Hike 39
The Gifford Pinchot National Forest
Mount Margaret Hike
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THE FOLLOWING MAP IS NOT TO BE USED FOR NAVIGATIONAL PURPOSES.
Map of the Mt Margaret, Norway Pass Hike

Length: 11.4 Miles round trip
Elevation Change: 2400' Cumulative Elevation gain
Season: Mid-Summer thru Mid-Fall
Difficulty:   Difficult
Permit:   NW Forest Pass Required
Volcano Alert Call this number to see if this trail is closed:  360-449-7800


Features:

Here is a long hike with more beauty than the human eye can absorb. The hike is listed as difficult due to the elevation gain and length. In season this hike offers great floral displays. The hike begins at the Norway Pass Trail Head.

The trail is steep during the first mile as it gains nearly 900 feet. As the trail climbs your views of the surrounding valleys, hills, and mountains improve. At 1 mile you come to the junction of Trail #227A. Bear right and continue on Trail #1 toward Norway Pass.

In a little over another mile you will gain elevation and then lose some. Views of Mt Rainier improve dramatically. When you reach Norway Pass, you come to the junction of Trail #227 that leads back to Independence Pass. After taking a million photos or so of Mt St Helens, continue on toward Mt Margaret.

The trail now begins to climb vigorously. From now on you will be treated to exceptional vistas of Mt Adams to the east. There are adequate switchbacks so the climb is not difficult. Views of Mt St Helens keep getting better and better. At about another mile you will come to the junction with Trail #211 which leads to the lake basin on the north side of the Mt Margaret complex. Keep straight ahead on Trail #1.

In another mile you will begin to get views looking north toward Mt Rainier, and the lake basin below you. In season you may be treated to various encounters with the elk of the area... at least to their bugling. If you hike here early in the summer, you will encounter snow. If you hike here late in the summer or early fall you will encounter huckleberries by the billions.

In about another mile you will come to the junction with the abandoned Trail #214 to Mt Whittier. Keep on straight ahead with Trail #1 toward Mt Margaret. In another mile you will come to the spur trail which leads to the top of Mt Margaret. Follow this Trail #1F to the top and feast on the unparalleled views.



Mt Margaret in the Mt St Helens National Volcanic Area
Mt Margaret peeks from behind an unnamed cliff
How to get there:

From Woodland, WA
From Woodland follow SR 503 and the Lewis River Road for about 48 miles to the community of Cougar, WA. From Cougar, continue east on the Lewis River Road which will turn into Forest Road 90 after you enter the Gifford Pinchot National Forest. In about 18.5 miles you will come to the junction of Forest Road 25. Forest Road 90 makes a right turn, downhill at this junction, but you will need to continue straight ahead on what is now FR25. Follow FR25 north for approximately 25 miles, passing the Cedar Flats Natural Area, and the junction to Forest Road 93, which takes you to the Craggy Peak hike and the Hat Rock Overlook hike, past Elk Pass and the junction of Forest Road 28 which leads to the Craggy Peak hike, and finally you will come to Forest Road 99 on your left, which is the road that leads to the Windy Ridge side of the Mt. St. Helens National Volcanic Monument and many hikes.

From Carson, WA
If however, you plan to approach this hike from the Columbia River Gorge area, then begin at Carson, Washington and head northwest on the Wind River Hwy. In 7.5 miles you will pass through the little community of Stabler, and in another 5.8 miles you will come to the junction of Forest Road 30. Turn right onto FR30 and follow this road for 13.2 miles north along the Wind River and then up a steep incline and onto a plateau where you will come to the junction of the Curly Creek Road. Turn left onto the Curly Creek Road and follow it downhill past an excellent view area for about 5.1 miles until you come to Forest Road 90. Turn left onto FR90 and follow it for about 4.1 miles. You will descent to and cross the Lewis River then come to the junction with Forest Road 25. Make a sharp right turn onto FR25. Follow FR25 north for approximately 25 miles, passing the Cedar Flats Natural Area, and the junction to Forest Road 93, which takes you to the Craggy Peak hike and the Hat Rock Overlook hike, past Elk Pass and the junction of Forest Road 28 which leads to the Craggy Peak hike, and finally you will come to Forest Road 99 on your left, which is the road that leads to the Windy Ridge side of the Mt. St. Helens National Volcanic Monument and many hikes.

From Randle, WA
Go south out of Randle on SR 131, cross the Cowlitz River, and you will come to Forest Road 23 on your left. Stay on SR 131 heading south and soon this road will become Forest Road 25. Continue south on FR25 for almost 20 miles and you will come to Forest Road 99 on your right.

From junction of FR25 and FR99
After turning onto Forest Road 99, you will climb westward for about 9 miles before coming to Forest Road 26 on your right, which takes your to the Norway Pass TH, which is also the parking area for the Mt. Margaret hike.



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A Virtual Hike of the Mt. St. Helens National Volcanic Monument


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