OverviewDifficulty: Mostly Class 2 with an Easy Class 3 section at the summit.
Distance: Round trip - Several miles (Could easily be done in a day).
Elevation Gain: Moderate.
Discovery Peak is a very obscure and seldom climbed peak although worthy of the energy it takes to climb it. From the top you can see views of Mt. Hoquiam and the Olympics, although our view was clouded out by the typical overcast weather in Washington. At the base of the mountain sits a lake, aptly named Discovery Lake. Surrounding Discovery Lake is a meadow that is very suitable for camping. It has been 10+ years since I climbed this peak but at the time that I climbed it there was a little firepit by the lake. Although this peak could be done in one day, camping by the lake is well worth it. Another side trip that might want to be taken on the way to the summit is an old abandoned mine. Although if you choose to explore it, than ENTER AT YOUR OWN RISK. Unfortunately I do not have exact directions to the mine but it is not too far off the beaten path if I remember correctly. There is very little information to be found about this peak so I thought I would add this page to inform more people about it.
Getting ThereFrom Interstate 5 take Exit 104 (near Olympia) to Highway 101 north. Stay on Highway 101 for 5 1/2 miles; the road then bears left and becomes Highway 8 west toward Aberdeen. Highway 8 will become Highway 12. One mile west of Montesano, exit at Devonshire Road and Wynoochee Lake Recreation Area. At the stop sign at the end of the exit ramp, go straight (north) on Wynoochee Valley Road. Drive approximately 36 miles north. The last 17 miles are gravel (Forest Service Road #22). At this point you will be at a junction between of roads 2270 and 400. You will want to follow Road #400 as far as it is open.
Proceed to the trail start (Trail #874 to Wynoochee Pass), then follow the switchback road left for about 1/4 mile to the second switchback, from this point, either climb northerly straight up the mountainside or continue on the road another 1/2 mile to its end near the NE ridge. Climb the ridge then follow it SW to the meadows below the summit and a junction with the other route. Of these two, the first route is more direct, although the second route is a little easier. From the meadows near Discovery Lake Climb to the summit. From the meadows there is a partial trail that will lead you up the mountain. It is a bit of a scramble in some spots, but nothing worse than a class 3, if that.
Red TapeThere are no permits required and no use fees. No parking pass is needed but part of the road that leads to the trailhead is washed out, so one must hike from the washout to the trailhead.
When To ClimbThis peak is most easily climbed during the late spring - mid fall. Although, in snowy conditions I would recommend a 4WD to reach the washout and Ice axe, crampons and snowshoes for the climb.
Camping and recreationCamping is available at the base of the mountain at Discovery Lake and it is quite serene. No Fees. There is also camping at nearby Wynochee Lake and there are fees there however.
Here is more information about camping at Wynochee Lake:
Olympic National Forest
Hood Canal Ranger District
P.O. Box 68
Hoodsport, WA 98548
Phone Number: 1-(360)-877-5254
Nearby Weather Conditions
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2skinners Other Mountain PagesFeel free to check out my other mountain pages.
DELAWARE MOUNTAINS (HIGHPOINT):
Crater Lake Caldera
Lower Table Rock
Upper Table Rock