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North Fork Loop

South Cascades > White Pass/Cowlitz River Valley
46.4534, -121.7868 Map & Directions
Length
2.0 miles, roundtrip
Elevation Gain
400 feet
Highest Point
1800 feet
Calculated Difficulty About Calculated Difficulty
Easy
Photo by Strangatang. Full-size image
  • Wildlife
  • Established campsites
  • Old growth
  • Good for kids
  • Dogs allowed on leash
  • Fall foliage
  • Rivers

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

Northwest Forest Pass

Visitors to the North Fork Loop Trail will see several different forests and enjoy views of the lush Cispus Valley. The trail is adjacent to the North Fork of the Cispus River, and departs from the North Fork campground, making it a great option for people staying there. Continue reading

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Hiking North Fork Loop

Visitors to the North Fork Loop Trail will see several different forests and enjoy views of the lush Cispus Valley. The trail is adjacent to the North Fork of the Cispus River, and departs from the North Fork campground, making it a great option for people staying there.

The trail begins in the North Fork Campground, which is open between May and September. Near the start of your trail is a guard station, built by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) in 1937.  Proceed 0.3 miles with 400 feet of elevation gain to access the loop itself.

This section is the steepest of the trail; once you reach the loop, the trail flattens out and travels counterclockwise. The southern section of the loop follows the bluff overlooking the Cispus River Valley, weaving among Douglas-firs and Hemlock with maple and dogwood in abundance. Most of the big trees are the remnants spared from logging in the 1960s and are beginning to close canopy producing a cool dark interior with sparse understory.

It is possible to extend this hike by adding on a jaunt down the River Trail at the base of the lollipop route.

Hike Description Written by
Multiple authors contributed to this report, WTA Community

North Fork Loop

Map & Directions

Trailhead
Co-ordinates: 46.4534, -121.7868 Open in Google Maps

Before You Go

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Parking Pass/Entry Fee

Northwest Forest Pass

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 Randle, drive south on State Highway 131 (Forest Roads 23 and 25). Hang a left in 1 mile at the Y of Forest Road 23 and Forest Road 25. Continue to follow Forest Road 23 for 10.6 miles to arrive at the group sites on your left and 10.8 miles to arrive at the main campground on your left. The trail is in the back of North Fork Campground by the Guard Station.

More Hike Details

Trailhead

South Cascades > White Pass/Cowlitz River Valley

North Fork (#122)

Gifford Pinchot National Forest, Cowlitz Valley Ranger District

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North Fork Loop

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