ROUND TRIP: 3.0 miles
ELEVATION GAIN: 1,400 feet
SEASON: July - October
START: Forest Road 6554
PARKING: Northwest Forest Pass
Starting at a high elevation and beginning in an old burn surrounded by old cuts, the way steeply climbs. Between switchbacks, take in sweeping views south of the broad U-shaped Beckler River Valley. At .6 mile enter = Trailhead FR 6554 Fire Lookout Wild Sky Wilderness the Wild Sky Wilderness leaving young regenerating forest for groves of old-growth mountain hemlock. Now on a gentler grade, traverse ridge reaching a small gap. Then continue along ridge crest leaving forest for meadows that burst with wildflowers. Swing around the north side of the mountain and after one final push reach the 5,587- foot summit with its restored fire lookout.
Look south to Mounts Stuart and Daniel, the Snoqualmie Pass peaks, and big, beautiful Mount Rainier hovering above them all. Look north to the Monte Cristo Peaks and east to the high alpine meadow country of the Henry M. Jackson Wilderness. Of course take time to appreciate the 1935 lookout, too. It can be rented out for overnight stays (reservations are required: reserveamerica.com). Restored by the Everett Mountaineers and the Seattle Explorer Search and Rescue in the 1990s, it stands now as a sentinel in Washington’s newest wilderness area, the Wild Sky.
Header image courtesy of Dave Fish.