Centennial Trail: 60 Miles Of Flat, Paved Training Trail

Centennial Trail: 60 Miles Of Flat, Paved Training Trail

 Photo Compliments of Robert Ashworth

Photo Compliments of Robert Ashworth

If you’re getting ready for the Seattle to Portland (200 plus mile bike ride) then the Centennial Trail is a perfect place to start. You need to be in shape to ride at about 7 miles per hour and cover 100 miles each day of the two day STP ride. The trail is 30 miles one way, 60 miles if you go to the end and come back. The trail is paved, relatively flat, and has multiple spots for breaks and bathroom stops.  As an added bonus if you do unusually well you can treat yourself in Snohomish at one of the funky little restaurants on 1st street.

Centennial Trail

Photo Compliments of Robert Ashworth

The Snohomish County Centennial Trail currently runs for 31.5 miles from trailhead in the city of Snohomish to the Skagit County line just north of Bryant. This popular trail (over 400,000 use the trail each year) is open to cyclists, pedestrians, joggers and equestrians (adjacent natural surface trail) and is accessible for all levels of physical ability.  This trail is usable almost 12 months a year.

The trail is built on the old Burlington-Northern railroad line. Development of the trail began in 1989 during the state’s centennial, the source of the trail name, Centennial Trail.

Centennial Trail Overview

The trail begins as a continuation of the Snohomish River Trail at the intersection of Maple Avenue and Pine Street in the city of Snohomish, named of course the Snohomish trailhead. The route travels northeast along Maple Avenue, which becomes Machias Road past the Snohomish city limits, and the Pilchuck River to the Pilchuck trailhead, located south of an underpass of U.S. Route 2. The trail continues north into Machias, where it passes through the Machias and 20th Street trailheads before turning northwest as the trail approaches Lake Stevens and an underpass of Washington State Route 92 and its trailhead. The Centennial Trail travels towards Lake Cassidy, where it passes the Rhododendron trailhead, and the Lake Cassidy Wetlands Park trailhead. The trail continues northwest under 84th Street and Washington State Route 9, the former of which has its own trailhead. The route begins paralleling 67th Avenue NE as it enters the Quilceda Creek watershed at the Armar Road trailhead south of Arlington. The Centennial Trail and 67th Avenue enter Arlington city limits at an intersection with Washington State Route 531 before the roadway continues north into Downtown Arlington after an underpass with Washington State Route 9. The route continues through Downtown Arlington along West Avenue before a former railroad trestle carries the trail across the Stillaguamish River and towards Bryant along Washington State Route 9. The Centennial Trail passes its final trailhead, the Nakashima Heritage Barn & Centennial Trail North, before ending at the Skagit County line south of Lake McMurray.

Centennial Trail

Trail Features

  1. Width: 10-foot wide multi-purpose paved trail ideal for biking, inline skating, a wonderful trail for wheelchairs and walkers, horseback riding, walking, and cross country skiing when snow permits
  2. Picnicking: Picnic shelters (refer to map for locations)
  3. Picnic Tables: Picnicking (refer to map for locations)
  4. Restrooms: Sanicans (refer to map for locations)
  5. Length: 31.5 miles of paved trail
  6. Conservation Corridor: Centennial Trail serves as a conservation corridor protecting sensitive and important natural and cultural resources
  7. Trail End Points: 1st St. near Cady Park (Snohomish) to Skagit County line near North Trailhead Park, west of Highway 9

Bear Alert

Washington State is not New York City. We share our world with black bears and they are occasionally spotted along the trail. If you are unfamiliar with black bears please read to the Bear Sighting brochure to learn what you should do if you encounter a bear. Last reported bear sighting was 9/28/14 (between the North Trailhead and Bryant). This should not stop you, but should be taken seriously.

Additional Trail Information

Photo Search

Google – Centennial Trail Snohomish County Photos

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  1. Beautiful trail! 10-foot wide and 31.5 mile long, impressive.

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