Beware Nov 1-30, 2016 on the Washington side of the Gorge, where the PCT follows along a powerline corridor from Bridge of the Gods (Highway 14) about one mile north. A crew from the utility company will be brushing and tree trimming with heavy equipment. They’ll stop hikers for a short time if needed for safety, but usually, they’ll be able to stop their work for trail users to pass through.
Heading North, trail had some trees across the trail north of Urich Cabin but easy to cross or bypass other than one large tree four miles south of Snoqualmie. Cut a bypass trail around it. Entire section is passable with stock as of Aug. 21,2016.
There’s an active logging operation where the trail crosses private land between Table Mountain and Three Corner Rock, in Southern Washington. Flaggers are on site to delay hikers up to 15 minutes when conditions may be hazardous. The work is expected to continue until about the end of August.
The summer is coming very late this year and both natural conditions and trail maintenance are not yet to where they would be for a July hike. Several pieces of the trail have significant amounts of large downed trees, notably south of Deep Lake to Waptus Trail 1310, and from Lemah Creek south to Spectacle Lake. While most are passable by hikers (only once did I have to remove my pack), it will slow travel time significantly. Between Waptus and Escondido Ridge, the brush was thick enough to slow you down also. This stretch is impassable by stock.
Water levels are high for this time of year. The “potentially treacherous” ford just south of Deception Pass is still quite high and I have no idea how one hiker we met barely got his feet wet (he said he went far downstream). Everyone else got a thigh-high soak in cold, swift water. Many streams and creeks required knee high wet crossings where normally you could boulder hop or wade ankle deep.
Snow is still sitting in patches and in some cases in 1/8 mile traverses in the bowls at high elevation (Chickamin Ridge especially). You can see the trail, so you won’t get lost though, and it is crossable and good condition midday if you are comfortable with snow.
Bugs were really not bad with recent rain and cold. Deception Lake was awful, plan not to stop there yet. Temperatures were in the 50s by day and 40s at night.
All in all, this section’s challenges are as though it is late June, rather than July.
Bring deet 100 and nets around the 4th of july time. The mosquitos made us backtrack 2 miles for a mosquitoe free(ish) spot
Major access trail for ingress/egress to the PCT, the North Fork Sauk trail # 649, will be CLOSED between mile 5 at Mackinaw Shelter camp and the Junction with the Pacific Crest Trail beginning July 27, 2016. The trail will re-open the morning of August 4, 2016.
This closure is necessary for safety reasons. PCT trail work including the use of dynamite will be taking place.
Failure to obey these closures could result in serious injury and will cause significant delays in completion of the trail repairs.
Contact the Darrington Ranger District at 360-436-1155 for further information.
Hiked from Snoqualmie entrance to the Kendal Katwalk, trail is in good condition (mostly packed snow or ice) except for about 20 blow downs, they are passable but a lot of work.
We’ve received a heads up from the Cle Elum Ranger District that there will be blasting on the PCT next week, Sept. 15-18. Blasting site is at Delate Creek Bridge below Spectacle Lake. Trail guards will be posted and that section of trail will be closed intermittently for short periods of time during the operation. No long delays for hikers are anticipated.
- Equestrian issue
- Extreme hazard
- Snow conditions
- Trail Closure
- Trail maintenance issue
- Water conditions
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