Granite Mountain Winter Hike

Let's see if we can slip in a Granite Mountain hike (... and get lucky with the weather?) before the snow deepens.

Hiking conditioning required for this hike:  To sign up for this hike, you must be doing hikes of 8+ miles and 3000+ feet vertical gain on a regular basis and you must have the equipment and experience for rugged, cold, steep, winter travel on snow.

When signing up, please answer the sign-up questions as best you can.  Your answers need to demonstrate the required level of conditioning and experience.  RSVP's without definitive answers to the sign-up questions will be deleted.

Mandatory equipment:

Traction devices (Microspikes or Yak-Trax) are mandatory for this hike. (Microspikes are more rugged, easier to put on, bite deeper on ice, and the preference of most experienced winter hikers. If you purchase Yak-Trax, the Yak-Trax Pro is recommended; the standard Yak-Trax tend to break.)

The following equipment is also mandatory: sturdy hiking boots, gaiters, warm mittens/gloves, warm hat, layered non-cotton light and warm clothes and extra warm clothes, rain-jacket, rain-pants, extra non-cotton shirt to change into at the top, sunglasses, sunscreen, water, snacks and lunch.


• Distance: 8 miles RT

• Elevation Gain: 3800 feet

• High Point: 5629 feet

• Difficulty: very strenuous

• Hiking Time: ~ 6 hours, including lunch time.

• Hiking Speed: fast, 30 minutes per mile on trail, slower on snow

• Parking Pass: Northwest Forest Pass required to park at the trailhead.

• Dogs: Hikers only this hike.

• Carpooling: Carpooling is the default logistic, if you plan to get yourself directly to the trailhead without stopping at the carpool location, please mention so in your sign-up.

Schedule and Itinerary:

• 8:00 AM – Meet at the Issaquah Transit Center parking garage first floor, southwest corner.

• 8:15 AM – Leave the transit center.

• ~ 9:00 AM – Arrive at the Pratt Lake Trailhead (I-90 Exit 47, left over I-90, left at the T, drive to the trailhead parking lot at the end of the road).

• 9:15 AM – Start hiking.

• ~12:00 PM – Arrive at the summit lookout and have lunch.

• ~12:45 PM – Start hiking back.

• ~ 3:00 PM – Arrive back at the trailhead.

• ~ 4:00 PM – Arrive back at the park and ride.

Weather and avalanche conditions contingency:  If as we approach the hike date, the weather forecast or avalanche conditions are hazardous, this event posting may be revised to another hike, likely the Old Mt. Si Trail. 

What to bring (this is what experienced hikers wear and bring, for comfort both uphill and downhill): Sturdy hiking boots, gaiters, light or medium-weight non-cotton clothing for the uphill, very warm mittens or gloves, light or medium-weight hat, also a warm hat, rain-jacket, rain-pants, extra non-cotton shirt to change into at the top, warm, dry clothes, preferably fleece, for the downhill, 1+ liters of water, snacks, lunch, day-pack large enough to hold all the above, traction devices, sunglasses, sunscreen, headlamp. Optional and recommended: hiking poles, camera, waterproof pack-cover, hot chocolate!

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  • Aaron S

    You all were fantastic. It was total snowy fun and beauty all the way; way better than a hike ... an adventure!

    November 3, 2013

  • miki k.

    It was a beautiful hike with best weather. Thank you Aaron for organizing and giving us a color printed map. Thank you for everyone for fun time!

    November 3, 2013

  • Danny

    Thanks Aaron for organizing such a beautiful hike; and thanks everyone for making it a fun hike -:)

    November 3, 2013

  • Donna H

    Awesome! Even though I bailed 1/2 hour from the top. What a wimp!

    November 3, 2013

  • miki k.

    Daylight saving ends tonight.

    November 2, 2013

  • miki k.

    Can someone swing by at Kingsgate Park & Ride in Kirkland (and ride together to Issaquah TC?

    October 27, 2013

    • Donna H

      My number is[masked]

      November 2, 2013

    • Danny

      Thanks Donna, I don't know any of them, whatever works for you, I am coming from Bothell. My number is[masked]

      November 2, 2013

  • Cal F

    Hiked this last Saturday. It is one of my favorite hikes on I-90. Microspikes worn only the last .25 mile or so up. Scrambled down the ridge on decent, it was bare. Would make this my first hike with you guys, but I am not going to be able to keep to the 30 min mile after about 3000'. Still conditioning. maybe next season.
    My GPS log showed me averaging only about 1.5MPH climbing.

    October 27, 2013

    • Cal F

      just looked at your schedule. We were at trailhead @ 8am and back at 3pm. An hour slower than you plan.

      October 27, 2013

    • Aaron S

      Thanks for the info, Cal. Sounds like you had a good hike. By the time we hike it, there will likely be more snow and a lower snowline.

      October 27, 2013

  • pat

    Not gonna make this one as much as I like that hike. Just had to compliment the organizer for such a well planned hike.

    October 26, 2013

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