This is an outstanding hike with all the bells and whistles: water falls, deep forested areas, steep cliffs, amazing views, ridge line hiking, and a loop for maximum exposure.
Features: The hike begins fairly steep for about a mile then levels as we approach two falls: Hardy Falls (visible by taking a short detour) and Rodney Falls (visible as you cross Hardy Creek on a bridge at the foot of the falls). Then the trail becomes much steeper gaining nearly 1800' in about 2 miles. We’ll come to a junction where the trail meets with the return side of the loop from the back side of Hamilton Mountain. We’ll continue straight ahead and come to the base of Little Hamilton. We work our way around to the west side of the slope and begin a very vigorous climb through a series of small switchbacks. At about 3 miles it levels out and we begin to feast on breathtaking vistas of the Columbia River Gorge and Beacon Rock. Climbing higher and higher, you can see more of the mountains of Oregon to the south until you finally reach the top of Hamilton, and a rest area with an incredible view. We return by walking the ridge line to the north for about a mile while continuing to enjoy expansive views of Table Mountain to the northeast, and Mt Hood to the southeast. The trail eventually hooks up with a service road we follow for about a mile before entering back into the forest. The loop joins at the trail we came up on which brings us back to the TH.
Mileage: 9.4 mi. Loop
Elevation: approx. 2085 feet gain
Pace: 1.5-2 mph (approx. 6-7 hours total)
Difficulty: DIFFICULT – (Challenging due to steepness of trail and length of hike)
Beginners: Adventurous beginners (in very good shape), and all other experience levels.
Dogs: No Dogs on this one - sorry
Weather: Will advise as known
Leave Gateway: 8:15am
Arriv. TH 9:15am
Leave TH: 5:00pm
Back at Gateway: Approx. 6:00pm
I205 N to WA Rt.14E to Beacon Rock State Park. Go left up hill and park in day area.
Driving $$: Round-trip mileage is approximately 80 miles from Gateway. We suggest a mileage contribution of 10 cents/mile/person, or $8. Exact change makes it easier. Nobody will be turned away for inability to contribute.
** MUST BRING FOLLOWING ! !
(includes compass, whistle, water filtration, extra food, extra clothing, something to start fire, first aid kit, sunglasses/sunscreen)
Waterproof boots (sturdy, leather boots are suggested)
Rain jacket and pants
gloves, hat, extra pair of socks
warm layers (NO COTTON ! )
lunch and snacks
2 liters of water
Gas Money for the drivers
(Suggested if you have them)
Map of the area
Insulated sit-pad or waterproof plastic bag with extra clothes in it (to take breaks)
******** IMPORTANT ********
CARPOOLING: ALL attendees SHOULD come prepared to drive themselves to the destination and be prepared to meet, ODOT requirements. Not sure if you’re in compliance? See link to ODOT http://www.oregon.gov...
RIDE AT YOUR OWN RISK; WE do not deem a driver or vehicle safe.
PARTICIPATE AT YOUR OWN RISK; Northwest Wilderness Group organizers are volunteers. We come prepared to lead you on a trail but assume no liability for your safety getting to the trailhead or on the trail.
Pls. NOTE: A lot of people wind up on the waitlist. If your plans change and you are unable to attend, please be considerate & update your RSVP as soon as you know.
Waiting List Notice: The waiting list for this hike is manual. If a spot opens up, everyone on the list receives an email. The first to respond gets the spot. If you don't have a spot, thank you for your interest and we hope to see you on a future event.