Nice little hike. Growing up in Portland I had always seen the mountain in the distance and wanted to see what is was like up there, so I finally had to check it out. Didn't get the spectacular views of the surrounding volcanoes because of cloud cover. Lots of wildflowers. To many logging roads and clearcuts visible for my liking, but the view to the east off the backside of Little Baldy was nice. Shared the begining section of the trail with an inmate work crew as the sound of sporatic gunfire echoed through the hills. At least I had the summit to myself when I arrived.
Hiked this with my dad. He's a bit of a wildflower fanatic, so we were both pretty happy, I scouted out the volcanoes, he puttered among the plants. We went up a road and down a trail. The Indian pits are very cool to see, great spot for a vision quest. Has anyone tried rock climbing on sturgeon rock? It is of passing quality. This hike has a very good view/effort quotiont.
My 4 year old son and I started up at Grouse Creek Vista in the late morning on a sunny day. I had to rent a child carrier for the few steep sections. He was thrilled when we arrived to the summit, and he hiked about 2 of the 4 hours round trip. He slept in the carrier the last 30 minutes on the way down. As this is a short approach, my son and I have yet to challenge the easier, longer trails to the summit, maybe next summer. After all, this is his first mountain summit.
11/29/02 Started out kinda cloudy and cold but cleared up once I got to the Indian pits. Was very cool area. I hunkered down in one as it got really windy but figured that was not too respectful and left pretty quickly after a few photos. Awesome views. Hit the summit and talked to a few people there who hiked in from the north. On the return trip I scrambled up Sturgeon Rock and then back the Tarbell Trail. No real views of the waterfall though. Beautiful day and great areas. There appear to be tons of trail linking this with other mountains to the north.
March 4, 2006 - With Natasha and Anette. Saw the goat! Lots of snow. Great sunny day.
May 9, 2009 - With Luna. Great views, lots of snow still.
June 6, 2010 - With Luna. Socked in and drizzling all day. Snow still above around 3600-3800 feet. Up in 1 hr 40 mins, down in 1 hr 15 mins. Moist, very most.
5/13/12 - With Luna. Snow from about 3500 feet on up, about 5 feet in places. Fun day though.
6/3/12 - With Grover and Luna. Grover's first summit. Went up South Ridge Route from about 1600 feet. Old abandoned road in decent shape. Basically this is the next ridge east from the normal route. Went up trail to the one that goes on the backside of Pyramid Rock and hit the summit of the mound to the south of it. Then back and up the steep slopes below point 4010 where the Indian pits are. Dogs loved it, they romped all day. Good and tired when we got back home. Suggestion though, do this route before mid-June or the shrubs and trees are going to make a lot of the trail a struggle.
6/20/12 Dogs and Denyers via South Ridge Old Road.
7/15/12 Solo via Starway Trail.
11/25/12 Back with the dogs, snow already from about 3500 feet up. Lots of people on the main summit as it turned out to be a sunny nice day (was predicted to be rainy) so we hit the sub-summit and then bushwhacked our way down to the South Ridge Trail. Thought it was post-hunting season but lots of gunfire on the way down so put the dogs on leash. They were tired and sacked out into the next day.
Spring 2013 - 2 or 3 times with the dogs, decided not to take them this way anymore due to too much redneck factor with people shooting guns nearby.
7/7/13 - With Luna, finally did Ed's Trail up and the Silver Star Trail back down. Not sure why I've never done this route until now, maybe I thought it was too short or not enough elevation gain but easily the most bang for your buck on Ed's Trail. The scenery is amazing and July is perfect to catch the rainbow of flowers on display. Crapass road to get there and I was about to say passenger vehicles can't do it but there were a couple at the completely full and overflowing parking area. (Did see a Prius bit the dust on the side of the road. I would not recommend anything but high clearance vehicles drive this shitty road.) Scrambly near the arch, be careful with dogs. But what an amazing scenic route.
9/18/15 With Luna and Flanders up Ed's Trail.
2/10/18 With Jim and Luna up the South Ridge on a blue sky day.
4/22/18 with Diane - spectacularly clear blue sky day with visibility from Rainier to the Three Sisters.