West Cady Ridge Trail to Bench Mark Mountain is a 12.6 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Index, WA that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible from March until November.
Directions from Gold Bar: Drive east on U.S. Hwy. 2 and then turn north at the Index turnoff onto the North Fork Skykomish River Road #63. Drive 22 miles to the trailhead on the right.
Beautiful views at the top, well worth it
This would be great if we actually found the trail at the location listed here. We tried both directions of trail shown on ALL TRAILS app. To the left of the way point, we ended up in thick brush on an old forest road about 2 miles in. We went back to the car and decided we would take the trail that was going to a lake. Unfortunately, we ran into things that left us spooked as if we may had stumbled upon a grow farm. A large, bunkered down, camouflage tarp was set up covering 75% of the trail. We tried to pass within the 25% of the trail that was open and a bear bell was there obviously to alert someone of any visitors. I then noticed another 1 man camouflage tent in same pattern about 100 yards from the large one we first ran into. We were probably 2 miles down the trail when we saw this. We decided to leave at this point. There was a really cool creek/river spot where the index-galena road had washed out. This was worth it. Overall, this experience was 5 stars! Just wish we found the actual trail or it wasn't taken over by trolls.
Takes a bit of drive time to get to this trial but worth it. The trail starts off at a pretty easy climb and crosses, in my opinion, one of the most beautiful rivers I've ever seen. Only made it up about a half a mile as we were replacing a puchin with a new couvert and stringers to open the trail for horses and hikers.