Explore Gifford - 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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Fun hike on Saturday. We parked in the first parking lots, although the road leading to the closer parking lot has been repaired since last time I was there, and I would drive it if I went back. Not too muddy. For four quick hikers and a dog, it took us 3 hours and we clocked almost 8 miles (we walked the gravel road to the trailhead, adding about 3 miles)

backpacking
1 day ago

Great hike! Awesome payoff! Went in using the actual hiking trail, easy and clear except for a few horse pies!

My favorite hike on the Columbia Gorge. Definitely a workout but the view is totally worth it!!!

hiking
1 day ago

tough hike up and down. beautiful views

Summited August 18th with my mom for her 50th birthday and four of my aunties! Fantastic hike, it was my second time summitting. Views were incredible both on the ascent and at the top. Bring at least 4 liters of water and research what to pack!

Easy trail/road that connects with alot of other trails on the mountain. it is a gradual up hill. I would call this more easy than moderate. Beautiful views of the mountain.

hiking
1 day ago

The trail is in good shape. Starting off from the parking area you have beautiful views of Mt. St. Helens for a short stretch, then you’re in the trees for a good three and a half miles before it opens up near the timberline. The last mile to the Loo Wit Trail is much more of an incline than the first three miles, so be prepared for a more strenuous finish. About a quarter mile from the intersection with Loo Wit the trail hooks sharply to the right, but if you’re not paying attention you can easily continue up a dry creek bed and lose the trail. If you’re ever hiking in the creek bed, you’re off trail. Other than that, the views on top are spectacular, even with all the smoke still in the air. Have fun!

Hard, but worth it in the end!

Very hard hike but so worth it! Boulder section was THE most challenging for me. Never ending. The climb to the top was hard but since I knew I was right there it was ok. Beautiful day!!!

hiking
3 days ago

Life goal check! My first real hike in 2 years so it was a challenge. I went all the up to the end of the trail. Views are spectacular!

Almost didn’t do this trail but so happy I did. You think you’re getting the best view about a mile from the top but I promise the last push is worth it. From the summit, you have a great view of Helens, Hood, and Adams. Pretty exposed trail but the views are worth it.

great hike. Wife is a beginner but had great time. Lush wood made for cool hiking

This hike is certainly not an easy one but boy it’s worth the grind.
The boulders do go on forever and right when you can see the summit and feel as if it’s within reach, then comes the ash scree! The last 200-300ft are the hardest in my mind.
But once you reach the summit, the pain will be worth it. Along the trail up, there are gorgeous views of Mt Adams and Mt Hood too. Will do it again!

it was hard but definitely worth the view.

hiking
4 days ago

Well marked trail and a change up from the normal adventures around Mount St Helens

This hike really impressed us. We were looking for something a little bit different than the usual mountain hikes were used to, so we decided to give this trail a try. We really enjoyed that the trail was unique, in that you’re quite literally traversing down a canyon adjacent to magnificent gushing water and waterfalls. We enjoyed the views most on the lower portion of the trail, and especially loved the ladders...just got a kick out of those! All in all, we loved it and would definitely do it again!

Grueling trek. Boulder fields seem to go on forever, and the final uphill over the loose ash is harsh and you'll doubt your ability to reach the top. Once you get there the views are amazing.

If you’re doing this hike in the summer (as we did), bring at least 3 liters of water- it is hot and dusty all the way to the summit. After you pass the tree line (2miles), the terrain is very rocky so bring gloves - you will spend ~ 2 miles scrambling over boulders. The last part is the hardest to go up - an incline of loose ash for about a mile. The view from the top is nice, but in the summer everything is brown and dry looking, and the sky can be hazy. Took us about 10 hours with several nature pee and snack breaks. Bring water, sunscreen, layers, gloves, boots, and poles.

There are 2 levels to this cave. The main tube (I think it's the lower cave) is really easy walk. We got bored with it and turned around. The other level ( upper cave) is pretty rough. The Rangers said that it is for more experienced cavers. People have had to be rescued due to concussions, broken bones and getting stuck. There's a wall that you have to climb over. Once you do that, there is no turning back and you have to continue onward. This was our first cave, so we didn't do that one. This is info that the Rangers shared with us. Have fun, but be careful!

hiking
5 days ago

SO MUCH FUN. I’m so used to trail hiking that this was such a fun break! We did the lower cave first, then walked up the hill and went DOWN the upper cave rather than up. The rock scrambles in the upper cave are so cool and tons of fun to climb up, but going DOWN there are a few 6-8 foot drops you have to get down that are a little complicated (I needed help down one of them because I couldn’t reach the foothold). USFS and NW Forest Passes not sold on site from what I could see, so make sure you buy ahead of time. I used a flashlight and the flashlight on my phone because I left my headlamp at home. Would definitely suggest a headlamp, possibly gloves, and hiking boots to make your life a little easier on the way. Also FOR SURE dress in layers! The caves hang out at about 45*F year round! Lots of bruises from the rocks but it was totally worth it, one of my favorite adventures I’ve done to date!

Definitely a workout on the legs and knees, but worth it. Always come prepared! It can be quite chilly and windy at the top. We took a little side trail loop on the way down - it was a nice change in scenery and much warmer.

Fantastic trail

Beautiful place

Went off hours, late afternoon on a weekday, and had the place almost to myself. Can get packed on weekends.

It was one of my favorite hikes

hiking
7 days ago

Awesome hike! We took our 5 year old and he did awesome. There were some hard parts with climbing rocks but he made it through the whole trail! I suggest flash lights, gloves for climbing the rocks and hiking boots, no flip flops.

As a follow-up to the review by PhLo S just below...my group went August 10-12. There were some flies and mosquitoes at the lower elevations, but nothing close to plague-level. As a precaution we wore long sleeve shirts and long pants, with the option to wear head nets. While hiking these precautions weren't really needed, but during rest stops the bugs can get annoying. The views at the upper elevations are amazing. This was one of the best hikes I have been on.

My first hike after being cancer free will always be in my heart.

this trail is rated as moderate but it was pretty easy. it was nice and cool. The trail was surprisingly crowded, however you weren't nipping at one another's heels. It was BEAUTIFUL! At mile 2 the waterfall was amazing. Lots of dogs. Many off leash which was fine as my dog is well behaved.

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