Explore The 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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Take a capable vehicle to this trailhead. I repeat; take a capable vehicle to this trailhead.
I took a Prius. I thought for sure I was going to wreck my Prius getting there. The road is so bad in places that it looks like a motocross track.
Expect 10ish miles of uneven, overgrown, single lane, gravel roads-- with countless supersize potholes.
By the time I made it to the TH, I noticed a storm rolling in so I got back in my car and left. I didn't even get to do the hike. There was no way I wanted to try driving that road when it's wet and muddy.
The hike seemed lovely. Maybe I'll be back one day when I buy a different car.

Love the view on this one.

Busy on the wrong day, dead on the right.

Aside from the first mile, I wouldn’t vouch for this hike as being hard. I’d classify this moderate. Despite some overgrown spots on the trail, it’s a nice blend between mostly shady and a few wide open (dry) areas with nice views of Mt. Adams and Mt. Hood. You can spot the backside of Dog Mountain, too.

We only ran into six people in our in-n-out on a Saturday morning/early afternoon in early August. Good for some quiet time in what seems like a crowded time for hiking.

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.

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.

hiking
23 days ago

It was an INTENSE!! hike at 6:20am to 5:30pm. It was AMAZINGLY!! beautiful feeling when u get to the top

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

hiking
25 days ago

Piles of charred wood. Very sad.

Steep in some sections that gave a nice challenge. Beautiful along the way.

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

A tough climb but worth it! An excellent challenge for body, mind, and spirit. I suggest taking as many breaks as you feel you need; your legs will thank you on the descent. Bring plenty of water, and more than you think you'll need on hot days. It took me about 4 hours to reach the summit, and 3.5 hours to hike back down. I did soak in the views of the gorge and mountains in Washington along the way, and spent about an hour on the summit gazing at Mt. Hood.

Herman Creek trail is indeed open. Hike it as an out and back only at this time. Do not attempt to make a loop of it using Casey Creek, Nick Eaton or Gorton Creek trails to complete the loop. Those 3 trails are heavily fire damaged at the top in the Green Point Ridge area. Trails are impossible to follow without GPS if at all. You can get up to Green Point Mtn. via Herman Creek and Herman Creek Cutoff trails, but I'm warning you, turn around after the splendid view at the Green Point Mtn. summit and come back the way you came in. Speaking from distressing personal experience.

hiking
1 month ago

Not sure why this trail is called Indians point loop. Trailhead is at Herman Creek campground. Follow herman creek trail 406. When you come to the loop, id suggest veering left onto the gorton creek trail #408. Even though it is the longer part of the loop, its is better shaded and not as steep as the Nick Eaton Trail #447, which you would take on the way down. I took the Nick Eaton trail on the way up and it was not as well covered and more steep. If you decided to take the Nick Eaton trail first, the fist three miles are pretty much inclined switch backs with little tree coverage from the fire :(. Once you get to three miles, the hike becomes much easier. Definitely suggest bringing hiking poles with you

hiking
1 month ago

Hiked July 11. Well marked trail (except near the rock falls) with 2 waterfalls, a lake and views all along the trail. Went up Defiance, down Starvation. Because of the closed Wash out trail at the end we had to take on another steep ridge and cross over a log on the creek- added about 2-3 miles onto the hike. Total hike time was 9 hours and 20 minutes with 2 hours of stopping time for pics and lunch. The summit is a huge ugly power station but u can sit on the rocks that has a view of Mt Hood (too cloudy for us to see it) with the power Station at your back.

Steep first mile into a nice rolling hike. Great views of Hood and Adams. Plenty of sun to shade. Parts of the trail are overgrown for 40-50M at a time. Road is in good shape. Having a ground clearance is crucial. Lots of flowers.

hiking
1 month ago

Previous reviewer got confused. The Starvation ridge trail #414 is very much open, it's the short Starvation ridge cut-off trail that is closed. Starvation ridge trail #414 can be taken from the Mount Defiance trail #413 instead of from the cut-off trail until it reopens. Hope this helps.

Consider yourself a champion after completing this hike! I've seen several folks say they used the Starvation Ridge Trail to either ascend or descend, but that trail is still closed, clearly marked as such. You need to do the full hike on the Mt. Defiance Trail, only. Excellent views of Mt. Adams, Hood & St. Helens. Bring lots of water, as portions are exposed in the burn area.

1 month ago

Brutal hike! I did to the top 12miles back and out w 5k elevation gain

Went early on Friday July 6th, only one other car at TH. Challenging hike to Dog Mtn, wildflowers drying out but views gorgeous. My intention was to cross over to Augspurger. Dropped down into valley trail, very cool and well maintained. Took Dog / Augspurger trail split and had to turn back after about 1/4 mi. Trail to Augspurger extremely overgrown right now...lost the trail completely. Hike down Augspurger side of trail back to parking lot was easy, several people hiking up this route. Lot was almost full at this time. Definitely good idea to get there early

hiking
1 month ago

Completed on July 4th. We accessed Elk Cove from the Vista Ridge TH to avoid the possible construction issue at original trailhead. It's approx 8.8 miles going this route-> http://www.oregonhikers.org/field_guide/Elk_Cove_from_Vista_Ridge_Hike
Snow on the trail in spots on the upper vista ridge section through to nearing Dollar Lake & Elk Cove, but was not an issue, easy to walk on.
Very up close views of Mt Hood & various flowers throughout.

hiking
1 month ago

The trail is open with lots of burned trees. Sad to see. There are also some nice green areas and a beautiful waterfall. Nice to see the forest understory coming back after the fire.

hiking
1 month ago

I’m pretty convinced this is closer to 14 miles, and absolutely convinced I don’t want to do it again. The route down was really tricky, and the total trip took me 10 hours with a stop for lunch. 3L of water, snacks, and a sandwich was plenty of fuel, but I wouldn’t have necessarily wanted to take less than that.

It’s a good training hike— really steep coming up (I came up Starvation), and glacially slow picking your way down the same grade (I came down Defiance, which was more poorly maintained, washed out in a few places, and offered a good look at recovering, post-burn forest). The views are best on Starvation, where you can see an osprey nest, pass Lake Warren, and get a really beautiful volcano view. The summit boasts a clear shot of Mt. Hood, and a good look at the hills beyond, but the experience is partially marred by the massive radio tower up there.

All in all: this is a hike for the journey, not the destination— and the journey is really physically demanding, particularly post-summit.

Amazing hike and view at the end of it all, very worth the effort! First time really ever hiking seriously but was able to complete the whole trip in 5 hours with another friend. Both relatively fit, so definitely recommend if one is not very active to start a bit easier.

hiking
1 month ago

Definitely a really hard hike for beginners! Took me 9 hours to do the whole trail but that includes 40 minutes of rest and another 40 minutes because I went on a wrong trail in the beginning.

I took Mount Defiance going up and Starvation coming down. There’s a nice lake there too, perfect for camping and staying the night.

Great hike, very beautiful but kicked my ass. Bring lots of food and water. Maybe one half a mile of flat stretch. The rest is either very steep up hill or down.

hiking
1 month ago

This trail was great. There were tons of great views. The road to the trail head was a bit sketch but my 96 honda accord with barely legal bald tires did fine. Not a lot of foot traffic on the trail which was fantastic. The difficulty did not seem to be as hard as advertised.

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