Gorgeous hike once you finally reach the top. It's a steady climb up, up, up a mountain. The switchbacks at the end are a huge help. The views are g'inormous. I camped with my dog in two different spots along the trail and hung out in the backcountry and LOVED it. Poles helped, going up and down due to the steep incline in some places. I disagree with the reviewer who says this mellowed out after 2 miles. No, it doesn't; Hope Pass is 12,500 ft in elevation.