PCT: WA Section H - Cascade Locks to Highway 12 (White Pass)

HARD 8 reviews

PCT: WA Section H - Cascade Locks to Highway 12 (White Pass) is a 139.7 mile moderately trafficked point-to-point trail located near Stevenson, Washington that features a great forest setting and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, camping, horses, and backpacking and is best used from June until October. Dogs and horses are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
139.7 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
27791 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Point to Point

dog friendly

backpacking

camping

hiking

horseback riding

forest

views

backpacking
28 days ago

This hike started at Trout Lake, Wa, PCT mile 2226, for a 66 mile - 6.5 day hike to White Pass, Wa from 9-3-17 to 9-9-17. Trout Lake temp forecasted for 101. We left early and missed most of the heat and while hot, had cool offshore breeze all day. Elevation gain steady all day. Arrived at camp at 5pm, mile 2238. All set up and done by 7:45. In tent at 7:45pm

Day 2, PCT Mile 2238-2251. up at 5 AM, breakfast pack up by 7:20 AM. Hotter than yesterday and very smokey from Cascade Locks Fire. Had to hike with buff over face to breath better. Crossed wide fast flowing creek. Long gradual decent to lava springs. Lunch. Up to camp after seasonal spring mile 2251. .13.3 miles today. Dinner with neighbors. Bed at 8pm

Day 3, PCT Mile 2251-2262. Up at 6am. Set alarms for 5am then 5:30am and got up at 6am. We needed the extra morning sleep. Breakfast, packed up and got more water for the morning hike. Steep up til lunch and hotter than yesterday. Down til last water for 10 miles and level to camp at Walupt Lake trail jct. Camp at mile 2262. 7:20pm.

Day 4, PCT Mile 2262-2272. Up hill all day and all day and all day through Cispus Pass! Beautiful even with all the smoke from local fires! Refilled with water at Cispus River. Got extra cooking water that another small seasonal stream. Wanted to camp close to Cispus Basin. Had to push on up another mile to a wonderful camp at 2272.1. Had dinner with two Northbounders. Got to bed late by 830.

Day 5, PCT Mile 2272-2279. (NOTE: I forgot to start track until PCT-Old Snowy Jct. Adding another 1043ft to elevation. Total Elevation is 1765ft. Total elevation gain is not known for this section) Northbounders are gone first thing. Took my time. Decided my plan for the day was go to McCall Basin. Up up up all the way to the junction of PCT an old snowy. Talked to northbounder who was now southbounding. She skipped Oregon and South bounded Washington to avoid fires. She was coming to grips that this may be her last leg due to fires. I stayed here for over an hour. Had cell service contacted Friends and Family. Texted other family on The Knife. Got water on the other side. Found camp at mile 2279, half-mile before McCall basin. In tent by 730 because of the cold and the wind. Cooler tonight. I put the fly on tonight. Could rain.

Day 6, PCT Mile 2279-2287. Chilly night but not bad. Up late. Breakfast and coffe, packed up and left at 9:30am. Getting ride for a Saturday pickup. Planning on staying at campsite after Shoe Pass. Trail is downhill to Lutz Lake. Got almost 2 liters of water. Hard to filter. Lake questionable. Saw the kids (a couple we've been leapfrogging all week, dubbed them "The Kids") at Lutz. Down and level till after campsite. Up up up til Hidden Springs jct. took break. The kids arrived about 10 min later. Up til Shoe Lake jct and right to Shoe Lake. Got water and lunch. Up and up til Shoe Lake Pass. The kids arrived about 5 min later. :) Walked over the Pass to campsite CS2287. Passed it since my apps couldn't agree. Came back and the kids had the spot I wanted. I took a more exposed site but really good if it doesn't rain. :) In tent by 5pm. Cool and windy after sun went below ridge behind us. Made coffee and dinner. Let kids borrow my stove. Twice. They had fuel. Contacted all the family. Time now is 8:06pm. Almost time for bed. Cold and blowing all night. Tent caved in from all sides all night. High winds. Kids helped me pack up in the morning...very windy! No breakfast up here. 5 miles till White Pass. No track for this 5 miles (phone battery low). Took my time. Arrived at Trailhead at 10:55...right on time. Wonderful trip and beautiful despite all the smoke. An awesome experience. Next year...I'll shoot for over 100 miles in one hike. :)

backpacking
4 months ago

Friday, October 14, 2016

backpacking
Sunday, September 11, 2016

This was a 27 mile southbound hike of the PCT from White Pass, to the Snowgrass Trailhead in the Goat Rocks. It was 2.5 days and over the Labor Day weekend from 9-3-16 to 9-5-16. I was shuttled to and from both locations which made the point-to-point hike possible.

