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This is an ok trail. Not sure why others rate it so high. It’s practically a highway because their are so many people. We went to go snowshoeing. The snow was so packed down from all the people that we just took off our snowshoes and hiked. Parking is very difficult as well because there are so many cars. Go further out from the city. It’s worth it.

awesome trail need micro spikes and poles

2 days ago

Tough hike but well worth it. Bring plenty of water.

Unreal. Easy access, fun hike. Feels like summer in mid January.

3 days ago

Awesome view. Definitely worth the steep climb and ropes to get to the top.

4 days ago

Trail is well maintained at this time. Some trees have fallen over the trail and will need to be removed, but isn’t impeding movement along the trail or hazardous. Trail is steep going up and of course, going down. Bring walking polls. Weather today was raining with evidence of snow below the tree line on the west side of the mountain face 3 miles up. Traction devices are recommended. Once you clear the tree line and cross the Talus field, you will need traction devices due to the exposure on the north face and due to the icy conditions. Expect windy and icy conditions over the next few days as the low pressure system passes through. The mailbox is full at this time. Be sure to drop something off into the mailbox prior to your departure. Sunset during month of January is around 5 pm. Be sure to plan your trip accordingly.

Its a beautiful hike, short, steep great views. Really nice at the top. My only negative is all of the off leash dogs; they aren’t cute, please leash your dog or leave them at home.

7 days ago


Enjoyed the scenery and walking in the snow. When the app says the trail has heavy traffic that’s an understatement. It was like Walmart on Black Friday with one lane in and out of the sno-park because of so many cars parked on the side of the road. People and dogs everywhere; like the house chaos of Home Alone except outside.

The snow is too compact to actually snowshoe for realz. Just did it for funz!

Always an amazing hike! Great little incline the entire way up for an awesome leg workout and super easy going back.
Gets SUPER crowded, we ALWAYS go right after sunrise to beat the crowds and when we make it back to the car the parking lot is packed around 8-9am, otherwise the trail is way too crowded and loud, along with way too many people at the vista overlook/summit. Just beat the crowds, it's so worth it!

I’ve hiked this trail several times throughout the year. The trail is in good condition and easy to follow. There are a few inches of snow at the top but it’s still safe to scramble the shoulder for the view.

Avoid the upper goat path. I is thick enough to be a hazard but to thin to work with just under 1/4”. Fall protection gear is highly recommended. For above the continuation.

Hiked January 8, 2019

11 days ago

Just wanted to correct some misconceptions: 1) Out & Back: Yes, you do have to come back down the same way unless you are OK with road walking (go down West Access to SR900 & head south), but there are loops to be done from the top, and future connections farther down. To make it a one-way, park a second car at West Access, Mountainside Drive, or Sequoia Court trailheads. 2) View area & privacy. The view area with bench (below Debbie's View) is better than D'sV and quite spectacular. Don't worry about bothering the neighbors, as all the houses (largely out of sight) were built or bought after the viewpoint was developed so they know the deal. 3) Shooting (also barking dog). This is on a privately owned ridge north of the park & doesn't occur often or for very long.

Great little hike. Easy to get to, plenty of parking and the trail is packed so it’s easy to navigate. Fresh snow fell so all the trees are coated and the lake is gorgeous. Definitely worth the drive from Tacoma.

trail running
13 days ago

Absolutely love this trail! The first mile is a bit steep, then the trail levels out a bit in mile two then has some great switchbacks in the third mile. Perfect for repeats.

Loved this hike. It tested not only my physical strength but also mental strength. beautiful views and worth the rope climb to the top!

Very steep and challenging hike. The first three quarters of the hike is a fairly steady incline and a number of switchbacks. The last quarter of the trail is incredibly steep and covered with snow and ice. Definitely make sure to bring micro spikes and poles. It’s demanding but the view at the summit is well worth the effort.

17 days ago

Came prepared for the snow, wasn't expecting all the rain. Despite only having water-resistant clothing (and being soaked-to-the-bone when done), this trail was perfect for a quick, easy, and beautiful snowshoeing fix! From the road, it was about a half mile walk to reach the pond. Quite a few people out making the trek to the pond, but had the trail around Gold Creek Pond completely to ourselves. Gorgeous views and plenty peaceful. Only issue to report has been addressed by other reviewers. There were a lot of folks with dogs out there and a lot of waste left behind scattering the trail up to the pond.

