Mount Pilchuck #700
Mar 23, 1999
- Type of Outing
- Day hike
- Read More in our Hiking Guide
- Hike: Mount Pilchuck
- Region: North Cascades -- Mountain Loop Highway
- Agency: Mount Baker Snoqualmie National Forest - Darrington Ranger District
- Trails: Mount Pilchuck (#700)
- Avg Rating: 4.27
- Be Aware Of
- Snow on trail
Here's the firstest bestest report on the Mt. Pilchuck trail. Please don't believe the Darrington Ranger's report:
Mt. Pilchuck - Distance: 3.0 mi. Status: Open. 12/1/98: Snow covered. Flags: None Report entered: Feb 22, 1999. Written by MBSNF-DRD
I suppose the trail is open, that is if.. you can get to it.
I wasn't actually planning on taking the hike, but wanted to go up to the parking lot to see the views of the north cascades from 3100 feet.
The road has some blowdown and some landslides covering portions of the roadway, but it is passable (down to one lane however). 2 miles up the road I ran into snow, put it into 4WD and assaulted the road. Very bumpy.
Took it down to 4WD low, got bumpier, and icier. I decided that getting to the parking lot was not such a big deal and I found a dry place to K-Turn.
From the tracks I could see that vehicles had gone farther than me, but it appeared to me that it would have been slow going, little reward, and the possiblility of getting stuck. (+ more snow ahead!) The snow is hard and frozen, doesn't give, and once you are into it there is no turning back, only reverse (which in 4WD with ice is no fun). Axle vertical travel was bordering on extreme with some snow bumps as high as one foot on one side and bare road on the other.
Unless you have 4WD, are determined to use it, and a serious death wish to make it to the top, save this trip for another month for the road to thaw a bit more.
If you go, and make it to the parking lot alive, it'll be snow hiking all the way. I'm sure gaiters, an ice axe, all that cold hiking stuff will be required for the next three months at least.