Day 1: White Pass to Lutz Lake
Day 2: Lutz Lake to Snowgrass Flats
Day 3. Snowgrass Flats to Snowgrass Trailhead #96.

9-3-16
I started hiking at 9:15am and stopped for a snack at Shoe Lake at around 1:30pm. I had 3 camping options, Shoe Lake, Hidden Springs and Tieton Pass. I found camping is restricted at Shoe Lake. I guess I didn’t do my research completely. However, it was too early in the day for that anyway. I tried hiking to Shoe Lake a couple years before but was stopped by snow and was glad to see the trail to Shoe Lake was clear.

I arrived at Hidden Springs, my second camping option shortly after leaving Shoe Lake, too early for camping so I skipped the .3 miles to check it out. Tieton Pass, was touted by hikers heading northbound as being open with camping but I found just the opposite. While being somewhat open, there is kind of a suitable flatter spot that could be used in a pinch if arriving at dusk or later. Since this wasn’t what I expected, I headed further south toward Lutz Lake hoping to find a spot.

I arrived at Lutz Lake, not one of my camping options, knowing from northbound hikers it was already crowded. I got there at 4:30pm to find a group of 4 with 3 tents setup and flat spots for two more tents. They offered me a spot next to them and I took it without hesitation. A section-hiker took the spot next to me. It was interesting and fun to share tent sites with 5 other people. I was fortunate to have this space. Lutz Lake is small and shallow and as near as I can tell a stagnant pool of water. It was hard to tell if it was flowing or not.

9-4-16
I left Lutz Lake at 8:35am the next morning but needed to get water at the lake. I clogged my Sawyer Mini and blew out the provided bladder at the neck trying to filter that water. I was able to get some water before the blowout and saw there were possible water options before The Knife which was my main concern, so I pressed on. There are more tent sites along the PCT after Lutz Lake within a mile of the lake. Good to know for next time

The accent from Lutz Lake to Elk Pass is a beautiful one indeed, especially hiking above timberline. I have never seen that side of the Goat Rock Wilderness and took many pictures. I found a water source halfway to Elk Pass and taped up my bladder well enough to fill my water reservoir. The meadows above that were breathtaking as were the views. You can’t go wrong.

Elk Pass was what I expected. Barren of tall vegetation, slightly windy and beautiful. It was clear there but you could tell the clouds were coming in and I was hoping The Knife would be clear. And it was for the most part. Wisps of clouds (fog really) were coming from west to east over The Knife but things were still visible. Around the 7000 ft. level the clouds came in thick and we were hiking The Knife in clouds (fog), white on both sides with nothing to see. The last 400 ft up to the junction of Old Snowy was one of the steepest sections I’ve hike in a while. Slow going but well worth it. As I was nearing the top and it was leveling out, there was a group of 6 hikers cooking lunch and having a wonderful time. I sat next to them and had a snack myself.

My camping destination was Snowgrass Flats and after lunch made my way in the fog down the PCT. The more I descended, the clearer it became and by the time I got to the junction of the PCT and Snowgrass trail #96, I removed all my warmer layers, took off my pant legs and found a tent site in warm sunny weather.

9-5-16
I woke up the next morning to frost on my tent fly since my tent was in the shade of large trees. The sun was out and I moved the tent and all my gear into the sun to thaw out. The morning was beautiful with warmer clear weather. A stark contrast to yesterday morning. I packed up and left by 10:20am to meet my ride at the trailhead at noon.

The weather for this hike as great, clouds and all. Being Labor Day Weekend, there was most likely more people than normal which made it fun. I have never hiked north of Old Snowy on the PCT and it was more beautiful than I hoped. I will do this hike again in a heartbeat but next time plan for 3-5 days…or more.

hiking
Sunday, April 17, 2016

Great trail to start your season!

hiking
Saturday, February 06, 2016

hiking
Saturday, August 22, 2015

Section hiked this trail with friend who is doing the entire PCT. Amazing adventure!

hiking
Tuesday, April 28, 2015