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

22 hours ago

it was a great trail for beginners and going counterclockwise has better views of the mountain and overall was amazing

3 days ago

beautiful view of the lake.

I ran this trail on Monday although we went clockwise and started/ended in the north parking lot. The trail was in nice condition and the scenery was amazing with my favorite area being on the north side looking down on the lake. The elevation climb on the southeast side was tough turning it into more of a hike for me during that portion but it made the last downhill portion back to the car a reward. Even though the last bit is on the highway it didn't take long and the shoulder is plenty wide to avoid becoming road pizza. Total distance came in at about 11.83 miles with 2,178' of elevation gain according to my device.

I am a new hiker with few skills. This was the first time I have ever hiked at any type of elevation or had to bring in water and food...I even brought in a change of clothes just in case so my bag was kinda full. all that being said, I found the first part very steep. I had to stop many times for a break but after that first mile or so it really gets easier. There was also a long section where there were bugs everywhere so I would recommend bug repellent of some sort. It was so beautiful and I'm glad I went. the trail was really easy to follow and the sketchiest part of the hike was the last half mile on the road. Because of the time of year there were several groups if hikers on these trails. There is a bathroom at a lake access point towards the last fourth of the hike if you don't like going outside.

Easy access with great views. More of a walkway than a trail.

hiking
9 days ago

Great trail with beautiful views! Great for family with older kids (8+ years)

Was a beautiful trail. The machinery was cool to investigate. Used trekking poles and was very manageable for even the novice hiker.

Nice farily easy hike around the lake. We parked at the lot and went counter clockwise to get the highway part of the hike out of the way first which was nice. Very well maintained trail.

hiking
13 days ago

Very little work for a LOT of payoff. Well established, easy trail with some of the most amazing views of St. Helens that you'll ever see. Went in early July and the Wildflowers were absolutely amazing. Keep in mind there are NO DOGS ALLOWED (most hikes in and around this area are no pet zones). Also, the original trail I downloaded from AllTrails had it marked to actually take the Devil's Elbow trail. Once you get there, there is a sign that says not to take it, and for good reason. You would be hugging a cliff side on a trail with loose dirt. DON'T TAKE DEVIL'S ELBOW, just stay on Boundary Trail.

Great hike - Weather was cloudy, so we did not see the top of Mt st Helen, but the views of the valley were awesome! Nice flowers and awesome views! Not to be missed!

I like the view of MSH and surrounding area, the incredible wild flowers, and the diverse elevation. The late June weather was ideal. It was crowded but not in an annoying way. We saw a mountain goat at the top in the distance.

There are some real pluses and minuses to this trail. Lots of people at beginning since it takes off from the main parking lot of Johnston Ridge Observatory. Easy to get there so no problems with rough roads. First 3 miles had some great views of Mount St. Helens with awesome display of wildflower colors. After cut off to Harry’s Ridge, definitely less people. A couple of minor sketchy areas that just require good balance and poles around the Hole in the Wall. Great views from the top of Coldwater Peak but spoiled somewhat by the equipment up there I presume aimed at St Helen’s Crater for monitoring. Take plenty of water for mostly exposed hiking and bring your NW pass for $ off on hiking and parking.

hiking
22 days ago

Nice interpretive trail at the end of Coldwater Lake just below the Visitor Center. The boardwalk takes you out into the water... Saw a snake. Picnic tables provide a nice place to relax with a cool breeze off the lake.

hiking
24 days ago

A starkly beautiful hike with numerous pay-off views along the way, including MSH, Spirit Lake, Adams, etc. Hot and dry on the way up at 11AM, but we were eating a humble but well earned lunch at the top by 12:30. Thunderheads and light rain showers were a welcome relief on the way back - really perfect weather, perfect day! This hike reveals overwhelming evidence of the devastation that happened in 1980 - and all the wounds still look so immediate and violent, a severe and devastating beauty surrounds you. It would be completely believable to see Smaug fly out from the fuming remains of this blown out crater, or to tremble before the lidless Eye of Sauron above the mortally wounded mountain that still dominates this aching wasteland. Bring lembas

My friends and I ran/walked this loop. Very beautiful. There is a few 5-6 creek crossings, but easy. The climb at the north end of lake is pretty steep, but the views from the top are spectacular! At the end you have to use 1.5 miles of pavement to get back to your car in the other parking lot. Trail is in good repair.

My friends and I ran/walked from Coldwater Lake parking lot to Hummock to Johnsons ridge observatory then to boundary trail. We didn't go to the end of the boundary trail, we cut off at Coldwater trail then tied into South Coldwater trail and ended up in south parking lot. AMAZING scenery but difficult.

My first time seeing Mt Saint Helens! Started at the South entrance which was a great recommendation to get the climb over at the beginning. But, the hike back to the car is on the main road! Would not suggest doing this alone. With my imagination and all the strange looks from passing cars, I thought I’d never get back to my car. :). Hehee

hiking
29 days ago

Beautiful hike with great views the entire way. Wildflowers are blooming right now red and purple. There is a bypass of the devils elbow section, clearly marked. Start early to avoid the inevitable crowds, trail etiquette gets rough close to the observatory.

hiking
29 days ago

hot today.. sun was a killer

I just finished this hike and I am so darn sore!!! started at 6:30am and finished at 12:33. It's a must do trail! if you do the loop be aware you will be walking on the highway for over a mile to get back to the s coldwater trailhead.

Great day hike with Great Lake and Mountain View’s. Family friendly trail with little elevation gain. Not much shade as with most St Helens hikes so bring sun screen. Trailhead starts at the Coldwater boat launch and no dogs are allowed on the trail. Happy hiking. I only did the coldwater north trail. The loop is significantly more strenuous.

Awesome Trail!

hiking
1 month ago

Nice, beautiful, easy hike for the littles.

Solid hike. Start at the trailhead by the boat launch, easy to find. Also, the boat launch has restrooms. The trail itself is narrow, single file for sure. Great views of the lake on both sides of the trail. at first the going is easy, flat, and family friendly. Once you cross the river, the trail ascends and the mosquitoes can be extremely intense. You ascend a ridge and eventually come to an old logging site. Take a right at the junction and follow the trail along the ridge line. You'll know you're going the right way when you see rusted out machinery. 3/4 of the trail is shaded. Trail is a 4 due to soggy conditions and the 1.25 mile walk on the road from the end of the trail back to the boat launch.

hiking
1 month ago

Loved this trail! It was a challenge (for a beginner) but definitely doable. Lots of ups and downs. Views are so worth the work! My favorite trail so far!

hiking
1 month ago

If you want to make the full loop, dont start with trail 212. The other end features a significant climb at the beginning, which is best done on fresh legs. The views at the top are incredible, and the rest of the way is all down hill or gently rolling. The only downside is the mile long walk between trail heads.

A good day hike to get in shape. Good views of the mountain and the wild flowers are in bloom.

Trail is in great condition. Some bugs in the brush.

hiking
1 month ago

Excellent trail! A lot of wild flowers this time of the year.

Did this South Coldwater/Lakes trail loop clockwise today. Bugs were pretty bad from the upper end of the lake to the top of the ridge. Black bear sitting on the side hill climbing from Coldwater Creek sip to the South ridge. Trails in excellent condition for hiking. Easy to follow and not too overgrown. This is not an easy hike, but doable with young teens and adults in reasonable shape. Took about 6 hours with breaks including the 1.5 miles on the road.

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