Explore 11,28 - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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Madeline Meredith reviewed Elk Mountain Loop Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 4, 2021
HikingGreat!Snow

One of my favorite hikes! Amazing and challenging. There are warning signs before the trail... if you’re not an expert hiker please don’t do this trail without understanding what you’re getting into with the current snow conditions and please don’t get on here and rate such a beautiful challenging hike low for your mistake. If you’re up for a steep challenging climb with incredible views the whole way and some fun snow this hike is perfect!

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 4, 2021

3/3 Would not recommend full loop until snow is gone, depending on your comfort level with steep snow and traversing it made for a pretty fun day, finished loop in 5 hour's but with some slow moving on the backside. Would like to thank whoever laid the boot pack. I didn't have spikes but could have been nice in some spots. Definitely recommend poles.

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 1, 2021
BackpackingIcyOff trailScrambleSnow

Did this hike on 2/28, quite steep with snow starting about a mile from elk creek trailhead turning into 2-3 feet deep between elk mountain and kings mountain. Trail finding was pretty challenging as there were no tracks to guide me and I was forced to slowly sidehill my way along the ridgeline on sketchy, steep terrain the rest of the way to kings while postholing the entire time sometimes to my waist. Definitely a fun trail if you're looking for a challenge but probably a good idea to wait until the snow melts out before attempting the loop unless you're crazy enough like I was.

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Heather Caples reviewed Elk Mountain Loop Trail
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Hiking

Learn from my mistakes. Do not do this loop until after the snow melts. Even with spikes it was awful. The very steep sections are insanely sketchy in the snow. A lot of snow up at the higher parts of the trail. A lot of animal tracks. Don’t try the loop until after the snow melts unless you are a VERY experienced hiker. Was beautiful, but not worth it at alllllll with current conditions.

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 8, 2021
HikingMuddy

you know how in this app a moderate trail is sometimes pretty easy so you're not sure if you can rely on the rating? Not this time! This is a very demanding difficult trail that will test your endurance, balance, and take what's left of your knee cartilage. I started at King Mountain trailhead and headed counterclockwise toward Elk campground. At 3.6 miles took a hard left and started up Elk. Very steep, lots of scrambles, many places where the trail is a rock face with hand and footholds. Even on this misty day I was rewarded with gorgeous views. after the peak I intended to take the loop around to King and back to my start, but there was A LOT OF SNOW, making it very difficult to follow the already sketchy trail. So I just didn't. I turned back and made it an out and back 10.2 miles. Felt the burn. Be careful out there and listen to that little voice that tells you it is time to turn back.

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJanuary 30, 2021
Hiking

1/30/21. Not sure how this route is 9.5 miles. From Sahalie Falls to Blue Pool, following this route, I clocked 6 miles. Since it was already 4PM and I didn’t feel like hiking 6 miles back (I’d planned on a 9.5 mi hike, not a 12 mi hike), I hiked out to the Blue Pool trailhead and bummed a ride back to Sahalie. Other than the mileage discrepancy, it was a great hike. Microspikes recommend for the slick soft snow from Sahalie to Blue Pool. From Blue Pool to its trailhead, trail is mostly snow-free but VERY muddy. Falls are gushing this time of year. And the ice blue water is beautiful.

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJanuary 29, 2021
HikingClosedSnow

Trailhead is inaccessible (via car) due to landslides. The stretch from Angel's Rest to Devil's Rest is pretty well snow covered but hikeable.

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Lillie Hamel reviewed Elk Mountain Loop Trail
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Hiking

The trail was honestly harder than expected. We did the steep part first, which I’m glad we did. Definitely bring water and snacks. The trail was well maintained though and easy to follow

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 24, 2021
Hiking

Excellent

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Kendall O’Leary reviewed Elk Mountain Loop Trail
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HikingGreat!RockyScramble

This is one of my favorite trails in the world. It’s one where you’re definitely aware of your butt getting kicked the ENTIRE time, but the views when you get to the top are undeniable. Always takes my breath away - literally and figuratively.

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJanuary 23, 2021
HikingIcyMuddy

I love the Gorge, as does everyone else in town. The trail was packed today and there were a shocking amount of people not wearing masks! Once you got past Angel's Rest and all the kids taking selfies, the trail was much more enjoyable!

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 23, 2021
Hiking

Great loop. Amazing views. Met a lot if cool people on the way, gave them high fives. Bring lots of food and snacks. This is a calorie burn.

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Chris Fitzsimmons reviewed Elk Mountain Loop Trail
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Hiking

Amazing views on the way to the summit. Trail is in great condition.

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Hiking
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Rock climbing

sunny skies with no wind. this hike exceeded expectations! i had summited kings 31 times before this and elk also several times but i had never done this traverse between the two and it was spectacular! i thought it would be a gentle ridge, which it was for some time but the sections close to the two peaks were quite steep. the trail after kings was one of the steepest i’ve ever been on with short steep up and downs. the last sharp pitch uphill even had a rope to pull yourself up! it was insane. at the top there was a spectacular saddle in between two dramatic crags, with incredible views off both sides. the rest of the traverse was nice, there were cliffs as well as meadows with remnants of abundant spring wildflowers. the scramble up to elk was tricky but fun. the wilson river trail at the end was delightful and more diverse than i expected with many cute streams and meadows along with the forest. will definitely come back in spring to do this one and see wildflowers on the high traverse. WARNING: starting on 1/24 the weather will shift to a colder pattern and over a foot of snow will fall on the higher elevations of this loop by the end of the week. do this tomorrow or wait for spring if you want this to be snow-free.

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJanuary 20, 2021
Hiking

Went CCW like the trail is recorded. Sunny in the morning and partly cloudy in the evening. Awesome late January day. Not very busy at all. Didn’t see anyone until I was coming down Kings mtn. Trail way try and well managed. If you like being under trees, and don’t mind lots of ascending and descending, and are looking for a workout, good hike for you.

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 16, 2021
Hiking

We went mid-Summer started around 7am it was a great trail so quite hardly saw other people along our way. Good amount of shade considering it was very warm that day. Reaching blue pool was very magical!

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Sarthak Sahu reviewed Elk Mountain Loop Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 15, 2021
HikingGreat!

DO IT CLOCKWISE. Trust me I was scared too of ascending the intense Elk mountain face but you do NOT want to go down a 1350 fpm rocky face after a whole hike. Tough one, steep narrow rocky and sheer. Views ok, not spectacular. really more of a conditioning hike for those looking to try helens/sisters/etc . trail in overall great condition, easy to nav but download a map for safety. would definitely try the nasty ridgeline to kings summit next time, need more hours of sunlight I feel. This one took me 4 and 45 mins breaks. clocked 8.5/2950

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shaun scott reviewed Elk Mountain Loop Trail
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Hiking
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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 10, 2021
Hiking

My first time up to Devil’s Rest, hardly saw anyone, trail narrowed down pretty hard with a bit of brush to walk through, mud here and there, but overall a beautiful hike in the clouds.

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 10, 2021
HikingGreat!RockyScramble

Glorious! it's a great adventure trail. saw some others doing the loop in the opposite direction and it was great to see them passing by on final stretch. Did it ccw. Great views. Watch out for ROUS's.

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