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Trapper Creek Wilderness


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General Information

Description - Trapper Creek Wilderness consists of 6,050 acres of diverse habitat located in the central portion of the Wind River Ranger District in the southern Cascades of Washington. The lower elevations typify an old-growth Douglas-fir forest while the higher elevations are characteristic of a second-growth Douglas-fir forest. Sparkling cascading streams and waterfalls are plentiful throughout the steep slopes at the lower elevations, while huckleberry fields occur in the higher elevations near Observation Peak. A small lake in the southern portion of the Wilderness adds to the diversity of habitats in the area.

Attractions - Spotted owls inhabit the Wilderness as well as barred owls, pileated woodpeckers and goshawks. Animals commonly seen in the area include blacktail deer, Roosevelt elk, and black bear. Cougar, bobcat, and pine marten can be seen occasionally.

Observation Peak, the location of a former lookout, offers sweeping views of Mount St. Helens, Mt. Adams, Mt. Rainier, and Mt. Hood. The lookout was established by 1917 to detect forest fires that were prevalent in the first quarter of this century. Access to Observation Peak is via Trail #132 which has historic use prior to 1917.

Recreation - Activities include hiking, backpacking and horseback riding. Trails in the wilderness include Observation Trail #132, which offers sweeping views of Mount St. Helens, Mt. Adams, Mt. Rainier, and Mt. Hood, Observation Peak Trail #132A, Big Hollow Trail #158, Big Slide Primitive Trail #195, Deer Cutoff Primitive Trail #209, Dry Creek Trail #194, Rim Primitive Trail #202, Soda Peaks Lake Trail #133, Sunshine Primitive Trail #198 and Trapper Creek Trails #192.2 and #192.2.

Climate - Climate on the Gifford Pinchot changes drastically with elevation. The area receives a high amount of precipitation. Much of the precipitation comes from October to April in the form of rain at the low elevations and as wet heavy snow in the higher elevations. Deep winter snowpacks accumulate in the high elevations.

Although snow is possible in the lowest elevations, it is infrequent. Late spring, summer and early autumn tend to bring clear, sunny days with moderate temperatures.

Location - The Trapper Creek Wilderness is located in the central portion of the Wind River Ranger District in the southern Cascades of Washington.


Current Conditions & Trip Reports

Trip Reports:
Add your own trip Report! Newly re-released feature. One of the most popular features on Wildernet, trip reports allow you to share your experiences with others. This is an invaluable resource for determining what to expect on your outdoor adventure, so please participate! To prevent spamming, you must be a registered user of Wildernet in order to submit a trip report

Filed By: Luke (portland, or)
Number of People Encountered: 0-10 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: This wilderness area is relatively undiscovered by hikers when considering how beautiful this area is. The cut-off trail are extremely hard to follow as well as the western part of trail # 192. I got lost up there but literally stumbled upon a herd of huge Roosevelt Elk after and rounded a bend. The closest one was probably 20-30 feet away. The view off Observation Peak is killer also and the Trapper Creek Valley is full of awe-inspiring Old-growth forest.


More Information

Contact Information:
Gifford Pinchot National Forest, 10600 NE 51st Circle, P.O. Box 8944 , Vancouver, WA, 98682, Phone: 360-891-5000, Fax: 360-891-5045, TTY: 360-891-5003

Additional Information:
Gifford Pinchot National Forest - The Gifford Pinchot National Forest is located in southwest Washington State. It lies between Mount Rainier National Park and the Columbia River Gorge, and includes the Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument.
Mt. Adams Ranger District - The Mount Adams Ranger District covers the southern portion of the Gifford Pinchot National Forest and offers hiking, biking, backpacking, camping, horseback riding, fishing, and cross-country skiing, snow shoeing and snowmobiling in the winter.

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