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Glacier View

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This trail stays just outside Mount Rainier National Park, but the highlights of the trek are the outstanding views east to the glaciers that cover the west flank of the big volcano. The trail is relatively flat and open, though at times the tread is rough and brushy--maintenance of the trail is a once-in-a-while occurrence. Fortunately, the path is easy to follow and offers a wonderfully unique view of Mount Rainier. Few people get to see the west face of the mountain from this close. Since the trail is completely outside the park, dogs are welcome on it.

From the trailhead, head east on a short way trail to intercept the main Glacier View Trail in just 0.1 mile, just after entering the Glacier View Wilderness Area. Veer left (north) onto the Glacier View Trail and follow it along a low ridgeline, skirting along the boundary of the wilderness area.

The trail meanders north with gradual change in elevation over the next 1.6 miles. The terrain around the trail includes cool stands of forest and open, sun-drenched hillside meadows. Great huckleberry brambles can be found along the first mile of trail, bringing out berry pickers of both the two-legged variety (humans and birds) and those going on four legs (bears and small mammals).

At about 1 mile, the trail swings west around a knoll before curving back to the east to climb through a low gap for brief views of Mount Rainier. Con-tinue bearing generally north and, at about 1.6 miles, reach a junction with the Lake Helen Trail to the right; stay straight. A rough trail leads left another 0.3 mile to a ridge top. Climb another hundred feet to the 5,450-foot summit of Glacier View--yet another former lookout site. The views stretch out in all directions, but for your own peace of mind, you'll want to stick with the north-, east-, and south-facing views. Look to the west, and the splendor of this hike is lost as you look out over endless acres of clear-cut scars.
Driving Directions:

From Tacoma, drive east on State Route 7 to Elbe, then veer left onto SR 706 to Ashford. Continue 3.8 miles east of Ashford and turn left (north) onto Forest Road 59 (Copper Creek Road). Continue 9 miles up this road to the trailhead on the right (elevation 4750 feet).

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Recent Trip Reports

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There are 56 trip reports for this hike. See all trip reports for this hike.
Glacier View, Gobblers Knob — Nov 03, 2013 — discohighker
Day hike
Issues: Snow on trail | No water source
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We went to Glacier View last weekend and had intended to push on to Gobbler's Knob but someone in ou...
We went to Glacier View last weekend and had intended to push on to Gobbler's Knob but someone in our party had to leave early so we came back this weekend. While it was clear blue skies, sunshine, in the upper 40s and no snow around just a week ago, we should have called the ranger station for recent update because the snow level is now about 3000'. we drove 8.4 miles up Forest Road 59, parked at Glacier View trailhead then went right on Puyallup Trail 248 to head towards Gobbler's Knob instead of going left to Glacier View.


While you can reach Gobbler's Knob from the Lake Christine trailhead, I find the directions to turn onto Forest Road 5920 confusing even after driving down the road several times. About Lake Christine: the directions state after turning off highway 706, drive 3.4 miles then stay left at the junction. I would say there are no junctions on the road. There are many spurs off this road, some are just campsites and some are roads. At about 3.4 miles, you pass a road with a campsite next to it but I don't consider it to be a junction. A better way to reach lake Christine trailhead is after turning onto Forest Road 59, drive 4.6 miles then take the sharply angled road on your right. If you are driving upwards, Forest Road 5920 will be at a 45' angle to Forest Road 59 and is easy to miss.


A map is a must for this area. Most of the trail junctions are unsigned. If there is a sign, it will likely tell you what's in 1 direction but not the other. When we were at Glacier View last week, we met a lady there who had wanted to go to Gobbler's Knob but ended up at Glacier View because she didn't have a map. Starting at Glacier View trailhead meant we cut out the initial steepness of Lake Christine trail & shaved about 1.5 miles off our trip which we felt was smart because of the unexpected snow.There was 1-2 inches at the trailhead and 3-5 inches of snow up at the lookout. it was hard to follow the trail in the snow, we got off track twice and had to double back but with map and compass, we hiked on.


