Little Saint Helens from Carter Creek

Ian and I parked on Road 55 next to the bridge over Carter Creek. We hiked through the open second growth forest on the east side of Carter Creek to Carter Creek Camp on the John Wayne Pioneer Trail. The "backcountry campground" even has its own nice, new outhouse.

From the campground we continued up the slope heading SSE through much younger forest. This went on for about a thousand vertical feet, it wasn't horribly brushy though, I had skis strapped to my pack and made it through without much frustration. Finally we hit the logging road that contours around the north slopes of Little Saint Helens around 3,400'.

We followed the road east until the trees above thinned out a bit between the two broad ridges that run north from Little Saint Helens. We regained the western-most of the ridges around 3,600' and followed it to the summit.

From 3,600' on it was open slopes. Actually, it was logged out all the way to the summit and there were many young trees but they were mostly buried in the snow. I wonder how long ago this was logged out? At 4,000' I imagine the forest regrows very slowly. It made for great for skiing.

  • Date:
    Elevation gain:
    3,100 feet
    Trip type:
    scramble/backcountry ski
    USGS quads:
    Bandera, Findley Lake
    South Fork Snoqualmie Drainage
    7 hours 3 minutes
    • 4 hours 36 minutes ascending from Carter Creek and Road 55 to summit of Little Saint Helens
    • 2 hours 1 minute descending from summit of Little Saint Helens to Carter Creek and Road 55
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  • Ascending the N side of Little Saint Helens
    Ascending the N side of Little Saint Helens

  • Copyright © 2022 Gabriel Deal.