Gabe O'Leary

This was my first 50k distance in a day, a manageable distance if you are fit and have done up to 20 miles in a day with no problem. I didn't find the trail to be overly difficult as it is well marked and doesn't have a TON of up and down. We were lucky to have a partly overcast day which meant we didn't overheat or have to drink too much water. The landscape is otherworldly and reminded me of Iceland in places.

I took my family including my 79 year old God Father here for a day hike. I wanted to take them up close to Mount Rainier so Sunrise seemed like a natural choice. We did the Sunrise Rim Trail and added on a spur to the second Burroughs. We didn't make it to the Third which I've heard has awesome views down onto the Glacier because my God Father was struggling a bit in the heat. Will have to return and do that another day. It wasn't terribly crowded on the Saturday of Labor day which was somewhat surprising.

What an awesome area so close to Seattle. I would offer a word of caution to anyone attempting to return to their car via the alternate route described (over Dip Top Gap & past Mount Daniel). From Jade Lake to Peggys Pond/Cathedral is all off trail and requires serious navigation, scrambling and open country travel skills. I would not attempt to return this way unless you have a GPS and have a good idea of where you are going. I'm surprised the idea is not further described above as it is not for the faint of heart (but an awesome route if you have the skills for it).

If you are headed to Gothic Basin I highly recommend you tack on this climb of Del Campo, You have already gained most of the elevation by the time you get to the basin after all... I did a day hike that included traversing Gothic Peak and Summiting Del Campo afterwards. Nice to do later in the summer once the lake is melted out and you can go for a (cold) swim. This page could use some more info but I guess it's all there on the summitpost page...

Nice views but it is a super crowded area, so unless you are going early summer when there is still snow or in the fall expect there to be LOTS of people day hiking & camping overnight. I recommend you combine this hike with scrambles of both Gothic & Del Campo peaks surrounding the basin.

Go when it's going to be a hot and the swimming will be well worth it. There is great camping on the far side of the lake if you make the effort to get over there. The hike up to Klahhane ridge is spectacular and worth the steep hike. You can make it a 12 mile loop if you continue past Mount Angeles and Heather Park - there is also good camping here if you want to turn it into a 2 night trip.

While this area does get crowded on the weekend it is one of my favorite spots to go before or after work on a week day. The trail head is just off the highway (read easily accessible) and it's a manageable distance for a quick jaunt (if you move fast). The views are awesome, and the trail is well maintained, although I usually take the shortcut on the Commonwealth Basin trail. Best to have a GPS (app) if you take this route. I also highly recommend the Scramble route to the summit that is accessed by continuing to follow the PCT past the (boring) bootpath to the summit. I would say it goes at class 3 maybe 4 if you choose the more interesting variations and try to stay on the ridge the whole time(if it gets too difficult on the ridge just move to one side or the other to easier terrain until you can regain the ridge). Pretty solid rock and not that spicy.

We spent one night camped out and Climbed Ingalls peak. What an awesome setting with Mount Stuart looming overhead. There is a ton of scrambling in the area, Fortune Peak, South Ingalls & Not Hinkhouse can all be scrambled with no rope or if you are a climber you can climb the South or East Ridge of Ingalls Peak.

We camped high on Daniel and got 4k feet of skiing in, in July! There is a spot you can bivy 200ft below the east peak and 2 people were even bivied on the Summit of the east peak. Wouldn't want to be up there on a windy day though...

The trail is no-nonsense, it starts climbing steeply from the parking lot. This also means you won't waste any time getting up high.

If you are short on time it's the best way to spend it in the area. Like some of the other ridge hikes (Honopu, Nu'alolo, Awa'awapuhi) but shorter and less publicized so more secluded.

The Mountain Loop Highway is closed 12 miles from Verlot (because of snow etc) which is 7 miles from the mentioned trail-head. That turns this 9 mile hike into a 23 mile hike. I'm surprised there is no mention of the seasonality of this road in the description as the road is closed every year. I imagine that this time of year (with the quantity of snow we have received) that snowshoes would be required as well. In addition I would think it would be appropriate to mention that there is potential for avalanche danger on this route and people should check with the NWAC forecast/predictions prior to setting off into such an area.

My brother and I spent 2 nights camped at the Robson Pass campground (the last along the berg lake trail). The scenery on the hike is was absolutely stunning. We also hiked up to snowbird pass on the back side of Mount Robson which afforded us amazing views of the Robson Glacier. I would highly recommend this trip to anyone willing and capable to put forth the effort. It was a hell of a trek (~40 miles in 3 days) but it was well worth it. The weather didn't really cooperate with us the last 2 days and we hiked the 14 miles out in about 4 hours but I would like to go back (and perhaps attempt Mount Robson's summit).