• Activities:

    Photography, Hiking

  • Skill Level:

    Intermediate

  • Season:

    Summer, Autumn

Forest
Scenic

Dayhike to one of the best Alpine Larch forests in Washington. Views of the Eastside of the Glacier Peak Wilderness, including 9,000' Mt. Maude, and 8,500' Buck Mountain. Stunning fall colors of the deciduous Alpine Larch tree with it's golden yellow needles. 8 mile roundtrip hike with 3,500' of elevation gain. Good weather of the dry side of the Cascades when the west side is getting soaked.

Drive USFS Road 62 for 23 miles from Lake Wenatchee (turn left at Cole's Corner off of Highway 2 towards Lake Wenatchee). Turn right on USFS Road 6211 for ~2.5 miles to the end at the Phelps Creek Trailhead.

Begin to hike the Phelps Creek Trail but in 1/4-1/2 a mile, take a right on the Carne Mountain trail, #1508. Ascend the at times steep Carne Mountain trail to a subalpine basin and spend some time exploring. At approximately 3.5 miles, the trail splits. Stay left and continue 3/4 mile to the broad summit of Carne Mountain.

To catch the Larch trees in their autumn splendor, the best time is the first week or two of October. Usually peak color is around October 10th. Bring your camera, especially on a sunny day. The larches glow electric yellow when backlit by the sun.

Pack List

  • Ten essentials
  • Plenty of water - there is a small creek year the top but not dependable after late summer
  • Camera to catch the larches in autumn color
  • Hiking poles for the steep trail
  • Northwest Forest Pass
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Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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Stephen Matera

Stephen is a Seattle-based outdoor adventure, lifestyle, and landscape photographer. He has worked with companies in the outdoor industry for over 15 years as well as some of the biggest national magazines in the adventure world. He travels and shoots for his clients in the western U.S., Alaska, and internationally, but is completely happy to shoot in his backyard mountains in the Pacific Northwest.

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