Weather & Traffic

We strongly recommend checking weather, pass and traffic conditions!

TRAFFIC

  • Traffic can be surprisingly terrible on Highway 2, at it’s worst in the summer months, especially weekends, as returning vacationers all travel west towards the city and cars back up at the few traffic lights in Sultan (click here for a webcam). There are no good shortcuts, but you can avoid the bulk of it by either getting on the road by 10 am, or wait until it dies down after 6 pm. If available, you can arrange to pay for an additional half day at your rental so you can relax by the river or in the hot tub until evening rather than stress in traffic. Expect long delays during the ski season if you’re leaving with the crowds at closing time.

WEATHER

  • WINTER: Make sure you are traveling with chains, AWD or 4WD, and check pass conditions before crossing to make sure it’s open without restrictions. To help determine where the snow is, the town of Gold Bar is only at 197 ft in elevation. Skykomish is at 900 ft. The base of the ski hill is 4000 ft, mid-mountain is about 5000 ft.
  • SPRING: Our area is known for it’s excellent spring skiing, so visitors should continue to follow winter protocols. Once it starts warming up and the snow begins melting, the Skykomish river levels rise making it unpredictable and dangerous, so please stay away from the river banks this time of year!
  • SUMMER: Suddenly it gets hot! Historically, weather in the Pacific NW was temperate and so most homes were not built with A/C. If this is important to you, please check with us to be sure a home has it. Otherwise, we provide fans and recommend opening windows at night. By late summer the river can be very low in places- but check out our Area Info page to find out where the best swimming holes are.
  • FALL: Early fall is gorgeous, and an excellent time to enjoy our late warm weather yet avoid the crowds on the hiking trails and river. Late fall brings more wind and rain- the perfect season for warming those bones by a wood stove or in the hot tub, but also potential for power outages. Typically, power is restored very quickly (we have excellent utility teams; PSE if you’re staying in Baring or further east or PUD if staying west of Baring), and properties are stocked with emergency lighting and most have wood heat so guests can still be comfortable during these moments. If you don’t want to stick out a power outage, guests can check out and re-book their stay at the same property within a year (we do not offer refunds in cases of power outages).