Trico Mountain is an easy scramble in the beautiful Alpine Lakes Wilderness. It is located on the same Wenatchee Mountain ridge as Granite Mountain, and both peaks are often climbed in a day. The most common route to the top starts at the Robin Lakes which are great hiking destinations themselves. Views from the summit are fantastic, including neighboring Mt. Daniel, Mt. Stuart, and several of the cascade volcanos. The mountain's name comes from the fact that it is located on the boundary line of three counties (King, Chelan, and Kittitas).
The shortest route to the Robin Lakes area begins at the Tacquala Meadows Campground and trailhead at the end of FS4330. From I-90, drive east of Snoqualmie Pass and take exit 80. Drive north through Roslyn and Salmon la Sac. When the pavement ends and the road forks, take the right-hand direction towards Tacquala Meadows. Drive this road to where it ends (about another 12 miles) which is the Hyas Lake/Deception Pass trailhead.
Start on the Deception Pass trail (#1376) at elevation 3550 feet. The first couple of miles on this trail are very easy and scenic, passing Hyas Lake with great views of Cathedral Rock. At the end of the lake, the trail begins to climb towards Deception Pass. At 4.5 miles (0.6 miles before Deception Pass), take the well-marked side trail off to the right which heads to Tuck and Robin Lakes. This is where the trail gets slightly more vertical! The views get better as this trail climbs up rocky outcroppings with great views of Mt. Daniel and down to Hyas Lake. After about 1.5 miles on this trail you arrive at Tuck Lake, a great snack spot with camping available.
To get to the Robin Lakes basin from Tuck Lake, follow the south side of Tuck Lake and cross the outlet creek. From here follow the cairns along the ridge up the granite slabs to the mountainside above the lake. The Robin Lakes are approx. 900 feet above Tuck Lake in an obvious basin. The trail hits Lower Robin Lake first, with Upper Robin Lake to the east. There are many possible camping spots here as well as higher on the ridge above the lakes. This is a very popular backpacking destination so please do not make any new campsites or trails.
The easiest route to Trico Mountain leaves from the west side of Upper Robin Lake. Follow the trail around the lake, gradually gaining the ridge and heading north. Continue along the ridge, passing the Granite Mountain Potholes below you to the east. The easy-to-follow path continues up the ridge, approaching the summit from the west side. When the trail comes out on the summit ridge, turn right for 100 feet to reach the summit. It is also possible to turn left here and walk along the summit ridge for more good views.
A wilderness permit is required - this can be self-issued at the trailhead. A Northwest Trail pass is required to park at the trailhead - this can be purchased for $5/day or an annual pass for $30.
When To Climb
This peak is best climbed from June to October when access to the Robin Lakes is easiest.
There are many campgrounds along the road to Tacquala Meadows. Along the trail, campsites exist at popular Hyas Lake, Tuck Lake, and Robin Lakes. There are also many possible camp locations near the trail from Robin Lakes to Trico Mountain.
Trail conditions and closure info are available from the Wenatchee National Forest information page.