Mileage: 6+ miles RT but feels longer due to trail unmaintained.
Elevation Gain/Highest: Seriously depends! “TH” is at about 2700ft. There are three summits, some say highest possible summit is 5070.
Map: Green Trails Skykomish No. 175 (trail isn’t shown)
Favorite Eats After Hike: Wallace Falls Café
11/11/2016 I have done the new Beckler Peak Trail multiple times since 2011, including a snowshoe in April and have always wanted to visit the middle peaks. In March, I went to snowshoe Beckler and snow on the road stopped me short of the TH. As I was walking up the road, I saw an old trail up to the left. I remembered that just a few days before a hiking friend had told me about an old trail to Beckler. Guessing that was it, I did a short snowshoe up to about 4200ft but stopped because the trail leaves the old road and becomes harder to follow, especially not having taken that route before. Today I went back to hike it without snow so I would be more familiar and to check out the location of the old lookout. There isn’t a lot of consistent intel for this trail (it’s not on the map) and I don’t carry a GPS, so the stats above are based on Green Trails and what I could glean from the internet.
Just like the new trail, you spend a fair amount of time on an decommissioned road until about 4000ft. The trail is actually easy to follow in most places for being abandoned (as long as you are paying attention), although it has plenty of water between 3500-4000ft and quite a few trees down on the ridge between the lookout and the talus field. Not to mention all the growing tree branches you have to walk through to “stay” on the ridge section.
I was glad I went this time of year because the trail is very brushy but had no leaves or was dying back for the season. Not that I don’t have plenty of scratches from wearing hiking sandals. The boulders in the talus field were cool and I scrambled up the middle summit as far as I felt comfortable being by myself. I’m a hiker, not a climber.
It was strange to see the folks over on the east peak but I had the whole trail to myself today! My trip took about 6 hours, I did have to retrace my steps a few times around the lookout section before I made it to the ridge. I saw lots of fresh evidence of elk and what I am guessing is bobcat.
For a more detailed trip report, you can read my blog post HERE.
Directions: From the town of Skykomish, drive east to FR 6066 (there is a yellow sign on the right side of road). The turn is on the left after the ranger station and the road becomes 2 lanes (1.8 miles). Follow FR 6066 road for a about 4.5 miles (keep right at the Y). When the road comes around a bend to the right and starts to flatten out (about 2700ft), look for a decommissioned road on the left hand side that goes up parallel to the road (there are a few large boulders). There is no parking area but a few small pullout areas before and after the TH.
For more hikes on HWY 2, click HERE.
For more information about the lookout that used to be on West Peak, visit THIS site for old pictures.