guessed it, the Diablo Dam. What makes this road really cool is the fact that it is not a main thoroughfare so you would have to purposely drive to it in order to see it, thus cutting down on the tourists everywhere. When we crossed, there was no traffic and no one in sight.
After exploring unmarked trails and playing at the water’s edge we drove back over the bridge and continued east. We found a lesser known trailhead further east of the Diablo Dam.
The Thunder Knob Trail crosses over a river and then winds its way up into the mountain side. Once you hit the peak, there are several places you can stop to rest and catch your breath. The views are amazing and they look down onto Diablo Lake and the Thunder Arm. If you are driving east through the Cascades this is a must see hike.
Next Up… Exploring the Cascade Wilderness before pushing east towards Spokane