Bare Mountain Trail

Alpine Lakes Wilderness Area, Washington

Elevation Gain4,021ft
Trailhead Elevation2,112ft
Elevation Min/Max2112/5315ft
Elevation Start/End2112/2112ft

Bare Mountain Trail

Bare Mountain Trail is a hiking trail in King County, Washington. It is within Alpine Lakes Wilderness Area. It is 4.1 miles long and begins at 2,112 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 8.4 miles with a total elevation gain of 4,021 feet. The trail ends near Bare Mountain (elevation 5,210 feet). This trail connects with the following: Bear Basin Trail.

Bare Mountain Trail Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

60 Hikes within 60 Miles: Seattle - Including Bellevue, Everett, and Tacoma (Menasha Ridge Press)
Andrew Weber and Bryce Stevens
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"Covering almost 400,000 acres between Snoqualmie Pass and Stevens Pass, the Alpine Lakes Wilderness attracts some 150,000 visitors each year. On a typical summer weekend when the hordes are camped at the Enchantment Lakes, Bare Mountain presents a great alternate escape. Tucked into a little-used corner of the wilderness area, this former fire-lookout site provides great high Cascade views, including three glaciated volcanoes."
Day Hiking: Snoqualmie Region (The Mountaineers Books)
Dan A. Nelson
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"Any time you can hike to the site of an old fire-watch station, you know you’ll have grand views—after all, those fire spotters needed a 360-degree panorama to be effective. Bare Mountain stands as one of those old fire-tower sites and, nestled in the westernmost part of the Cascades, this trail offers a unique opportunity to enjoy a wild-country hike with views of the Puget Sound lowlands."

Bare Mountain Trail Trip Reports

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It was a pretty hot day -- at least down in the Puget Sound. Up in the Alpine Lakes Wilderness it was a good 10-15F degrees cooler, but still pretty warm. I sweated buckets getting up to Bare Mountain Peak, but the views (and the satisfaction) was worth it! The trail guide is spot on, so don't deviate from it. Minor notes: There is no bridge at the part of the trail map which indicates "falls" and "pools in creek", and the water was pretty swift due to snow melt run-off. You can still hop-skip across using exposed rocks, and an old tree or two, but be careful. I managed to get my boots wet on the way back from slipping off of one of the rocks coming back across. Also, there were still spots of snow very near the peak of Bare Mountain, but easily navigable -- just be careful with your footing. All-in-all, one of my favorite hikes in the entire Pacific Northwest for the sheer beauty and isolation. No very many people get out that way...
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Everything in the trail guide is accurate and well described so heed any warnings or advice the author has given! The only thing I would contribute to the review is extra emphasis on the part about being remotely located due to the long, back road drive.

This area puts you well outside of cell phone range so come prepared for any inconvenience, big or small. On my way to the trailhead, I happened to run into a family who had been out camping the night before and when getting ready to leave they discovered their car battery had died. Had I not conveniently crossed their path they could have had a 20 mile walk back to North Bend! Luckily I had jumper cables so we were all able to continue about our day with minimal interruption.

My next observation regarding the remote location was finding that only one other vehicle was parked at the trailhead and the information board didn't contain anything really useful other than the name of the trail. There were instructions for completing a trail registration crookedly duct taped to the board, but no blank registration forms to complete...or for that matter, a place to deposit one if they had been available. It seemed like the last time anyone had been there to update the board may have been 2006 as a hand-written trail report from that year was laying on the ground.

If you are prepared and the remote location doesn't discourage or intimidate you, then you definitely will not be disappointed with this hike. The views are incredible, the scenery breathtaking and you and the little Hummingbirds will likely be the only ones there.

Bare Mountain Trail Photos

Trail Information

Alpine Lakes Wilderness Area
Nearby City
Alpine Lakes Wilderness Area
Mount Baker- Snoqualmie National Forest, Snoqualmie Ranger District, North Bend office
Local Contacts
Green Trails Mount Si No. 174 and Skykomish No. 175
Local Maps

Trail Log