Explore the most popular nature trips 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.

Holy cow that was amazing!! Definitely worth makeing it to the upper falls

Amazing trail-- this is the only way to summit during the winter months (we went mid may and was still the technically winter). Would recommend crampons, hiking poles, and an extra trash bag to glissade down on!

A beautiful hike! Easy trail to follow and not hard at all. Beautiful views of Lower, Middle, & Upper Falls. Be careful by the overhanging rock face part of the trail as it seems rocks fall often in this area. Other than that the trail is very safe.

When is it open??? I tried many times to come here but its always closed

hiking
11 days ago

I really enjoyed this (far more than I expected). We did the section with all the climbing over rocks. I did plan on returning with two nieces (ages 10 and 13) but I think I will wait a year or three to bring them to do that. I would worry about them falling but I absolutely loved it. It was wet in places and there were patches of snow on the ground when we came out the end. I also really enjoyed the walk on the trail from the upper part back to the car - great forest smells!

hiking
15 days ago

Pretty cool trail! The fact that you’re walking through these large channels of lava tubes is amazing. It’s nice to see the changes in height and width as you walk through as well as the draft that is created when you get to the narrow portions of the trail. Make sure you bring a couple of head lights and be prepared for it to get quite crowded.

hiking
17 days ago

Lot tougher then expected, the grades toward the top were rough. Crampons at 1 mile, snowshoes at about 2.5. Sunscreen is a must. Also make sure you wear easy to remove layers. left the lot at 0530 it was in the 20's, in a mile was down to a tee shirt. Was sunny and in the 70's really wished the snow pants I had on had shorts under them for the climb up. Loved them glissading on the way down though.

challenging walk in the cave. don't go alone. went in with warm water and came out the other end with nice cold water.

hiking
18 days ago

super fun! bring a good head lamp and a warm jacket it gets cold in the caves!

hiking
22 days ago

First time here, very cool experience. Went on the last day of an April heat wave, snow was very soft. Can’t wait to go back again sometime. Make sure you bring snow shoes, crampons, and an ice axe. 98% of everyone out that day had snow shoes and trekking poles. I got away with crampons till I switched to snow shoes the last couple hundred yards, though I’m not sure that was any easier.

snowshoeing
23 days ago

A fantastic climb, make sure you bring snowshoes, crampons (or at least micro spikes) and an ice axe. Be careful at the top, there is a cornice at the edge of the summit that is difficult to see at first. Incredible views, next time I’ll brings skis.

Loved the falls in the spring the water is running. Great time awesome Falls.

hiking
26 days ago

First time hiking a real mountain and I’m officially hooked. Went on 4/22/18 and lucked out with a very clear day. Views of Mt. Adams, Mt. Hood, Mt. Jefferson, and Mt. Rainier. Summiting was an awesome experience!!!

Trail was well maintained and absolutely gorgeous. I’m new to hiking, and really out of shape but with breaks on the hills i managed to middle falls and back. Couple muddy spots but no issue getting through/around them. Absolutely worth the hard work to get there!

walking
28 days ago

You have to pay for parking and the trail is pretty busy. In some spots I had to wait 15 min for people to get through funnels in the trail or climb over certain rocks. BRING A LIGHT SOURCE.

Beautiful falls. Trail was nice.

Was very fun, VERY easy. I only gave it 3 because I probably wouldn’t go all the way there to do it again. Pretty damp, wear boots for the water puddles and such. Great little trip with friends. Bring a bright headlamp and gloves! Enjoy.

Area Status: Unreachable
https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/giffordpinchot/recarea/?recid=41610

Beautiful!!!

Beautiful old forest

on Ape Cave Trail

hiking
1 month ago

Fun trail to walk, and great view!

hiking
1 month ago

Unlike anything I’ve ever done... make sure if you do the lower trail you are prepared to do a lot of climbing!

hiking
1 month ago

One of a kind! The road was closed but you can park and walk .8 of a mile to the trailhead. There is still snow on the trail. So waterproof hiking boots help a lot! We did the lower cave and it was very easy. We plan on returning this summer to explore the upper cave!

AMAZING HIKE!! I wouldn’t call it a moderate trail unless it’s referring to just the distance. Nice general grade for the most part but well worth it. Will go back in the warmer months for some swimming, there are some great pools I’d love to jump into.

By far the best hike I have ever been on, hands down!! Some of the biggest and most beautiful waterfalls around. I will recommend this hike to everyone from now on! Amazing!!!

hiking
1 month ago

The primary winter route. I have done this route seven (7) times this 2017/2018) winter. On a nice day you will have an amazing view. Basic mountaineering gears will be essential for your safety. Have snowshoes and crampons ready as they may be the deciding factor between you making it to the summit rim or turning around. Some day you can just boot it to the summit but other days you will need snowshoes or crampons as you will posthole or slide on ice. Just be prepared and you will have a great time here.

A really unique hike. I did it solo and quickly felt it would have been a better time with a few other people. Make sure you have at least two durable and dependable head lamps. Some rock scrambling is necessary. Hiked March 6th, and it was warmer in the cave than outside, at about 40*.

it was about a year ago that I went on this trail but it is super cool and unique, very beautiful. I am a Utah residing Washington native and this is probably my favorite hike of all time. I would, however, recommend bringing a sweatshirt, a headlight, and a handheld light (per person). Extra batteries wouldn't hurt, either. I love this trail, though!

hiking
3 months ago

be sure to get a snow pass for 23 dollars which can be purchased at the local store before the trail otherwise it's a 100 dollar fine. slushy snow at the start you have to walk about three quarters of a mile to the cave entrance due to snow. cave drips from the ceiling all throughout snow is at about 3ft right now upon departing the upper cave entrance. kind of a tight squeeze here and there. hardest part of cave is a 6 ft shear faced wall you have to actually climb up. not really for the faint of heart be sure to have a fully charged flashlight or headlamp because it's a cave and its pitch black, there's an opening in the ceiling about 4 fifths of the way through the cave, thats when you know you've almost made it. to get back down the mountain follow the blue/green diamonds. enjoy be safe check for conditions and landslide information before heading out.

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