Explore the most popular wild flowers 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.

We did the loop and the only negative I found was having to walk along the street to get back to our car and that is why I gave it 4 stars instead w 5.

fantastic! only one mosquito August 1 , a few deerfly. my 13 year old did this with me and loved it. saw multiple deer and eagles, under trees, next to the water and some Rocky areas keep it from getting boring and repetitive, scenery is gorgous

This is a hearty hike with spectacular views of Mt. St. Helens (only when you are up on the ridge) and of Coldwater Lake. I went counter-clockwise so did the elevation gain at the beginning. The view from the top of the ridge is wonderful and well worth the hard work to get there. As others have described the downhill portion is a bit overgrown, so hard to see your way and there are not any views because of the dense overgrowth.

The relatively flat north side of the lake is nice - and being rewarded with lake views now and then is a nice reward after the long descent from the ridge. I found a great lunch spot with about 5 km to go in the hike - with nice views, a cool breeze and some kayakers to watch. The only reason this hike doesn't get 5 stars is because of the mile or so that you have to walk on the highway. Not much of a shoulder on the blind curves - be careful. However you get some amazing views of Mt. St. Helens and the inside of the crater which takes a bit of the sting away. No mosquito's when I went in early August. I clocked in at 19.7 km.

Unmatched views of St.Helens. This trail is very long and completely open. Recommend bringing a hat and sunglasses or the sun will wear you down.

12 days ago

Great hike, super easy but great views for not a ton of effort. Beware though - we saw (not exaggerating) probably 20+ different rat snakes along the trail. They were harmless, but still... snakes.

hiking
13 days ago

Great views

hiking
24 days ago

Great views of Mt. St Helens the entire hike! This trail is well marked and trafficked. Devil’s Elbow isn’t maintained anymore—it is blocked off and there is an arrow pointing you to stay on the Boundary Trail. Was able to see Mt. Adams and Mt. Hood in the distance while on Harry’s Ridge. There are wildflowers everywhere you look. Pretty exposed hike, so make sure you’ve got sunscreen. I got to Johnston Ridge Observatory around 9:30 and the parking lot was mostly empty.

Excellent hike, I’ve been here 3 times but have only done the full loop once. I walk every day and have a lot of stamina but this hike was tough (at first, as I was ploughing through the hills!)

I suggest starting at the first parking lot (main entrance) and walking out to the main road and following it up to the second entrance. You have to walk on the road anyways for about a mile and I’d prefer to end my trip in the wild than on the road.

hiking
25 days ago

great trail for kids!

Very nice views of the mountain

Good flow and pretty lake views. You have to stop and swim. Best part of the ride.

1 month ago

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

1 month 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.

hiking
1 month 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
1 month 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
1 month 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
1 month 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
1 month 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
1 month 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.

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