Hiked up the crazy switchbacks totally thinking it was the peak to the south of us... until we hit the pass and saw how much further it was. Beautiful area. Got lots of pictures of Rainier and Goat Rocks. Did see a couple mountain goats from the top too.
But did summit the mountain SSW at about elevation 7350 feet. A clear day, but wildfires in the area obscured the views somewhat with haze. All in all, did about a total of 4000 ft elevation gain (in and out) on the Mt. Aix Trail.
Hiked the standard route and then scrambled up the west side. This is really not even really much of a scramble, class two and basically a bootpath walk-up but there is one section where the talus is extremely loose. Good views all around and this is a nice choice when clouds to the west portend precipitation.
Spectacular weather, spectacular views, fun companions, a good 12+ mile hike and a 400' scramble (class 3 I'm told, though I'm new to scramble ratings) - - what's not to like?!
Very warm day, great view of Rainier. Don't remember much else about it.
A great fall hike and I hit it on an outstanding day. Somewhat hazy however but the view of Mt. Rainier was outstanding. Mt. Aix is the site of a former lookout and nails and cable still litter the area as well as some wood on the north side.
I went up the back (east side) class 2 route and down the west side class 3 route and wished I had done that route both ways. It saves close to a mile to just scramble right up the west side but a trip report I was using recommending doing a sidehill traverse and then going up the east side. A very prominent use trail is there and was once the way the lookout was approached. A benchmark and a witness one are present and the register is a white plastic tube that has just scraps of paper in it. Normally I carry a little notebook for just such occasions but not today as it was in my other pack. I met up with SP'er Tazz and NWHiker.net members Brad on the summit and Denise just below it and hiked down with them.
I got nailed by some angry bees on the way in and 3 of them scored hits. Two mountains goats were north of Mt. Aix and I also met 4 other hikers near the summit but they were the only ones besides my group that I saw all day. I'd like to go back and get Nelson peak and perhaps Mt Aix again someday. It is one that I'd be willing to repeat.
We just had to get out of the north central Cascades. It's a three hour drive to the trailhead, which we did friday night. Got moving at first light, which is later than it used to be. The trail has a short warm-up section and then takes aim at the sky. After two miles the grade relents. There are plenty of water trickles along the way, but they may be dry after a normal winter. More forest, including some of the biggest pines I've ever seen east of the crest. Big Tahoma appears so close, you can count the crevasses. Up, up, finally reaching timberline at a gap on Nelson Ridge. Contour right and drop a disheartening 250' down the ridge. The trail goes up, and starts sidehilling across Mt Aix. Look for a small cairn, and scramble (class 3) up 400' to the summit. Wow!! This easily ranks top five hikes this year! From the sight of the former lookout the view left me slack-jawed. How about Rainier, Adams, St. Helens, the Goat Rocks, Tatoosh, and even a faint Baker. The barrens extend in all directions, peaks high yellow, red and white, basins still green. Throw in the five mountain goats we saw, add clear skies, finish with the summit to ourselves, and this is why we do what we do. Put this one on your short list! When we left the top we went down the old lookout trail. It joins the Nelson ridge trail on the south side of Mt Aix, at a big arrow marker on the trail. This descent was only class 2. Approximate statistics: 13 miles R/T (including side trips), 4500' elev. gain, 3 1/2 hours up, 3 hours down (sidetrips!) TEN STAR RATING!!!
It was so hot and dry! This was the year we had record droughts and there were campfire bans. I went with Darren, Alainna & Steve-o. We camped further down the dirt road (which was extremely rough on my little Saturn sedan). Awesome views of Mt Rainier although my most vivid memory is the taste of of dirt in my mouth. Ha ha. Even though Aix was painful at times, we had a TON of fun.
Spectacular weather made for a magnificent hike. The views of Rainier, Adams, St. Helens, the Goat Rocks, the Tatoosh Range, the Stuart Range and Alpine Lakes peaks couldn't have been better. I'm rehabbing a torn quad, and this was a great test with 4000+ feet of EG and a summit scramble during which I had to baby the leg several times. Highly recommended early season hike, but I wouldn't want to do it much later than now because it will become brutally hot later if you have good views. I carried 4+ liters of water and still had to ration it even though it wasn't too hot. Some small streams are still flowing, so you may prefer to bring a filter, but I don't know how long those streams will run. There was still some side-hilling snow to deal with, but I left the axe on my pack and negotiated the snow with only my trekking poles.
I climbed Aix with my dad some time in the summer of 1987. We didn't have great views due to an incoming weather system. It is an oft forgotten big boy of the Southern Washington Cascades.
6/12/04-Left from Portland at 4:45 am Arrived trailhead about 8:45 am. Finally started about 9:15 and made 2000 feet in 1 hr 15 minutes. Nice and steep trail. Broke into the open alpine forest and rocks about 11 or so. Lost the trail in the snow and got into a talus field. Worked my way up to the ridge and caught the Nelson Ridge trail along the ridge. Met up with the real trail further south and was an easy hike with great views over to the summit pinnacle.
Decided to go around the back side (east) which was the wrong thing to do. It's a lot longer and due to postholing in snow, I ended up climbing around gendarmes (maybe Class 3 to not-too-exposed 4). Weaved in and out of them to the summit. Nice and sunny up until I summitted. Then, the clouds that had been held back by the Cascade crest relented and they worked their way over to make it an overcast afternoon but no rain.
In retrospect, I should have brought crampons and no axe to make for faster travelling. Snow was nice and consolidated in the morning but mush by mid-afternoon. Great day climbing though. Good workout.
5/30/16 With Ron and Luna the Trailpup. Started up around 9 am. lots more blowdown and slide areas where the trail has degenerated. Ran into the same issues with snow but this time instead of climbing snow, we went straight up the talus and popped out on top of Nelson Ridge's summit. Then down the ridge and easy over to Aix's summit. On the way back, we went up and over Point 7438 (or something like that). Ended up being a very long day with probably at least 5000 ft of gain. Long drive back to Portland, getting home after 11 pm. Beautiful sunny day though with stellar views all around.