18 days ago

What a gorgeous hike. I hiked this on December 24th and you begin in a lush forest even during winter, there is a lot of green and a lot of huge trees. I didn’t encounter any snow but there was snow present on slopes further up past the trail. It definitely deserves the hard rating if hiked all the way to the top. If stopping at the first viewpoint it may be a moderate. There is a lot of elevation gain quick. The last part after the end of the maintained trail is a little sketchy, some ropes are there to help up but I wouldn’t place all your weight on them. The view from the top is definitely worth it.

Damn I loved this hike. One of my top 3 for 2018, along with Angel’s Landing in Zion and Old Rag in Shenandoah. If you feel confident in your balance and climbing skills, you need to go all the way to the top. If not, I wouldn’t risk it. Once you go past the end-of-maintained-trail sign, things get pretty hairy ... and fun. The ropes are fine for balance, but I wouldn’t trust them with full body weight. Another reviewer said one snapped. Take a pair of heavy gloves, even if it’s hot, for navigating the rocks at the top, and especially on the way down from the peak. I took a couple long breaks and several short ones on the way up. It’s a great workout. This is a bucket list hike for me.

Perfect day, awesome view of Ranier, Olympics, Cascades. Fresh snow, ok without spikes to the talus field. Possible to do the talus field to the Mailbox without spikes or poles on the ascent, coming down you will struggle without at least spikes and spend most of the time on your backside. This is a longer hike than as listed, I’ve done the new trail as an out & back twice now and it clicks at ~12 miles/19.5 km. With snack breaks, pictures, spikes on/off this is a 6 to 6.5 hour hike in winter unless you are really humping it.

21 days ago

Nice, easy loop to break in some new snowshoes. Fairly crowded and the messy parking situation notwithstanding, it's an ok way to enjoy some the snow and mountains.

24 days ago

Great hike! Conditions last week of December were good. A few muddy spots. A few down trees, but nothing serious. There was a little snow at the top, but none on the trail.

The climb starts off very steep. If you have a hard time at the start, expect the same difficulty for the duration of the climb. I would say the last .5 miles is a pretty narrow trail and probably isn’t the best for people with a fear of heights. It also gets a little steep, I would call it a scramble. There are fixed ropes in place but note these aren’t the best ropes. One broke on someone in front of me on the way down. Overall, I would say this a difficult hike. Proper gear, water, and snacks should be used.

In terms of day hikes, this one is was tough. Bring water

Did this on 12/21/18. Moderate usage on this day. Didn’t start until 11:45ish a.m. I had on regular trail shoes, sweat bottoms, a couple thin base layers and a thick hoodie, light gloves/beanie, and a daypack with some snacks and about 2L of water. Temperature was high 30s/low 40s for the first couple of hours and I got really warm and was drinking more water than I expected. Once we hit the snow it got considerably colder. My hiking partner had on Nike trainers. People coming down the trail had poles and chains and kept telling us we couldn’t make it to the top without them. We went all the up anyway, just took longer and had to be more careful of our footing. Coming down took a bit longer again due to not having the poles and chains but it was definitely possible, just be extra careful on your footing and take it slow. If I did this hike again during this time of year I would definitely get some chains, but the poles probably not necessary if you’re in good hiking shape. Last couple hundred feet were pretty tough. I drank more water than expected, so not a bad idea to take a little more than you think you’ll need. Oh yeah- the gate at the parking area closes at 4pm. We didn’t make it all the way back to the car until roughly 5pm. They actually waited for us before locking up, but they were not happy about it. I didn’t even notice the 4pm closure sign, so that was my bad.

26 days ago

Beautiful, easy for snowshoeing

29 days ago

This seems like a nice trail but we only got about a half mile before the constant and loud sound of gunfire from a nearby shooting range freaked out our dog and forced us to turn back. If you or your canine friend are bothered by the sound of gunfire this might not be the trail for you.

Beautiful! On our own... light traffic...several viewpoints! Little muddy. No snow yet. Rain held off today! Hallelujah! Wonderful first full day of winter!

Best day hike ever......but you must be in good shape....... for this butt kicker. I'm 64 years old.

1 month ago

Road is closed 3mi before the trailhead. Plan ahead to hike to the trail or use a snowmobile. Didn’t manage to get to the trailhead so giving a neutral rating.

We did this hike on Saturday, November 8th, and it was perfect! Trail conditions were great, there was no snow or ice, and the ropes at the top were all intact. The hike itself is steep, but not that long, so if you're in any kind of decent shape, you'll be fine, just take a few breaks along the way. Absolutely stunning views at the top!

Was looking for any easy hike to enjoy the PNW and the snow. Wasn’t too crowded when we started but more people arrived mid day. Some spots were icy so we stayed to the side of the trail. As a dog owner of two, I find it sad to see other dog owners not picking up after their dogs.

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