The stunning emerald green waters of the lakes in the North Cascades are one destination worth the drive. One great driving loop takes you east of Seattle on Hwy 2 towards Leavenworth with its beautiful alpine village feel, then north towards Lake Chelan and its many wineries, then north towards Winthrop for the old-west town ambience. Keep going northwest towards Mt. Baker national forest for the many beautiful vistas like this you will see, then back west towards I-5 arriving in Mt. Vernon. The loop is not a day trip – you will want to schedule at least 2-3 days with stops in one or two of the towns along the way. There is so much natural beauty to be seen, you won’t want to go speeding by. This driving loop is easiest in the summer season about May-September if you aren’t looking to drive in the snow.
Washington is named the Evergeen state, and you can surely see why. The North Cascades are a verdant wonderland, and the waters shine like emeralds.