hike: Bald Mountain via Lolo Pass
This hike along the Pacific Crest Trail connects with many popular trails on Mount Hood, including the Timberline Trail. Take an unmarked trail to the top of Bald Mountain for an upfront view of Mount Hood.
distance: 6.6 miles (out and back)
elevation gain: 1,400 ft.
drive time from Portland: 1 hour 30 minutes
parking pass: none
hike description: OregonHikers.org – Bald Mountain from Lolo Pass
The trail begins at a sign for the Pacific Crest Trail and heads through thick forest with rhododendrons that bloom in late June/early July. Heading up the ridge, switchbacks making the ascent easy.
In early summer, snow can linger on the lower sections of trail.
In the early summer, avalanche lilies bloom next to the trail.
After the switchbacks, the trail continues along a ridge with occasional openings in the forest and views of nearby ridges and Mount Hood.
Reach the Top Spur junction near three miles in, then continue to a four-way junction and wilderness permit sign-in. Take the trail immediately to the right of the signs. For the unmarked trail to the summit, look for an obvious trail on the left, about 100 feet past the junction.
This trail is short and steep, but not difficult, as it leads 0.3 miles to the top.
Views of Mount Hood from here are amazing!
After a break at the top, we headed back down and continued around Bald Mountain for more views of Mount Hood and the surrounding ridges. Take the Cutoff Trail to go up and over a small ridge, then turn left at the Timberline Trail to return to the PCT.