3 Best Sunday Drives Near Auburn, WA
After a long work week, a phone that won’t quit buzzing, and a household full of chores, sometimes the healthiest thing to do is go for a nice, leisurely Sunday drive. Escape the chaos of the weekdays and throw yourself into the relaxation of a nice weekend away. Here are our top three picks for Sunday drive routes and destinations around Auburn, Washington.
Mowich Lake via WA-165
If you’re looking for a short but glorious Sunday drive, head out to Mowich Lake. Located in the foothills of Washington’s stunning Mount Rainier, Mowich Lake is a peaceful little spot shrouded in mystery. Surrounded by towering pines and blanketed with mist in the early morning, Mowich Lake is the perfect spot for a picnic, a hike, or a bit of fishing.
From Auburn, head south on WA-165 before jumping on the WA-410 East. Pick up WA-165 South until you come upon Mowich Lake Road. The entire drive should take less than an hour and 40 minutes one way.
Naches via WA-410
For a longer excursion, head two-and-a-half hours east to Naches, Washington. From Auburn, take the WA-410 East. You’ll cross through Mount Rainier National Park and take in all of the beautiful landscapes surrounding the mountain. Be on the lookout for wildlife, and don’t be afraid to lower your speed around the twisty-turning roads. There’s no hurry, and safety is paramount.
As you traverse WA-410 East, you’ll come upon several small towns. Enumclaw is known for its picturesque sights and photo ops. Before Greenwater, you’ll drive along the crisp White River before heading into the Cascades. Next, you’ll find a series of turnouts where you can capture Mount Rainier from all angles. Once you reach Naches, you’ll notice a change in topography as the landscape becomes drier and more rugged. Grab lunch at Gold Creek Station in Naches before heading home for more lovely views.
While trips to Mowich Lake and Naches require you to travel there and back along the same highway, the Cascade Loop gives you unique views throughout your entire trip. The Cascade Loop is 440 miles of road surrounded by all different types of scenery. From Auburn, you’ll travel north on the WA-167 to Interstate 405. At the junction with Interstate 5, continue northwest on WA-525.
Your excitement and the Cascade Loop begin as you take the ferry from Mukilteo to Clinton, cross Whidbey Island, and follow the WA-525 to WA-20. You’ll begin heading east on WA-20, which will take you around the north face of Round Mountain, through the towns of Rockport and Twisp. At Twisp, you’ll head south on WA-153, which will take you past Lake Chelan on the west and the Columbia River on the east.
When WA-153 merges with WA-97 South, you’ll have a chance to get up close with either Lake Chelan via the WA-97 Alt Route or Chelan Falls via WA-97. Whichever route you choose, you’ll have a stunning view of the Columbia River all the way until Wenatchee, at which point you’ll head west on WA-2 through the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest.
Depending on how long you’d like to spend on your Sunday drive, one of these routes is sure to please. Be sure to try them all and tell us all about your adventures when you return!
Image via Pixabay