Length: 8 miles round trip
Elevation Change: 1400' gain
Season: Early Summer thru Fall
Permit: NW Forest Pass Required
The Newton Creek Loop Hike is an enjoyable summer hike with outstanding
views and floral displays. The hike begins near the Mt Hood Meadows Sno Park area and travels level for nearly the first
mile. Like the Gnarl Ridge Hike, the most difficult part of the hike is crossing Newton Creek.
However, on this hike you have to cross Newton Creek twice. The water is
fast and depending on the time of year or current weather conditions, the water can
vary greatly in depth. Use caution crossing. After reaching the north side of the
creek, the trail climbs vigorously for about a half mile through a series of 9 switchbacks.
At the top of the ridge, the trail intersects the trail to Bluegrass Ridge and Gnarl Ridge.
If you continue straight ahead, you will come to Elk Meadows. However, follow Trail #652
on your left up Gnarl Ridge toward Mt Hood.
In a little over a half mile you will pass the intersection of Trail #652A which also leads
to Elk Meadows. Continuing on you will come to the Timberline Trail #600. Follow this
trail to the left downhill toward Newton Creek. This is the point where you have to
cross Newton Creek again. This crossing always seems more difficult that the lower crossing.
Carrying wading shows in your pack is a smart idea. Use Caution.
After crossing the creek, the trail climbs up Newton Ridge where it intersects Trail #646. Follow
this trail downhill following Newton Creek. You will then complete the loop by joining
Trail #645 which takes you back to the trail head where you started the hike.
Mt. Hood as seen from the Newton Creek crossing