Mount Pugh Trail

HARD 18 reviews
#15 of 85 trails in

Mount Pugh Trail is a 10.1 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Darrington, Washington that features a lake and is only recommended for very experienced adventurers. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is best used from May until December. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
10.1 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
5380 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

birding

hiking

nature trips

walking

forest

lake

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

scramble

Directions from Darrington: Drive the Mt. Loop Hwy. for 14 miles to Road #2095 on the left. Proceed for 1 mile. A marked trailhead lies ahead.

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

Hiked solo to mount Pugh.

Road in very good condition, I've arrived from Darlingtonn side, not Mountain Loop Highway, much less gravel road this way.
Started at 11:30 and reached the top around 3 pm, returned to trailhead at 6pm. I did couple stops - at small lake and at boulder field. I've met three or four people going up as well, but seems they all turned around at scrambling part, to be honest I also thought about it all the way up since I don't have lot of scramble expirience, all scrambling I did before was much easy. I met last people going down when I scrambled the ridge and I climbed to the top completely alone and stayed at summit almost half hour also alone, the mountain was mine :) Views around supposd to be just awesome and you should see many peaks and mountains, but bad thing is that smoke has returned again and I've seen Galcier peak and Baker little bit.

some notes from me:

1) Bring a lot of water, there is only one accessable stream at the begining, nothing more. I brought 2.5 liters and was out of water at half way down.
2) Go early to avoid oncoming cars at development road, it too narrow.
3) Watch Pugh scramble on youtube before and If you decide you ok with that, than go! Apart that scramble most of the trail is pretty boring, neverending swithcbacks just killing me sometimes.
4) Way to the true summit from the false summit easier than way from the ridge to the false summit.
5) Way down on scramble part was easy than way up, usually vise-versa
6) Bring light backpack, I brought mine 38 liters osprey with all essentials, too heavy for scrambling.
7) Don't forget to put your name in notepad at capsule on the top.

hiking
2 months ago

I am not sure hoe to describe this hike. I think this hike could be anywhere from a three to five star rating. I happen to do it on a five star day. There is no parking lot but there seems to be ample parking on the road and you might have to add a few hundred yards to your hike. The trail starts and ends in the shade so that is a plus. The part through the trees and past the last is one of the best trails around in regards to upkeep and no obstructions. Once you enter into the boulder field you are pretty much exposed the rest of the hike. On a really hot day this would suck as I am not one for hot hot days in the sun, so more of an opinion. The hike to the pass now begins and before you know it you are at the pass. We caught a window where the wildflowers on this hill were incredible with the wide variety of colors. The trail from the wooded section to the pass is rocky and not as stable as it could be in places. I think it took about 2 hours and 20 minutes to get to the pass. After the pass you continue up through some switchbacks. If you felt vertigo at the pass you might want to turn around there. After a few switchbacks you are put on a ridge line that you travel along for a ways. I have a little fear of heights but I did just fine despite the possible drop to once death at many points along this hike. This ridge line is solid and takes you across a saddle where you see the false summit. After the saddle requires some scrambling for a short bit and then you are on a trail the remainder of the way. Here there were more wildflowers but not as vivid as the ones to the pass as the elevation has stunted them. I reached the top in 3 hours and 30 minutes. My dog, which resembles a Corgi with her short legs had no trouble with the hike or the scrambles other then some minor assistance, which she probably didnt need.

Incredible views in all direction from the top, Baker, Adams, Rainier, the Olympics, someone said Whistler/Blackcomb but I am not sure. Anyways, it was a five star day. There are other hikes that I prefer, like Vesper. I cant say why though. Its a hike that all should do if they are up for a challenge and an awesome view. I did this hike last year and we hit snow so we didnt get much past the pass but seeing what lies ahead of the pass I am glad we didnt press on. This hike is a must do but only if you are in shape and its a NICE CLEAR day. Dont get me wrong, I am always up for a work out and a challenge but on an overcast day I would just hike Dickerman nearby.

hiking
2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

Amazing trail, camped at the lake and left around 9. Once over the ridge it becomes a more exposed, some loose gravel and snow made it a little harder to traverse, bring good boots! views at the top are absolutely worth it. Bug spray might be needed at the lake, but they weren't too bad.

