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Hamilton Mountain hike at Beacon Rock State Park

Beacon Rock is an 848-foot basalt column that formed the core of an ancient volcano. It towers over the Columbia River.  The Hamilton Mountain trail starts close by and is steep and rocky in places.  There are two waterfalls along the way to the summit.

This is a scenic adventure in a different neighborhood!  It's well worth the 2.5 hour drive to this popular peak in the Columbia River Gorge, Beacon Rock State Park, about 30 miles east of Vancouver.  It's a bit early for wildflowers, but you'll have great views along the trail.  There will probably be some snow, so Microspikes or Yaktraks are strongly recommended.  We will meet at 6 a.m. in the Olympia area for an early start on the trail.  Expect to be home fairly late, so do not make evening plans.  Camping is available in the park.  Discover Pass required.

9 miles rt, 2,000+ elevation gain.  Pace will be adjusted according to group strength.  Optional trek to the top of Beacon Rock adds about 2 miles, 600' gain.  Winter layers and ten essentials required. 

Please note:  If you're not a Mountaineers club member you can go on two trips every year as a guest.  Click on this link: Mountaineers Guest to create your account, it's quick and easy!  You can then sign up for the hike on The Mountaineers website.  (You will have to do this if you are not a Mountaineers club member and you want to go on the trip.)

If you are already a member of The Mountaineers, you can sign yourself up online.

Remember - the Sound Sound Mountaineers Meetup Group simply represents the Olympia branch of The Mountaineers club - they are two entirely separate entities.  Click here to learn more about The Mountaineers.

**JOIN The Mountaineers and you'll go on an unlimited number of hikes!**


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  • Chad M.

    I was going to upload some pictures - but it appears as if we all took pictures from the same places! :) I had an awesome time - thanks for planning this Nancy... was nice to meet everyone.

    March 17, 2014

  • Nancy L.

    I love your pictures, thank you Kathy!

    March 16, 2014

  • Nancy L.

    I echo Cynthia and Sheila, this was a wonderful trip with great people, uniquely beautiful scenery, perfect weather, excellent workout - a "groovy" adventure!

    2 · March 16, 2014

  • Sheila L.

    Fun! Fun! Fun! This was a fantastic hike made even better by the people. Nancy was a great organizer and she had a wealth of knowledge that she shared with us. Kudos to Nancy and Kathy for a job well done!

    March 16, 2014

  • Cynthia F.

    fantastic!

    March 16, 2014

  • Jim F.

    I have injured my foot (heel) and it won't quit hurting. I've tried all the trick I know. I shouldn't go on the hike this Saturday in the event it brings me to a halt in a bad location. I am very sorry, but I must cancel. I was so looking forward to Hamilton Mtn and I'll tell you why when we see each other in the future.
    Have a wonderful time.

    March 12, 2014

  • Steph

    Ok, thank you Nancy. I officially have not signed up through the Mountaineers web-site. I will do that soon. Thank you and again, have a great hike!

    March 7, 2014

    • Nancy L.

      I hope to see you on another hike, Steph!

      March 7, 2014

  • Steph

    Sorry-I had to cancel. I really want to go, but it is not going to work out this time. You all have a great time.

    March 6, 2014

    • Nancy L.

      Steph, you were not signed up with The Mountaineers. If you were, log in to your Mountaineers account and cancel yourself from the trip. I don't know your full name, so I can't take you off the club roster if you're on it. Remember - RSVPing in Meetup is separate from signing up for hikes with The Mountaineers.

      March 7, 2014

  • Nancy L.

    We're a group of ten! You can still sign up for the waitlist. There are often cancellations, even up to the day before.

    March 5, 2014

  • Nancy L.

    Hi Chad, yes this is one of my favorite Gorge hikes! I think if you get there at 8:30 that's good. We may arrive after that (restroom stops), but it shouldn't be later than 9:00. You have to turn off SR 14 and drive up the road to the trailhead. Here's the driving directions from the WTA website:
    From I-205 in Vancouver, Washington, drive east on State Highway 14 for 30 miles to Beacon Rock State Park. Turn left (north) and drive up into the day-use parking area.
    I'll be emailing everyone with more info a few days before our trip. Thanks for joining me!

    1 · February 24, 2014

  • Chad M.

    I have registered as a guest and signed up online. Can't wait for this hike / summit as this sounds incredible. Nancy - what time do you anticipate being at the trailhead? I will be in Portland that weekend, so will meet you guys there. I put it in my calendar for 8:30 at the trailhead.

    1 · February 24, 2014

  • Nancy L.

    Please read the "Please note" section in the activity description, click the links and follow the instructions. Your questions will be answered :)

    February 23, 2014

  • Steph

    Hey-I have a question- before I can go on this hike do I need to pay the dues to join, and become a member? Thanks. STeph

    February 23, 2014

  • Nancy L.

    Hi fellow hikers, I'm sure you'll enjoy this trip! Please remember to sign up online at:
    http://www.mountaineers.org/source/atrips/TripRegister.cfm?Event=38299

    February 23, 2014

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