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Left parking lot about 0830, got to mason lake about 10. Put on micro spikes somewhere near the lake and kept them on the rest of the hike until returning back down to that spot. Walked on rocks to cross stream and continue to the peak. I didn’t use poles but they seemed to help many people with the semi-rock scramble near the top. Had lunch at the peak and put on a bunch of layers. Got back to parking lot about 4pm. Remember sunset is 4:30pm now!! It was beautiful when I hiked but I’m sure there is more snow to come.

A 360 view at the top! First hour is tiring then it actually gets more gradual as you get closer. Today, in November, it had snow about half way up or the last third. it's all packed down though. you don't need spikes but polls are helpful.

trail running
13 days ago

Good technical trail for running. A lot of gain on the way to the top. Will have to come back when its sunny and clear, nothing but most, rain and the occasional frozen rain waves. There are places snow is either on or next to the trail.

Great trail! Very rainy and foggy, but still amazing views and flora. It is longer than the beta shows. I got kind of confused between the water washes and the trail near the top and my phones GPS was not reading correctly.

Very windy at the top but well worth the hike to the top , wish it was much clearer. Started at 7 am and was done by 11 pm .

This is always my go to trail to just get away from people. You'll maybe see 6 or so people the entire trip. Lots of places to camp and plenty is space between camp sites giving you the solitude you want!

hiking
24 days ago

Great trail, intense on the lower body. The initial part is through the woods, and then opens up with spectacular views of Mt. Rainier. You can see and hear vehicles from I-90 for most of the way. There are lots of blueberries on the way in the latter part. The trail has a lot of rocks which can get annoying while coming down. The views on top are fantastic with Mt Rainier towering about the other mountains. The fire/lookout tower on the top is closed.

Elevation gain on the trail is about 3,800 feet and can be quite intense. Wouldn’t recommended this trek for beginners. Make sure you carry enough water since the trail is long and it can be quite exhausting on a sunny day.

hiking
25 days ago

We started at 6:15 and reached the top in 2.5 hours. The first 2 miles are through the woods and later the trail opened up with awesome fall colors all around and my rainier starting to show towards the south.
The second half of the hike up is truly picturesque. There were just 2 other folks when we reached the lookout. The best view to grab your breakfast bites.
We ran into quite a lot of people on the way down though. And by the time we were back around 12(we stopped in places for photos) the parking lot was full with around 30 other cars parked outside on the road. Getting in early was a good idea.
My tracker clocked 11.5 miles and an elevation gain of 4070ft. Completely snow free today.

hiking
30 days ago

This trail is definitely a workout, but on Sunday, 10/14/18, we had the most beautiful, clear day with bright fall colors that made it work the work! Snow-capped Mt Rainier with a foreground of red, yellow and orange leaves on the ridge was breathtaking. Layer up, but we ended up taking off most of what we wore because the weather was so beautiful.. It's a lower body burner for sure, but definitely doable for anyone in good shape. You never lose the trail or have you make your own path or anything like that... just a lot of elevation gain in a short time. Lots of sweat!

What a great hike! Has a bit of that “alpine lakes” feel near the top- not bad for being west of the pass. However, not sure where the measurement for the hike begins, but we logged 9.9 miles from the trailhead, leading us to think that AllTrails measures from the cut off to granite mountain about a mile up the trailhead. That, and the fact that we logged over 4100 ft. elevation gain instead of the 3700 ft. or so they list . So be forewarned if time is an issue- it’s a bit longer hike than you may expect. But good!

Very beautiful hike!

Beautiful fall hike in the woods..trail is in
amazing shape..be sure friends are not afraid to cross bridges..the first bridge is very slanted but secure..icy in the AM. But so worth it all .Great Hike!

So beautiful! It’s a tough hike with all the switchbacks, but well worth it on a clear day. I highly recommend this one.

Most beautiful ever ever! Colors are everywhere! One of my best fall hikes!

Went up on a beautiful fall day and it was a nice hike. The way up is nice and we went off trail up boulders before the peak which added a nice effort. Great view up top but would imagine it’s crowded during the weekend.

Started the hike on oct 1,, at around 7:30am, took about 3.5 hours out and back. The fall colors were amazing in this little valley before the final push to the summit and the top was covered in clouds which looked surreal. It was a bit challenging, my legs were pretty tired from the few hikes we did the day before so it felt like the switchbacks went on forever. there weren't very many people on this trail, we did see someone with a dog so dogs can definitely do this hike. There were blueberries that lined the trail which made for a great snack on the way up.