We didn't find much information on the Puyallup trail 248 beforehand so I want to be sure to mention you have to cross a creek if you take this route. Instead of trying to balance on wet, snow covered rocks, we went down the creek a short ways and crossed on a wide log with help from our trekking poles. Shortly after this, we had a very nice rest next to goat lake then pushed on for the real work. I haven't hiked in the snow in quite some time and it made the switchbacks up to the lookout all the more fun! It was snowing heavily up & our view was extremely limited but we were glad to have reached our destination!
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Glacier View — Oct 26, 2013 — discohighker
Day hike
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We were exceptionally lucky. Major potholes in the road but otherwise it was an easy but slow drive ...
We were exceptionally lucky. Major potholes in the road but otherwise it was an easy but slow drive up the forest road. Reached the trailhead at 10am. It had been overcast and foggy below, but clear and sunny at glacier view! There was a hiker on the summit who left soon after our arrival. We passed 2 people with a dog who were hiking back from lake Helen on our way out. We had the summit to ourselves for a good hour. It was sunny and clear and beautiful!
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Glacier View — Sep 11, 2013 — CRondorf
Day hike
Features: Wildflowers blooming | Ripe berries
Issues: Bugs | No water source
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The hike was pretty easy. Towards the peak it definitely got harder. Once there though the view is b...
The hike was pretty easy. Towards the peak it definitely got harder. Once there though the view is beyond breathtaking. I felt like I was on top of the world.
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Glacier View — Aug 26, 2013 — Ryan Ojerio
Day hike
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We've got a work party coming up on this Trail on the weekend of Sept. 7,8 Volunteers wanted for Sat...
We've got a work party coming up on this Trail on the weekend of Sept. 7,8 Volunteers wanted for Sat., Sun. or both days.

Last year when we worked on the trail we cleared brush and restored tread about 1 mile in. But we identified a few other spots within the first 1/2 mile that were in bad shape (see picture). If you've been out there this year and have fresh eyes on the project area, give me a call at (360) 722-2657. - Thanks, Ryan

Please join this work party to help restore this trail!
http://vols.wta.org/web/web.pl?sm+20656+ON
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Gobblers Knob, Glacier View — Jul 27, 2013 — dolyn
Overnight
Features: Wildflowers blooming
Issues: Blowdowns | Overgrown | Snow on trail | Bugs
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Overall a fun and not too hard hike that was perfect for our half Seattle, half Portland group- if y...
Overall a fun and not too hard hike that was perfect for our half Seattle, half Portland group- if you can find the trailhead. The forest road to the Christine Lake trailhead was very very rough driving and and not marked at all (aside from a small "59" at the main road) so drive carefully and pay attention to your odometer.

We hit the trail around 12:30PM. We only intended to head to Gobblers Knob and found the trail description to not be a very good match with what we were seeing. We met another group of hikers on the trail and were given the impression that we were headed the wrong direction so we changed direction- it ended up being an excellent mistake!

Instead of heading to Gobblers Knob we headed up the buggy, rocky, steep trail to Glacier View. Wow. Breathtaking panoramic view of Gobblers Knob, Mount Rainier, Mount St. Helens and Mount Adams! Definitely worth the hike!

After plenty of photo taking we headed back down the trail back to the fork which is only labeled by a log with "Summit [arrow to the left]" carved into it. This time we headed, right, away from "Summit" and followed a better maintained trail down into a valley where we came to another fork. There was a sign showing that the "Puyallup Trail" was both left and right. To the left we found Beljica Meadows and to the right (or straight as the trail description says) we found the trail to Goat Lake/Gobblers Knob/George Lake.

This portion of the trail was fairly flat but had more hills as we headed to Goat Lake. Some parts of the trail could use some maintenance. We set up camp at an established campsite on the lake then headed up an unmarked trail. We hiked up and up until we left Forest Service land and hit Mount Rainier National Park and suddenly there are helpful signs and information every 50 yards. Part of the trail on the National Park side of the border has almost completely eroded away so step carefully!

Finally we made it to Gobblers Knob. The view was amazing as well and the lookout at the top is pretty cool.

Overall we had a great time. There were lots of bugs so bring spray if you wish and tiny patches of snow along some parts of the trail from Lake Christine to the main fork but over all the trail was pretty dry.

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Mt Rainier from Glacier View.JPG
Mount Rainier from Glacier View
WTA worked here!
2011, 2012, 2013
Location
Glacier View (#267)
South Cascades
Gifford Pinchot National Forest, Randle Ranger District
Statistics
Roundtrip 4.0 miles
Elevation Gain 900 ft
Highest Point 5450 ft
Features
Wildflowers/Meadows
Mountain views
Summits
Ridges/passes
User info
Good for kids
Guidebooks & Maps
100 Hikes in the South Cascades and Olympics
Day Hike! Mount Rainier
Best Hikes with Kids Western Washington & the Cascades (Burton - Mountaineers Books)
Green Trails Mount Rainier West
No. 269

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Note: the description and driving directions for this Mountaineers Books entry are copyrighted and can't be changed.

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Red MarkerGlacier View
46.7734166667 -121.944566667
  • BCRT 2011
  • Trail Work 2013 Frontcountry
  • Trail Work 2012
(46.7734, -121.9446) Open in new window
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