Sauk Mountain Summit 5,541'

Skagit County, Washington

4.3/5
based on 6 reviews

Details

Distance

4 miles

Elevation Gain

1200 ft

Route Type

Out-and-Back

Description

Added by Beau Ramsey

Side hike to an alpine lake. Amazing 360 degree views. Beautiful wildflowers in spring. Great hike to get a friend into hiking in the outdoors.

Even from the Trailhead, the views overlooking the Skagit River valley, all the way out toward Mount Vernon, are outstanding. The trail follows 20 tight switchbacks as it makes it's way 600 feet up to the southern crest of the summit ridge. This is a steep slope and it's possible to look straight down and see all the zigzags below you. In the spring the wildflowers are the best around along this steep slope. Once you reach the ridge crest and turn the corner, all the views to the east will open up. There are endless North Cascade Peaks to view from here. The trail now turns north and eventually northwest as it follows the east side of the summit ridge. You will pass a trail junction with a trail leading down to Sauk Lake. Follow the rocky path up until you reach the lookout site. It may be steep, loose and rough at the end. If you go on the weekend, expect there to be many hikers on the trail. The old lookout does not remain on the summit, it was burned down in 1991.

Directions:
From I-5 exit in Burlington north of Mount Vernon on Highway 20. Follow 20 east for 36 miles and turn left of Sauk Mountain Road also know as RD 1030. If you pass through Rockport and the gas station, you have gone too far. Follow Sauk road (steep gravel road) up for 7.2 miles until the parking lot which has an outhouse just a short walk up the trail.

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Features

Fitness
Photography
Running
Swimming
Snowshoeing
Hiking
Bathrooms
Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Forest
Lake
Scenic
Wildflowers
Wildlife

Reviews

This will always be a favorite, for many reasons. The views are insanely gorgeous for it being such a short hike. There is different terrain everywhere you look! *While it is a beginner hike, make sure to take careful steps around loose rocks near the switchbacks as it would be a long fall down otherwise it is incredible and very doable for a beginner.

Wildflowers are exploding on the mountain at this time of the year (July) and it was quite a sight to see. A great sunrise hike due to the low milage, but the somewhat rough long road to the trailhead helps you gain that elevation you need for stunning views.

One of my favorite short day hikes near Marblemount. Views of the Puget Sound and surrounding peaks are well worth the switchbacks! Good workout and would be fantastic for a run before sunrise.

Although this hike gains elevation quickly, the many switchbacks make it manageable. Even with cloudy skies that obstructed the views at the summit, the hike (and drive up) were worth it! *Side note: avoid taking the "shortcuts" that others have worn in to the trail. They really only save you a few seconds at most and are causing erosion.

This is an awesome hike! We did this hike on 6/29/16 and there was still a large amount of snow that needed to be crossed near the top, but it should be gone soon. The hike is steep, but completely manageable. It's almost harder on the way down, so I would recommend bringing your hiking poles.

I hiked Sauk Mountain yesterday morning (June 20th, 2016) for the first time and loved it! The switchbacks take you quickly up to the summit. There was one patch of snow to cross on the back side of the mountain to get to the true summit. I'd recommend boots/microspikes and poles for a couple more weeks! Stunning views!

Leave No Trace

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

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