Jul 21, 2012
- Type of Outing
- Read More in our Hiking Guide
- Hike: Goat Mountain
- Region: South Cascades -- Mt. St. Helens
- Agency: Gifford Pinchot National Forest - Mount St. Helens National Monument
- Trails: Goat Mountain (#217)
- Avg Rating: 3.17
- Hiking Companions
- Hiked with kids
- Hiked with a dog
- Why You Should Go Now
- Wildflowers blooming
- Be Aware Of
First 2.5 miles of trail, as described elsewhere, are pretty steep and painful. The first bit (mile?) of trail is rutted and gravelly, which makes the going particularly hard on the way down, after the legs are already tired from the previous portions of the steep descent. After that, the trail conditions improve -- to fairly nice forest dirt.
The highlight of the trail is the ridge, which has spectacular views of four mountains, and wildflowers right now that made us want to yodel. Beargrass, columbine, lupine, indian paintbrush, tiger lily with as many as 15 flowers on a single stalk, ... and more.
Mosquitos were oppressive, and didn't seem to be significantly slowed down by our applications of "skin so soft" OR REI's "Jungle Juice" 99% DEET. We didn't stop as much as we would have liked on the trail, and decided to hunker in the tent for the evening rather than make a hot dinner.
The lake itself was pleasant, very warm and shallow. We didn't go in because we couldn't bear the thought of stripping down enough for it (bugs) and because we would have felt guilty about washing all our DEET into it. No spectacular views from the lake, and no rocks for jumping in, either -- just forest and a few sandy beaches.
Later, when the stars came out, the bugs went away, through they were back when it warmed up in the morning.