Mt. Pugh Trail

Page Type
Washington, United States, North America
Route Type:
Trail and Scramble
Time Required:
Half a day
Class 3

Route Quality: 3 Votes

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Page By:
Mt. Pugh Trail
Created On: Feb 12, 2005
Last Edited On: May 21, 2005


To get to the trailhead, see the Getting There section on the main page.
You can also approach the turn off to FR-2095 from Barlow Pass but the Mountain Loop Highway is currently washed out from that direction. No timetable has been set for repairing that road. There are actually multiple washouts.

Route Description

The majority of this route follows a trail or bootpath. Some scrambling is required but it shouldn't be too difficult (snow-cover will change all this).

Trailhead elevation is ~1,920 ft.

Follow the well-worn trail for 1.5 miles to tiny and uninspiring Lake Metan (3,180 ft). This first stretch to the lake is mostly traversing. The trail then goes around the north side of the lake and climbs, in several switchbacks, the steep forested slopes NE of the lake. Finally, at about 4,900 ft, the trail breaks out into the open basin below Stujack Pass. The trail then wanders upward mostly on the left side of the basin to the 5,700-ft pass, reaching it in about 4.5 miles from the car. Here is where the going becomes less trail and more bootpath and scrambling.

The trail climbs leftward out of the pass notch on heathery slopes then contours the east side of the ridge. There is a rocky scramble where the path takes to the crest, passing over it then onto the west side for a short stretch to the prominent notch of the Straight Creek Fault. This notch is the apex of a long, icy snow finger (the fault).

The crux of the scramble is next. On the southeast side of the notch the route climbs up through a 30-ft chimney. Footholds (steps) have been cut into the rock where needed, making it nothing more than a steep Class 3 scramble. Once above the crux the going gets easier and a trail reforms.

Take the trail up through several rock outcrops. Some minor scrambling through breaks should be expected.

Time = 3-5 hours up, 2-3 hours down; Gain = 5,300 ft; Distance = ~5.5 miles.

Essential Gear

Ice axe if snowy or early season.

Miscellaneous Info

If you have information about this route that doesn't pertain to any of the other sections, please add it here.