Methow recreation hub

Our Methow recreation hub

There are many ways to explore the Methow in any season. Choose an activity below to learn more and connect with other organizations in the valley.

Hiking & Trail Running

The Methow Valley has thousands of miles of hiking and running trails for every age and ability; casual strolls along the banks of the Methow River, flower-filled meadows with stunning views of the North Cascades, or multi-day backpacking adventures in the Pasayten Wilderness.

Maps and guidebooks can be obtained from local Methow Valley businesses as well as the US Forest Service in Winthrop. Methow Trails can also provide summer trail maps and current trail conditions.

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The Methow Valley is quickly becoming a mountain bike destination, with hundreds of miles of well-maintained, easy-to-access singletrack, doubletrack, and Forest Service roads. Plan your next mountain bike adventure by checking out our summer trail map. For the most current trip reports, download the Trail Forks app.

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Hoseback riding

Bring your own horse or sign up for a guided ride once you arrive - the Methow has no shortage of trails to meet your equestrian goals. Valley-bottom trails follow the Methow River and offer cool shade mid summer, while higher-elevation trails allow you to explore alpine meadows and enjoy scenic vistas.

There are several Methow Valley outfitters that offer trail rides, chuck wagon breakfast outings, and even multi-day backcountry excursions into remote wilderness settings. Visit Winthrop Washington for a list of local outfitters.

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Cross-country skiing

With over 200 kilometers of perfectly groomed trails, you can find options for every ability and desire: gentle valley-bottom trails with kid-friendly loops, long-distance town-to-town and lodge-to-lodge ski options, or heart-pumping climbs that will challenge the most seasoned mountain athlete.

Methow Trails’ Nordic ski trail system is divided into four areas, all connected by the Methow Community Trail, which includes a suspension bridge crossing the Methow River, trailheads, and lodges along the way. There are four primary trailheads – Mazama, Winthrop, Sun Mountain and Cub Creek – and many smaller access points throughout the valley. Download the Methow Trails app for a live map and driving directions.

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Fat Biking

Fat bikes are specially-made bicycles that accommodate ultra-wide tires which can be run at very low pressure. The combination of very wide tires and less than ten pounds of pressure allows fat bikes to roll over soft, slippery surfaces like snow. Fat bikes are one of the fastest-growing segments of the bicycle industry, simply bundle up like you would for skiing and get out and ride!

Methow Cycle and Sport maintains an updated conditions page for fat bike trails. Conditions are assessed day by day, taking into account snow conditions and user compatibility. A valid Methow Trails Pass is required for all fat bike trails, except Big Valley (which is free) and the trails at Pearrygin Lake State Park (a Sno-Park pass is required). Fat bike day passes are $10, season passes are $50. If you have a ski day or annual pass, you are good to go for all uses.

Fat bikes are available for rent in Winthrop at Methow Cycle & Sport and Cascades Outdoor Store and in Mazama at Goat’s Beard Mountain Supplies. Reservations are recommended! Methow Cycle & Sport also provides rack adaptors for customers who wish to transport rental fat bikes to the riding area of their choice.

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Ice Skating

The town of Winthrop is home to the Winthrop Rink, an outdoor ice rink, which was described by NHL Seattle as “heaven on ice.” The rink offers open skating, pick-up hockey, and figure skating every day of the winter. Check the ice schedule at the Winthrop Rink website. The Rink offers hockey pad rentals as well as ice skates and helmets. Day passes are affordable. The indoor, upstairs viewing room allows the non-skating members of your party to enjoy the experience from an indoor, comfortable vista.


Snowshoeing is a wonderful way to explore the gems of the Methow Valley in the winter. Our scenic, peaceful snowshoe trails wind their way throughout the entire trail network, with the highest concentration of trails out of the Sun Mountain area. 

Methow Trails has some shared-use trails, and many that are open exclusively to snowshoers. Check out our winter maps for full details on the exclusive and shared-use snowshoe trails from each trailhead. A $10 snowshoe trail pass is required. A ski pass will also grant access to snowshoe trails.

Snowshoes can be rented at any of the local gear shops.

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Alpine skiing and boarding

The Loup Loup Ski Bowl is located just 20 miles east of Twisp and offers 1,240 vertical feet of sunny Okanogan powder. "The Loup" boasts cut runs, a terrain park, quad chairlift, poma lift, rope tow, 23 kilometers of groomed Nordic ski trails, and a popular tubing hill. Try the new luge sledding hill!

Backcountry and heli skiing

Head up Highway 20 for access to a million acres of wilderness in the North Cascades, aka "The American Alps" – the most-glaciated peaks in the continental U.S. Connect with a local guide service for an unforgettable day in the mountains. For the ultimate lift-assist, North Cascades Heli offers one-day to four-day backcountry adventures.

Sledding and tubing

A winter wonderland experience in the Methow would not be complete without the simple pleasure of sledding. There is a popular sledding hill next to the Winthrop Rink and at the Loup Loup Ski Bowl. Have fun!


Snowmobiling in the Methow offers everything from high-elevation exploration to groomed riverside tours. The extensive terrain allows for all-day rides over exceptionally dramatic scenery. About half of Okanogan County's 384 miles of groomed snowmobile trails can be accessed from the Methow Valley. Snowmobile rentals are available from several local businesses.