Kamiak Butte

Colfax, Washington

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Kamiak Butte stands like an island in the rolling wheat fields of the Palouse country—not merely a physical island of rock jutting up above the fertile soils of the Palouse hills but also an “ecosystem island.” The dry butte supports a rich sage desert ecosystem on its southeastern face, with a lush forest—ponderosa pine, Douglas fir, grand fir, even some cedar—on its north face. This combination of vegetation provides excellent habitat for an array of birds and animals, and the high top of the butte offers outstanding views of the sprawling Palouse country of southeast Washington (and Idaho).
Best Desert Hikes Washington

DESCRIPTION FROM:

Best Desert Hikes Washington

by Alan L. Bauer & Dan A. Nelson (The Mountaineers Books)

Kamiak Butte stands like an island in the rolling wheat fields of the Palouse country—not merely a physical island of rock jutting up above the fertile soils of the Palouse hills but also an “ecosystem island.”

The dry butte supports a rich sage desert ecosystem on its southeastern face, with a lush forest—ponderosa pine, Douglas fir, grand fir, even some cedar—on its north face. This combination of vegetation provides excellent habitat for an array of birds and animals, and the high top of the butte offers outstanding views of the sprawling Palouse country of southeast Washington (and Idaho).

©  Alan L. Bauer & Dan A. Nelson/The Mountaineers Books. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Hiking
Nearby City: Colfax
Distance: 3.5
Trail Type: Loop/Lollipop
Skill Level: Moderate
Duration: 2 to 3 hours
Season: March through November
Trailhead Elevation: 2,700 feet
Top Elevation: 3,600 feet
Local Contacts: Whitman County Parks
Local Maps: Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Pullman
Driving Directions: Directions to Kamiak Butte

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May 2018