Best trails in Capitol State Forest, Washington

2,268 Reviews
Looking for a great trail in Capitol State Forest, Washington? AllTrails has 32 great hiking trails, trail running trails, mountain biking trails and more, with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers, and nature lovers like you. Ready for some activity? There are 14 moderate trails in Capitol State Forest ranging from 1.2 to 39.6 miles and from 242 to 2,660 feet above sea level. Start checking them out and you'll be out on the trail in no time!
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Map of trails in Capitol State Forest, Washington
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Top trails (32)
#1 - Mima Falls East Trail
Capitol State Forest
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(645)
Length: 4.7 mi • Est. 2 h 16 m
A Discovery Pass is required to enter Capitol State Forest. Off-road vehicle users and horse-back riders can use Capitol State Forest Trails from May 1 - November 30 only. This Mima Falls Trail connects to other trails in the area which may not be well marked. Be sure to stay on the route in the map or have a map handy along the way. Mima Falls is one of the highlights of the many trails that make up the expansive Capitol State Forest. The hike is mostly easy, though you will pass through many muddy sections. It takes you through both old and new as well as cleared forests. Mima Falls is a nice little 25 foot falls worth checking out. Mima Falls takes its name from the nearby Mima Mounds. Mima is a Native term meaning a little further along. Over the years, the Washington Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has worked with volunteers to build up the trail system in Capitol State Forest, expanding on the network of logging roads. It is likely that at least some portions of this trail are built on sections of former logging roads that once led to logging camps that supplied the sawmills in the lumber boom town of nearby Bordeaux. Established by the Bordeaux Brothers back in 1896, this area of the Black Hills were logged for over 40 years until the old growth timber ran out and Bordeaux became a ghost town in 1941. While Capitol State Forest has been a recreation destination for decades, the Mima Falls Trailhead and Campground was not built until 1973. In 2013 the DNR completed an overhaul of the Capitol State Forest Trail system that renamed most of the trails. Older guides will reference these outdated trail names.Show more
#2 - Mima Falls Loop
Capitol State Forest
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(353)
Length: 6.6 mi • Est. 3 h 17 m
#3 - McLane Creek Woods Trail
Capitol State Forest
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(210)
Length: 2.1 mi • Est. 56 m
A Discovery Pass is required to enter Capitol State Forest. Note: Parts of this trail is ADA accessible.Show more
#4 - Porter Creek Falls
Capitol State Forest
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(149)
Length: 1.8 mi • Est. 58 m
#5 - Lost Valley Trail and McKenny Trail Loop
Capitol State Forest
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(144)
Length: 8.3 mi • Est. 3 h 21 m
Please note that this trail was reported closed due to logging as of 6/29/2020, please check with Capitol State Forest before hiking. A Discovery Pass is required to enter Capitol State Forest. Off-road vehicle users and horse-back riders can use Capitol State Forest Trails from May 1 - November 30 only. This loop begins by following the Mima Falls Trail West (Trail No. 8 across for the parking spot) for 0.4 mile down to a junction in the Lost Valley Creek. The trail on your left is your return route. These trails are in excellent shape thanks to the volunteer work of the Back-country Horsemen (and women) of Washington. Head right on Trail No. 20. Climbing gradually, pass a few big firs, a lot of skunk cabbage, and an active beaver pond. In 1.4 miles come to a junction with Trail No. 6, the Green Line ( It will say Green Line as soon as you cross the Logging Road). Turn left and follow this good trail. Climb a bit more, and after crossing a logging road enter a mature second-growth forest. Begin a long descent into the Sherman Creek valley. At 2.6 miles emerge from the forest to cross a recent cut. Notice the temperature change. Notice Capitol Peak and Larch Mountain in front of you. At 3.25 miles reach the lovely Sherman Creek valley, where you'll come to another trail junction. The trail right crosses the creek (bridge out as of summer 2006) and heads to the Fall Creek trailhead and onward to the Capitol Crest. You'll want to continue left for an enjoyable journey down the valley. Plenty of lunch spots along the way will entice you to take a break. After about 3 miles of hiking along the creek you'll come to an old trail junction. There used to be a trailhead on the other side of the creek, but it and the road no longer exist. This decommissioning has helped return a little solitude to this region. The trail now leaves Sherman Creek to follow Lost Valley Creek upstream. This is the best part of the loop. Under a canopy of moss-draped alders and big cedars, the trail uses an old logging railroad bed. After 1 mile of heading up Lost Valley Creek, look for trestle remnants. Look, too, along the creek for relics from the old logging days. Broken bricks and porcelain plates litter the area. Be sure to leave these artifacts for others to enjoy. Show more
#6 - Mima Mounds Trail
Capitol State Forest
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(141)
Length: 2.6 mi • Est. 1 h 4 m
A Discover Pass is required to enter the Capitol State Forest. Mima Mounds are a natural prairie land of puzzling mounds that have baffled scientist and geologists for years. They are definitely worth a look if you're in the Capitol State Forest area. The mounds are the major attraction with a couple of kiosks that explain the possible reasons for their existence. There are a couple of loop trails to take you through the area that are paved. There are also side trails (unpaved) where you can walk around the mounds and experience them, as well as the wildflowers, up close and personal. There is a 0.5 mile loop that is ADA accessible.Show more
#7 - Mima Falls Trail and McKenny Trail Loop from Margaret McKenny Campground
Capitol State Forest
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(85)
Length: 13.4 mi • Est. 6 h 41 m
Note: As of September 2020, part of the trail is closed due to logging until 9-30-20 however most of this trail is still accessible.Show more
#8 - Equine Loop from Margaret KcKenny Campground via McKenny Trail
Capitol State Forest
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(53)
Length: 3.3 mi • Est. 1 h 41 m
A Discovery Pass is required to enter Capitol State Forest. Off-road vehicle riders and horseback riders may use the Capitol State Forest trails from May 1 - November 30 only.Show more
#9 - Rock Candy Mountain Trail
Capitol State Forest
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(65)
Length: 30.4 mi
A Discovery Pass is required to enter Capitol State Forest. Off-road vehicle users and horseback riders can use Capitol State Forest Trails from May 1 - November 30 only. There may be partial closures on this trail due to logging operations.Show more
#10 - North Rim Trail to Rock Candy Mountain East Trail
Capitol State Forest
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray Star(66)
Length: 5.8 mi • Est. 3 h 35 m
Please note that this is a shared-use trail between motor vehicles and foot traffic for a majority of the year. Off-road vehicle users and horse-back riders can use Capitol State Forest Trails from May 1 - November 30 only. A Discovery Pass is required to enter Capitol State Forest.Show more
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