Explore Gorge - 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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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.

Busy on the wrong day, dead on the right.

hiking
9 days ago

Don’t be fooled by the name. I did not see one dog on Dog Mountain. It is dog friendly though, so I assume it’s a BYO situation.

The assent is hard. With a very steep incline. When the path forks go to the right of you want to really feel the burn. Better views on the left fork, but you can loop back in the opposite direction on the way down.

The peak is confused. We did go off the AT main trail to find a higher point. Views of the Gorge are pretty good. Hard trek. Recommend swimming down at Little White Salmon to freshen up on a hot day.

Tough hike with absolutely beautiful views!

Note: The Discover Pass does not work as I found out with my $5 ticket. It is $5/day or an interagency pass will work.

Nice cool shaded hike below until you start the face where you are exposed. The first mile is the toughest as far as elevation gain which doesn’t seem like it should be but it is - get past that and you will be alright :) Foliage up top was all brown and dried up so I’d recommend going earlier in the summer.

Got there around 6 am and was the only person in the lot so I did get to enjoy the hike without seeing anyone else which was cool. However! This hike is pretty intense but for what feels like no payoff. For almost all of the hike you’re in a basic forest setting and that’s all you see. You’re teased with one view of the gorge before you head back into the forest and do about 1.5 more miles before the view opens up again. In my opinion there are hikes very close to here with MUCH better views that are less crowded, still a workout, and more rewarding.

hiking
20 days ago

We hiked Dog mountain last week while vacationing in Stevenson, WA. This hike is not for the faint of heart. It’s a heart pounding climb from the first step onto the trail. You need to be in good physical shape for this hike. There is ALOT of exposure near the top so if you have a fear of heights this one might not be for you. This hike was AMAZING! It is worth every bit of hard work getting to the top....the views will leave you speechless. We were there on a Friday and there were maybe a dozen people we saw along the trail. We will definitely do this hike again.

Chose the “more difficult” route, aka the long loop. This route had almost zero switchbacks and was a constant steep incline in a beautiful wooded area. Definitely a quad burner. It was 95 degrees today, so the tree coverage was greatly appreciated. I’d love to see this hike in spring, when the wildflowers are freshly bloomed.

In the heat of the summer, this trail is worth hiking if you are simply looking for a leg and cardio workout. It is popular with trail runners and folks training for races because of the steady elevation gain. However, in the spring when the flowers are blooming, it's incredibly beautiful and really worth the effort. In May there are Balsamroots galore, Indian Paintbrush, Lupines, and more (plus tons of other people). My favorite time to go is late afternoon to avoid the crowds and watch the sunset. (Bring a headlamp for the end of the trail.) This trail isn't overly difficult for avid hikers, but would be really challenging if you aren't used to long uphills. Note: you don't have to pay the $5 parking fee if you have a Discover Pass.

hiking
23 days ago

Definitely a leg burner up and down. Amazing views at the top.

Loved this trail. The first half mile or so is steep switchbacks until you get to where the trail splits for difficulty to more difficulty. The. After that it is moderate with the exception of some steep switchbacks. The view up is amazing and so is the end. It’s windy up on top so bring a light jacket. We woke up at 4 am and got to the trailhead at 5. There was only one car in the parking lot. And we only got passed once by a couple. On the way down we could hear tree branches breaking so that was a little scary especially since no one else was on the trail. Once we got back down to where the trail splits we saw a couple heading up and then another couple going up as well. It’s not very busy during the early morning

Hiked in 2016 before the fires. My favorite hike to date. Memories I'll cherish for a lifetime.

Hike to Tunnel Falls with my boyfriend in 2015 will always be a special memory to me. Beautiful hike.

hiking
26 days ago

Totally worth the trip

My friends and I did this hike on 7/16 (via dog mountain) and honestly there are some things worth mentioning/knowing before you head up this trail.

1) this is definitely a harder hike. I think it was listed as a Hard hike under a different title and I'd say this is an accurate read of the hike.
2) when people say overgrowth, they mean WAY OVERGROWN. This trail, while well marked, is immensely overgrown in spots. At several spots (all past the turn off from dog mountain) you are completely unable to see your feet and only manage to get short glimses of trail a foot ahead in between trying to fight off trees and bushes to clear your path. this would make unexperienced hikers very uneasy as you often have to trust you're going the right way and follow your gut until you find the next clearing with a tree marker.
3) you really want to be wearing protective gear (i.e. pants and maybe a long sleeve). we packed light because it was mid 90s the day we went but we paid the price. All of our legs looked like a small animal attacked every inch of exposed skin. These scratches were painful and made us question whether or not the hike was really worth the battle.
4) having said all of that. this is a really beautiful hike. you get a great view of mt. hood about half way up and we followed the advice to go down a small north side trail off the summit to find stunning views of the gorge, Mt. St. Helen and Mt. Rainer. On a clear day, this view is magnificent and definitely worth the sweat..... worth the thorn bush scars... that might be another story...

