Reminder: Rattlesnake Lake, Trail, Ledge still CLOSED due to social distancing concerns

UPDATE | May 10th: Police have now installed an electronic reader board at THE I-90 exit 32 off-ramp reminding people that the Rattlesnake Lake Recreation area remains closed. Read our original article below explaining why the popular area has not reopened, while others outdoor areas have.


Last week Governor Inslee announced the partial reopening state parks and public lands for outdoor recreation, as well as golf, on May 5th.

This includes day use of state parks and state lands managed by the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) – and hiking trails, seasonal hunting and fishing, etc. on those lands.

On Thursday, April 30th, Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) – which owns and manages the popular Rattlesnake Lake Recreation area in North Bend – said it will NOT be reopening on May 5th like some state-managed outdoor areas.

Seattle Public Utilities stated:

At this time, Rattlesnake Lake Recreation Area (RSLRA) will remain closed to continue protecting the public as well as staff who manage the watershed.

During favorable weather, more than 2,000 people each day visit RSLRA, but there is limited opportunity to physical distance safely while hiking the trail and enjoying its outstanding views.

Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) looks forward to reopening the RSLRA in the future.

During the sunny weekend of March 21st, Rattlesnake Lake Rec area became very crowded, with drone photos circulating social media showing Rattlesnake Ledge filled with people. The following Monday the governor’s Stay Home, Stay Healthy order was issued, the state closed all outdoor recreation areas and SPU closed Rattlesnake Lake.

Rattlesnake Lake in North Bend, WA. Photo: Melissa Grant
Hikers atop Rattesnake Ledge, 3/21/20. Photo: Twitter

Comments are closed.


  • This seems very poorly thought out. So now the crowds relocate from Rattlesnake to Mt Si, Teneriffe, Mailbox etc. Feel bad for the residents that live around those parts. Even if those trails open the DNR should be working to reduce the ‘total’ number of visitors to allow for safe distancing. The Mt Si. parking lot is the very definition of a ‘large gathering’.

    1. Maybe. All of those other hikes you listed are quite a bit more difficult and nearly twice the distance of rattlesnake. Theres also Rattlesnake lake which isn’t that big and doesn’t even require a hike to get to.

  • Unfortunately, there will always be people who think rules don’t apply to them and will hike this trail anyway (and others still closed).

  • Did anyone from that day at Rattlesnake die or go to the hospital? It’s not like Apple and Google aren’t sharing location data and shadow tracing for the Governor.

  • Does the Mayor of Seattle even know where North Bend is ? By closing the road 1/2 mile from the lake, the Mayor also closed the Cascade to Poulouse trail (Iron horse Trail) which is open for day use, according to the Governor and Washington State parks.
    The social distancing concern pictured at Rattlesnake ledge on March 21, is really not different than shopping at Costco on March 21, compared to 6 weeks later. People have learned how to keep apart, for the most part. Typical Seattle politics, a bureaucrat knows better than the people of the outlying communities.


  • Living Snoqualmie