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Smooth Ridge

Eastern Washington > Palouse and Blue Mountains
46.1129, -117.7455 Map & Directions
9.4 miles, roundtrip
Elevation Gain
2,540 feet
Highest Point
6,529 feet
Calculated Difficulty About Calculated Difficulty
Prarie smoke along Smooth Ridge. Photo by Holly Weiler. Full-size image
  • Mountain views
  • Dogs allowed on leash
  • Rivers
  • Ridges/passes

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

Northwest Forest Pass
Saved to My Backpack

Smooth Ridge offers incredible views into the rugged heart of the Wenaha-Tucannon Wilderness. Continue reading

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Hiking Smooth Ridge

Smooth Ridge offers incredible views into the rugged heart of the Wenaha-Tucannon Wilderness.

From the Teepee trailhead, step onto the Mount Misery Trail. After a mile, the main horsegraded trail heads downhill while the original, but less used, routing of the Mount Misery trail heads uphill to your right. The foot path goes over the top of West Butte at 6,259 feet and rejoins the main trail 1.7 miles from the trailhead.

After two miles of hiking, refill your bottle at the Oregon Butte Spring water trough and come to a large switchback 700 feet later. Just after the switchback take the Smooth Ridge trail to your left through a stand of trees and over the crest of the hill. The main trail goes to the Oregon Butte fire lookout. You’ll be able to see the Smooth Ridge trail downhill to your left if you miss the junction and find yourself walking along the ridge top toward the fire lookout.

Follow the Smooth Ridge Trail downhill around the flank of Oregon Butte for 1.9 miles to Danger Point, enjoying views along the steep, exposed ridgeline. Grab some shade and quench your thirst by continuing down the Smooth Ridge trail another 0.6 miles to McBain Spring which offers some of the coldest, best tasting water you’ll find in the Blue Mountains.

For the adventurous, Smooth Ridge continues all the way to the Wenaha River in Oregon and is arguably the most scenic long trail in the Wenaha-Tucannon Wilderness.

WTA Pro Tip: The Kendall skyline road has abundant dispersed car camping opportunities with amazing views. Fill your water jugs at Moolack Spring on the side of the road about a mile from Teepee trailhead on Forest Road 4608 as camps are generally dry.

Hike Description Written by
Kyle Pomraning, WTA Correspondent

Smooth Ridge

Map & Directions

Co-ordinates: 46.1129, -117.7455 Open in Google Maps

Before You Go

See weather forecast

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 Dayton, head southeast for 21 miles on North Touchet River Road (becomes Forest Road 64) following signs for Bluewood Ski Area. Stay right at the ski area gate and drive uphill 2.8 miles. Take a left onto Kendall Skyline Road (FR 46) and go 10.2 miles to a sharp right onto FR 4608 for just after Godman Campground.

Follow FR 4608 for 5 miles to Teepee trailhead. Stay right at the unsigned three-way fork 3.5 miles in. A privy and primitive campsites are available at the trailhead.

More Hike Details


Eastern Washington > Palouse and Blue Mountains

Smooth Ridge (#3105)

Umatilla National Forest, Pomeroy Ranger District

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Smooth Ridge

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