Explore the most popular trails near Cougar with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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Cougar, Washington Map
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hiking
snow
3 days ago

Attempted hike on 3/17/19 but never made it to trailhead. Road went from no snow to patches of snow to clear driving tracks to snow and ice covered tracks and snow in between of 6 inches. Turned around 4.5 miles from trailhead. Driving Outback with no snow tires or chains and felt it too risky. Even if I had made it to trail snow looked too deep for just micro spikes, not to mention being able to follow trail and maneuver ledges with big drop offs. Will try again in a month.

The drive to the trailhead has a bit of snow the last half mile.

The trail itself has snow from the start. It’s nicely padded in, and there was a ton of foot traffic but the trail is nice and wide. Tons of false summits and the top is very windy. Gorgeous views all the way up and back down.

Took about 5 hours to get to the top and 2.5 hours down

I wore cramp ons all the way and had 1 trekking pole. I didn’t use my pole much.

Attempted this today, however my Subaru Impreza was too low clearance to make it to the Marble Mountain Sno-Park trailhead. Roads were not plowed after the Cougar Sno-Park (USDA.gov updated that at noon today) and only higher clearance vehicles could make it due to the snow being rutted out. The bottom of my car was banked in the center between the two wheel tracks. However, even passing Jeeps were swerving and fishtailing as they made their way. We made it 1.5 miles from the trailhead by 5:45am but were forced to turn around after some helpful people pushed us out. Another impreza had to turn around as well. A crosstrek made it further, but they were scraping along the center of their car, not sure if they made it all the way. Hoping the warm weather melts more snow off the road. We also noted that the snow was becoming very slushy by 7am, may be indicative of the conditions on the trail.

This is a great hike and the views are spectacular! The hike can be challenging if you aren’t in tip top, but the experience is worth it!

Climbed March 10th and couldn't have asked for a better day! Conditions have definitely changed since then but I hope to get the chance to do this one again in the spring.

Trail was great. Be sure to guts against cramping.

hiking
no shade
off trail
rocky
scramble
snow
14 days ago

Beautiful sunny day. First major summit. Breathtaking view in every direction. Took us 12 hours up and down - very long hike. Very tenuous but worth it once you get to the top. Way down our knees were shaking the whole time and felt weak. Make sure to bring enough food and water for everyone. We used ice picks and Cranston’s at top (November). Would do again, but wouldn’t it to be so difficult physically.

Beautiful hike and definitely challenging. I got frustrated because the deep snow was very slushy in late April last year. I did have crampons and snowshoes but still didn't make it to the top. I plan to try again sometime.

Just wish my Alltrails didn't crap about 30ish minutes into a 4.5 hour hike... again...

Used crampons after I got out of the tree line. Coming down was easy the snow was soft. Didn’t have to use my ice axe one but trekking sticks going up. DRESS WARM for winter.

hiking
25 days ago

Wonderful snowshoe in Narnia! One of my favorites. Worth the three hour drive from Seattle. You can extend the hike to 6-8 miles by taking the loop and tracking along one of the legs of the trail to the backside of MSH.

SR503 was clear the entire way. Snow started at the adjacent FS road. SnowPark lot was plowed, but tamped down snow and ice. We used our 4 wheel drive, but did no need for the chains.

Trail can be tricky to find without a map! Especially if doing the longer loop. We had to cross along 244D and break trail along the way, sinking a few feet into the snow even with our snow shoes. The hill right before the turn off to the lake was a total white-out. But once we dropped down to the lake, things calmed down quite a bit and allowed for a lunch break.

Lake was half frozen and falls were in full force. Just a lovely trail.

snowshoeing
snow
1 month ago

Great Snowshoeing. Definitely need snowshoes. The trail actually starts about 1.3 miles from the designated trailhead due to the snow covered road. The roads are otherwise kept clear with bulldozers. Hike a bit further to leave the tree line and visit chocolate falls.

