Visitors exploring Packwood will appreciate the rugged beauty of the Tatoosh Range and surrounding mountains. Packwood is located between Mount Rainier, Mount Adams, and Mount St. Helens. With an abundance of public lands to explore and a myriad of outdoor recreation opportunities, it’s easy to see why this mountain community is especially popular in the winter and summer seasons.
Explore Packwood by Season
Spring in Packwood
March feels like winter. In March, the average temperatures can hover from below freezing up to 37 degrees. April typically warms up, with an average daytime high of 44 degrees. The annual Packwood Mountain Festival is usually held in late April. By the time the famous Packwood Flea Market rolls around Memorial Weekend, temperatures tend to get up to the mid-50s. Spring is a good time of year for bird and wildlife watching. There’s a local herd of Roosevelt elk that likes to spend time grazing in town.
Summer in Packwood
Early-summer June weather can bring about temperatures in the mid-60s. July and August are typically comfortable in the low 70s and 80s. Summer is a prime season to hike, mountain bike, fish, and kayak. Explore along the banks of the glacial-fed Cowlitz River and discover the trails at Packwood Lake, Backbone Lake Trail, and the Gifford Pinchot National Forest. This is also a great time of year to take a gorgeous drive along the White Pass Scenic Byway.
Fall in Packwood
Welcome in the autumnal season by attending the annual Labor Day Weekend Packwood Flea Market. Don’t forget to wear layers because this time of year, the weather during the months of September and October brings cooler temperatures, with daytime highs in the 50s to 60s and overnight lows cooling off to the 40s and 30s. This is the time of year to forage for morel mushrooms and huckleberries.
Winter in Packwood
This is the season to bundle up. The temperatures are often in the 30s. Visitors travel to Packwood each winter to ski, snowboard, snowshoe, cross-country ski, and tube at White Pass Ski Resort and Nordic Center.
Visitors seeking dispersed camping can find spots along Skate Creek. Ohanapecosh Campground in Mount Rainier National Park Please note that the La Wis Wis Campground, a few miles out of town in Randle, will be closed in 2023 for renovations. The popular Randle campground should open in 2024.
Packwood is a short ten-mile drive to the Stevens Canyon Entrance of Mount Rainier National Park. This entrance provides easy access to the popular Silver Falls trail at Ohanapecosh, part of Mount Rainier National Park. Approximately 2 hours from Seattle, Washington; and 2 and a half hours from Portland, Oregon.
Need to get from Packwood to Ashford? There are two options: Stevens Canyon Road and Skate Creek Road, both of which operate seasonally during the summer and early fall months. In 2023, be sure to check the road status page on the official Mount Rainier National Park website for construction updates on Stevens Canyon Road.
Packwood sits on the traditional lands of the Upper Cowlitz, Taidnapam, or Taitnapam people. To learn more about the history of these people and the area, please visit the White Pass Country Museum.
For more information on this community, please contact the Packwood Visitor Center at (360) 492-7365.