hiking
3 months ago

hiking
8 months ago

Beautiful winter hike. Had to park about 1 mile away from trail head b/c of road conditions. I would recommend snow shoes and/or at least spikes for your boots.

hiking
11 months ago

Mt Pugh late October was great. But so slushy deep snow eventually turned me and all I saw, included dung a group that app armed prepared for snow. Made it to work pass. Still a beautiful hike to that point. I expect others will want to summit despite the snow.

hiking
Sunday, August 14, 2016

The switchbacks to Stujack pass were steep and almost the trail was exposed after that. The ridge cross was fine,nothing scaring. But the scramble to the peak was quite long and you need to look for cains for the boot path, otherwise, the climb could be quite hard.

Thursday, May 05, 2016

Epic! The 360 view at the top is worth the work. There are a handful of exposed areas just passed stujack, but nothing too serious.

Monday, October 05, 2015

I am certainly a beginner hiker. I have only hiked about ten trails in my life and that has been over the course of a month. Of these trails the largest amount of elevation gain was only about 3000feet over 11 miles. I am definitely not a fit guy but I was able to summit Pugh on my first try.( with no experience at all) It was very hard though. On the last bit of scramble to the top make sure to pay attention to the trail markers. I found myself straying on what appeared to be the path and found myself in quite a pickle. To all beginners out there thinking of attempting this hike remember that you can always turn around and don't attempt any thing that makes u feel uncomfortable! This hike offers wonderful views almost the entire time so u can feel accomplished no matter how far you get! Stories all over the web describe this as a scary hike and for experts! I did not find this true at all. Hard. Yes! But not impossible. Enjoy!

Friday, August 28, 2015

Correction on my review: It was based on summiting Mt Pugh. To the pass, not bad at all, though it's still quite steep and exposed from the break of the forest to the pass. (The pic of me sitting solo is at the pass whereas the others are from Pugh's summit.

hiking
Wednesday, August 26, 2015

First time, I had to turn around a 1000 vertical feet from the summit because the sole of my shoe detached. It was a thorn in my side for three years until the summer of 2013 when my friends and I conquered the mountain on likely the best of days. Views were extraordinary and we hung out on the summit for at least an hour before begrudgingly heading back down.

hiking
Saturday, January 04, 2014

hiking
Monday, December 31, 2012

Great hike. Go to the top, for some reason the climb seems scarier than the descent. Tough hike. Not for beginners.

hiking
Sunday, July 08, 2012

This was a short but intense hike, but the feeling of success when you get to the top was a reward. Trail only had mud in 3 or 4 places and one of the easiest trail on feet and knees in a while. We intended to do Goat Lake but i forgot my hiking boots and place was packed by the time we returned. We decided to continue past Barlow Pass and see where we ended up. Mt Pugh was apparently the place we were going. I and my hiking partner only went to lake as I admit the 3100 ft elevation gain in 1.8 miles kicked my butt but was a great conditioning hike. Might save this one for when I want a quick hike with a great workout.

hiking
Saturday, July 07, 2012

hiking
Sunday, September 25, 2011

(This review is for Mt. Pugh)

It's a stretch to say that the 3,760' hike to Stujack Pass (5,700') is by itself worth the pain. The restricted views at the Pass, while nice, simply don't compare with those that can be gained with similar effort at nearby Mt. Dickerman and Forgotten Meadows.

But it's no exaggeration to say that climbing the remaining 1,500' to the broad, dynamite-flattened summit will reward you with some of the best views of any day hike anywhere (the summit panorama, below, speaks for itself).

Before you go, though, be sure you're ready. First, car to summit is a gain of 5,260', which can't be approached casually. Second, though there's a boot path most of the way to the summit, the route is elusive at times and features significant, prolonged exposure -- not for the faint of heart. Third, there are some scramble sections reminiscent of the trickier parts of Mt. Si's haystack, only more exposed. Don't go without first doing your homework on sites like summitpost.org and wta.org.

My only regret about this hike is that we didn't bring our sleeping bags (the weather was perfect; no tents required!) and turn an epic day hike into an unforgettable trip.