Hike to the Summit of Granite Mountain
Washington › Pratt Lake Trail
Added by Casey Sullivan
- This hike roundtrip is roughly 9 miles
- Total elevation gain of ~3,800 feet
- A non-technical summit to the fire lookout offering amazing views of the entire Central Washington Cascades
- This is a steep hike with avalanche danger in winter and spring months
The trek up Granite Mountain is a strenuous and fairly steep hike located east of Seattle and west of Snoqualmie pass off of I-90. Take exit 47 and turn North to a T intersection, park at the Pratt lake Trailhead at approximately 1860' and right beside I-90.
The trail splits just after the first mile (1.2 miles exactly), stay left toward Granite Mountain. You climb steeply, switchbacking through avalanche chutes and forested terrain with occasional views across the valley. WARNING: do not attempt when avalanche danger exists above, several fatal accidents have resulted from avalanches here. At about 4,100 feet, you break out of the trees above the avalanche chutes and into meadows; this is where the views get good! The trail meanders up the meadows, which turns into the east summit ridge, and climbs to the summit at 5,629 feet.
- Hiking Boots
- Trekking Poles (optional)
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Spring, Summer, Autumn
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A tough slog, but worth the work
Went up Granite on 5/2/16. Still tons of snow above tree line, maybe in another month it'll have melted out. I got a decent start on the day and was at the trail head at 9:10am. I ran the first 1.2 miles to the split and headed up Granite Mtn Trail (it's to the right). This is where things get a little steep. Hike the endless switch backs up to the meadows (which are currently snow fields) and pause along the stream side turns for some natural A/C and great views to the south. Rainier will peak it's massive head over the southern summits as you make your way up. Once I hit the snow fields, I pretty much just took it straight to the top. I faded East to the bowl on the northern side of the lookout tower and once I hit the final ridge line, stopped to take in the views. They're dope. Everything is pretty badly corniced up there right now, and depending on what time you arrive for your summit push, it might not be worth it. I was up around 10:45 and saw two groups on they're way down-- another soloist passed me on her way to the lookout around 11am. I imagine that was the final attempt on the day. Me...? I decided to save it for later in the season, but the ridge just below the summit offers plenty for you to soak in. Go early, and take gaiters and poles if you attempt in early May. The view is awesome and the snow is totally manageable.
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