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Anacortes Community Forest Lands - Mount Erie

Puget Sound and Islands > Whidbey Island
48.4690, -122.6294 Map & Directions
5.0 miles, roundtrip
Elevation Gain
1,000 feet
Highest Point
1,300 feet
Calculated Difficulty About Calculated Difficulty

At 1300 feet, Mount Erie marks the high point of Fidalgo Island. While it's accessible via a road, the hike up to the summit is heart-pounding, and makes an excellent outing for the day, or just a few hours. Continue reading

  • Mountain views
  • Wildlife
  • Dogs allowed on leash
  • Summits
  • Lakes
  • Coast

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

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Hiking Anacortes Community Forest Lands - Mount Erie

Though it’s accessible via road, Mount Erie also has a trail to its summit, and is a great destination for a day hike. You can visit it in conjunction with Sugarloaf or Whistle Lake, two popular locations in the Anacortes Community Forest Lands, or approach it from another trail. This description is via Sugarloaf, but maps of the area, available at the City Hall in Anacortes, as well as the bookstore, the two bike shops in town, and the Mount Erie grocer, are great for creating your own way to access Erie.

From Sugarloaf’s viewpoint, head down Trail 238 and shortly arrive at a wooden gate. Turn right onto Trail 226, which descends sharply—300 feet in about a third of a mile. Stay on Trail 226 until you arrive at a “T” intersection. Turn right again, taking up Trail 230. 230 is wide and ambles along a valley floor through open forest before ascending to a junction with Trail 207. Turn right onto Trail 207, which climbs again for about a third of a mile to a junction with Trail 26. Though Trail 26 has a traverse that may look tempting after so much up and down, you’ve still got nearly a mile to go, so proceed straight on to Trail 216. Keep climbing and climbing. You’ll glimpse the road after about half a mile; from there it’s just about another half mile to the summit, which you reach by climbing up and over a large boulder, where spread at your feet is…the parking lot.

Fortunately, the viewpoints from Erie are just across the lot. There are several options for your view, but the best are to be found by heading towards the antennae, then taking the trail around to the left of the fence. The viewpoint here includes a sign that names the landmarks you can see below—a much more satisfying summit view than the parking lot behind you.

Note that there are privies at the top, as well as wastebaskets and recycling bins. Please be sure to pitch any trash you may have in these. Signs at the summit also request that hikers be very aware that rock climbers use Erie for their recreation as well, so please be sure to not drop anything over the viewpoints!

The most straightforward way back to the trailhead is via the road, which includes two opportunities to hop back onto trails and make your way back down. A junction three-quarters of a mile from the summit is marked with a large sign as Nettle Loop or the Mount Erie Summit Trail, and another .1 miles from that is a junction marked for the Sugarloaf summit trail. Be aware that if you do decide to head all the way down via the road that people are driving to the summit, so share the road.

Hike Description Written by
Anna Roth, WTA Staff

Anacortes Community Forest Lands - Mount Erie

Map & Directions

Co-ordinates: 48.4690, -122.6294 Open in Google Maps

Before You Go

The lower portion of the Sunrise/East Buttress Trail Trail 247 and the Pigeon Stool Wall have been closed to the public as portions of them are on private land

See weather forecast

Parking Pass/Entry Fee


WTA Pro Tip: Save a copy of our directions before you leave! App-based driving directions aren't always accurate and data connections may be unreliable as you drive to the trailhead.

Getting There

From I-5, take Exit 230 for Highway 20 and head west for 10 miles, then turn left to stay on Highway 20. Staying straight on the Highway 20 Spur takes you into the city of Anacortes.

Turn right onto Campbell Lake Road and drive about one and a half miles along the lake. Turn right onto Heart Lake Road--note that the sign for this turn can be hard to read, so look for the Mount Erie Grocery and take the road to the right of the store.

Less than a mile from the grocery store, turn right into the gravel parking lot. There is room for about 25 cars.

More Hike Details


Puget Sound and Islands > Whidbey Island

Anacortes City Parks

Guidebooks & Maps

See Whistle Lake Area pdf:

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Anacortes Community Forest Lands - Mount Erie

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