Great trail!!

Awesome - longer than stated here. We tracked 11 miles from trailhead to tower round trip. There’s approximately 6inches of snow once you start curving in from the ridge and it’s pretty slipper in some areas with all the slush. Looks like a winter wonderland though. Couldn’t see anything because of cloud coverage from the tower (it was closed so sat below it) but the views from the ridge were incredible with bright fall foliage. We plan to visit again in the summer.

Awesome trail with beautiful scenery and changing landscapes. We went thinking we'd see the Fall colors, but we're a day too late! Still some reds and yellows poking out, and plenty at the middle elevations. Socked in at the top, but still worth the climb and snow-free rocks to eat lunch on. Go early before the snow melts to slush! Was muddy on the way down. Parking lot fills up by 9 and clears out around noon. Don't forget your Northwest Forest Pass and warm layers! Happy trails. (Hiked 10/6/18)

From Hwy 123.

Hike downhill for less than half a mile passing decent little waterfall. Then straight up hill to the lakes. Ended up doing between 10.5 and 11 miles round trip with a 2400 foot elevation gain. Well maintained trail.

This hike is amazing. Not a lot of people head this way, they usually stop at mason lake or Bandera. The incline beginning from Mason Lake is pretty tough, I think equal to climbing Bandera. But all alone I was at the top! On the way down I saw nobody headed to the top.

This hike was beautiful and the fall colors today (sept 29th) were incredible! Took me 4 hours total to get up and back down not really taking any breaks or pics (not including the 20 mins I spent at the top). Pretty tough but I would rate it more as moderate than hard if you are in decent shape. Parking lot was full by 8am and definitely saw more people coming down later so I recommend starting before 8 if you can. Pretty windy and chilly at the top so definitely bring a jacket! Nice views of mount rainier too! No bugs at all. Highly recommend!

Beautiful trail. Paved road all the way and large parking area. Vine maples are changing color... lots of variety on this hike. A very enjoyable outing!

This is one of my favorite waterfalls with absolutely stunning wildflowers and a great view of the mountain.

hiking today and I had a great time perfect weather had to know before the session closed

First off, the bear is still there, located in the area where the berries are most abundant, about 1 Mile from the top. He was so busy eating he wasn’t bothered by us at all, we saw him about 25’ off the trail, and one hiker was within 10’ of the bear because he wasn’t able to deter the bear so he went around it, he said the bear was more interested in eating berries and wasn’t at all aggressive and kept eating.

I gave it 4 stars because switchbacks suck, otherwise it made a great Fall hike once you got out from under the canopy of the trees, and away from those switchbacks. At the top it was socked in with clouds, it was windy and absolutely bone chilling. As we were headed back down it cleared up and the sun came out.

We were here on 09/13 which was a overcast day. I felt like this hike took a lot of work and time up for very little payoff. To start the road was under construction so within the first few miles we were stopped at a sign saying road closed for an hour. Talked to some previously waiting cars and sounded like awhile had already elapsed. Waited maybe 20 min to continue. Then you have this unpaved road that is just so rough the whole way and has a speed limit of 25 mph. Takes about 40 minutes with lots and lots of moments you swear you will have a flat tire. The hike itself was not overly strenuous or technical but is definitely a workout at times. We only went to the falls and turned around since we knew we weren’t going to get any Mountain View’s with the weather so in total was a 4 mile trip. Then back down the rough road to wait another 30 minutes at the construction zone to leave. I think if it had been a clearer visibility day so that the hike itself had more visual payoff I wouldn’t have cared so much about the time and the travel etc but for us it was just a pretty standard forest hike with a lot of obstacles.

On a clear day this is an amazing hike. We were lucky enough to have great weather and the views of mount rainier were spectacular! It definitely has some elevation so be prepared! We got there @ 9am on a weekday and only saw a few ppl on the trail .

We hiked this for the first time a few weeks ago and it was BEAUTIFUL. I mean breathtaking. Not a tough hike and any spots that were a little tough were made worth it by the views. Watch out for the wasps nest at the beginning of the hike though, I got stung. Not fun. Trail is well kept up. Not a ton of bugs. A little chilly if it’s not sunny.

This is a challenging but wonderful hike. Our GPS Garmin watch listed it as about 10 mi round trip, so be prepared for more than 8.3 miles. There were tons of wild blueberries all along the top portion.

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