Hiked this trail July 14th. Great climb, definitely some work but well maintained trailed, wildflowers at top and great amount of shade. Self registration / pay box at parking - $5 per car. Awesome views of the Gorge and both Mt. Hood and Mt. St. Helens from the top of Dog Mountain.

hiking
1 month ago

Pretty tough trail but definitely worth the hike! Lots of stuff to see, unless it gets cloudy… but the sooner you get there, the less people you come across up on top. My girlfriend and me and 2 dogs have hiked this trail 5 times now and it’s normally super windy and rainy up top. There was a heavy downpour and crazy winds last time we got there and when we were approaching summit (there is this 3-way intersection) there was a group of about 8 stupid people blocking the trails on all 3 directions!!!!! And I told them repeatedly ‘excuse us, we’re coming through’ about 4 times and they ignored us… so we just zig-zagged our way through and I slipped and I hit my knee really hard on a rock AND almost rolled down the top of the mountain because I was trying to avoid stepping on someone’s backpack and these f*cking idiots didn’t even say sorry or anything, so I was furious but I stayed quiet… BUT if it had been my girlfriend that slipped and hurt herself instead of me I would have done something stupid, I’m sure! However, this older hiking couple (who were also waiting for these idiots to get out the way) saw everything and they went off on these idiots blocking the trail and told them to either move their stuff or don’t hike this sort of trails again bc they’re being incosiderate of other hikers. But anyway, I wouldn’t let this deter me from hiking Dog Mountain again it is a beautiful place. Also, on our last hike, I saw more litter than all the other times we’ve done this trail — we tried picking up as much as we could on our way down… PLEASE CLEAN UP AFTER YOURSELVES AND YOUR DOGS AND TAKE THEIR SH*T BAGS DOWN WITH YOU DON’T JUST TOSS THEM ON THE SIDE OF THE TRAIL!!! If you bring something up the trail, bring it back down with you please!!!!!!

Also, make sure you bring tick repellents during spring/summer/autumn months! make sure your dogs have some sort of protection from ticks!!!!!

Kicked my backside but it was worth it. Steep incline nearly the entire way to the top, but man, that view. Clouds hanging over some of the mountains robbed us of the full view but we'll be back to try again.

hiking
1 month ago

I was happy to finally to made this hike happen on the 4th of July before work. This hike was absolutely one of my favorites in the gorge and recommend anyone to try it!

We got there early in the morning and there was hardly anyone there; which I hear is very rare to not come across a packed parking lot or have to get a permit to hike the trail. We brought a lunch, a jacket just in case, and made it up there in 3 hours or less.

Beautiful views along the way and the last mile can be a little steep, so get ready for a workout at that point. It was a little windy out there when we went, so I also recommend a jacket or something warm. The hike down is super easy and there are two ways to choose going up or down the path.

Hard!! need good shoe

hiking
1 month ago

Great trail. The wild flowers are a wonderful reward for all the hard work to get to the top of the mountain. Amazing views.

A great hike but not for the occasional hiker. You'll be gaining almost 1,000 ft per mile. After the first 0.6th of a mile the trail divides and you're given two choices: "difficult" to the right and "more difficult" to the left. Chose wisely.

hiking
1 month ago

Great hike. Took my amazing 9 yo with and he killed. Not a single complaint. The top is windy but there are trees if you want to hide from the elements, it just hides the views at the same time. I can't imagine how it would look during peak wildflower season. The views were incredible!

hiking
1 month ago

Awesome hike. Started around 7:45am. Was probably about the 8th person in the Lot. Make sure you pay for parking - $5.

Steep incline to start , remained consistent. Poked out to a gorgeous vista but wasn’t even half way there. Hard hike is true to be sure.

Eventually came out of woods to open views as you get closer. More gorgeous. Flowers past season.
Took the difficult route vs. more difficult. Was good idea as it was indeed difficult!

Started in a tee and at the top was in full blown jacket - was chilly as it was super super windy! Ate a bit behind some trees protected from wind.

Loads of spots to take in the gorge . You are at a high point on this hike. Make sure you look up and take it all in.

Will return earlier in the spring .

Went into Carson to the backwoods brew pub afterwards - awesome . Order a pizza . Over the top.

hiking
1 month ago

Went the more difficult way. My body hurt like hell when I was finally done with the whole hike but SO worth the views.

hiking
1 month ago

Very strenuous but worth it! Amazing views. The “more difficult” route is very steep pretty much the entire way so bring lots of water. Not for beginners or the faint of heart! Overall a beautiful and challenging hike.

Seriously hard as hell. Haha so beautiful though, amazing views. I would recommend doing the difficult way rather than more difficult. Were not the fastest hikers so it took me and my friends about 4 hours total going the more difficult route up and the difficult route down. Bring ibuprofen because your knees will be sore! Overall super fun and a great challenge.

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