Get your snow park permit at the Cougar Store 16842 Lewis River Road.

went in October and got lucky with weather!!
70 degrees at the base 35 degrees at the top; midday.
takes a while 10 hrs up and back.
forest, for the first 1/3
large rock for next half
soft sand for the last 1/4 mile
soooo worth it when u hit the top!
Need good knees going down.....

hiking
1 month ago

Ape Caves was a challenging winter hike, but at the end you will be truly happy you did it. During the winter you will need a Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission Sno-Park permit to park near the Ape Caves. The permits cost $20/vehicle. We purchased our permits at the “Cougar Store, 16842 Lewis River Road” The roads leading to the Ape Cave trail-head are very well maintained, plowed and salted, even after the 14 inches we received on Friday night. The final .8 mile of NF-8303 road leading to the Main Ape Cave entrance is closed for the winter, you will need to park the Trail of Two Forest Interpretive Site parking lot and hike .8 mile uphill to the Ape Cave parking lot and cave entrance. We trail blazed in knee high of fresh powder snow and it was exhausting. It took us 50 mins to hike from the Trail of Two Forest Interpretive Site parking lot to Ape Cave entrance. It should have taken 14 mins. It took us about 3 hours to hike the upper Ape Caves and then nearly 2 mile hike back down to the parking lot where our vehicles were parked. Do it...you will not regret it!

hiking
snow
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

Great quick trail for kids

hiking
snow
1 month ago

I would recommend micro spikes and to bring snowshoes. It’s a beautiful area.

hiking
off trail
scramble
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

Great hike today. Took micro-spikes and it was perfect. Snowshoes would be fine but potentially more than needed, as the snow is packed down. Shoes without traction would be difficult but made easier with poles. Partial mountain views and lake reflection makes it a beautiful trek. Also walking creek side for part of it, which is also beautiful. Only con I could say would be the noise you occasionally hear from the snowmobiles nearby.
Don't forget to stop in Cougar to get a snow park pass. They were there today, giving tickets to cars without one. 1-26-19.

Beautiful hike and a fall ( October)day going again in October 2019

Beautiful hike and a fall ( October)day going again in October 2019

hiking
muddy
snow
1 month ago

Did this hike today and only needed Micro spike or diamond grips for secure traction. I recommend treking poles to prevent tripping over exposed rocks and tree roots. Enjoyed eating snacks in the heating hut back at the Marble Mountain sno park, it's open but please pack it out.

hiking
2 months ago

Road closed 5 miles from the trailhead due to snow. But I am excited to go back in the Spring.

Beautiful view of the waterfall and Lake. Did this hike a few years back. I would do it again.
For such a short hike it seemed like we were so far away when we got to the lake and falls. We were tempted to keep going on another trail we saw at the lake but since we were on our way back home we decided it wouldn’t be a good idea not knowing how far and how long it would take.

snowshoeing
2 months ago

This was my first snow shoe hike, we had really bad luck with rain and low visibility. But it was still a really good hike, my only complaint is the noise from the snowmobiles we had to deal with.

on June Lake Trail

2 months ago

Great winter hike. Easy out and back completed in snow boots. Bring snowshoes if you have them.

Oh my lord this cave is so unreal dope it’s not even funny. They let u just walk around and go rogue with a headlamp and u can just spend hours admiring the beauty of cave world. One of my favs in WA.

For a somewhat out-of-shape 50 year-old who used to be an athlete in my younger days, this was a great test of Character. Did it solo, as at the last week before, the others I was to be climbing with had to back out. Trained somewhat before doing this hike but not nearly what I would have liked to.
Very strenuous for me. Took almost 9 hours to do the round-trip. Thought I was in the clear after I got to the top but did not realize that coming down (Using hiking poles which, in my opinion is a must) was going to hurt even more. (Oh, my knees!!)
Even so, was a hike that I will remember forever.
If you leave early and pace yourself, it will be strenuous but doable and well worth it!!

The falls were gorgeous and the hike along the water was relaxing. Not technical, pretty easy

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