Mileage: 35 miles RT
Elevation Gain/Highest: 4300ft/5900ft
We spent a week camped at PCT mile 2533 (Vista Creek) doing trail work on the PCT as part of a 3 week long work party with the PCTA North 350 Blades at the beginning of July. The Suiattle River Trail is seeing a lot of love even though the weather is causing rotten trees to fall on a regular basis (trail was clear when we hiked in on the 1st but some trees had fallen when we walked out on the 8th). All the streams are flowing well, lots of water to be had.
Dolly Creek was high, best place to cross is downstream just a bit to where it is flat and more tame. We only saw about 6 people hiking while camped: 3 folks headed to Glacier Peak for the long weekend and 3 PCT hikers headed SOBO (prepared with ice axes). No one ever came from the PCT northbound except for the 3 Glacier Peak folks returning from their trip. The trail south from mile 2533 is free from downed trees and a lot of brush (or will be by the 14th) for at least 4 miles as you make your way up the switchbacks towards Vista Ridge at about 6000ft. We ventured up there on July 4th for the afternoon, taking a brief break from trail work.
Snow was intermittent until the campsite at mile 2529, which was snow free. To the ridge there was more snow but enough bare spots to keep the trail almost to where it contours around the ridge.
The trail to Grassy Point was mostly bare and beckoned but I didn’t have time to check it out on this trip.
Looking south on the PCT from the ridge the trail was covered intermittently with snow. The lineup of the peaks in the distance northbound was stellar, and that doesn’t even include Glacier Peak to the south!
Walking out on the 8th, we saw 4 more PCT SOBO hikers, some prepared on other not so much. Can’t wait to here about how they did at Fire Creek Pass!
I talk more about this hike on my Suiattle River Trail page, including directions and a local place I love to stop for good eats (and karaoke)!