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Park Butte Trail #603

Intermediate

Trail

4.1 mile 6.7 kilometer point to point
78% Runnable
Intermediate

Elevation

Ascent: 2,127' 648 m
Descent: -73' -22 m
High: 5,402' 1,646 m
Low: 3,341' 1,018 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 10% (6°)
Max Grade: 38% (21°)

Dogs

Unknown
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Map Key

Trail shared by Janae Brewster

An up-close-and-personal experience with Mt. Baker.

Janae Brewster

Features River/Creek · Views

Description

Park Butte is a great intermediate step for runner wanting to gain a little distance without too much strain in steep elevations. This run is in the heart of the Mount Baker Wilderness, and offers a range of scenery. It begins in meadows, then moves through a creek bed, up to the forest, back to meadows and a final push up a rocky butte to a mountain lookout.

Difficulty: In the nearly four-mile trek to the lookout, there’s only a 1.5-mile stretch through a shaded forest of climbing switchbacks. If you haven’t been doing anything with significant elevation gains, it’s wearisome. But after that stretch, it’s a pretty manageable, though long, climb the rest of the way.

View: Koma Kulshan can be quite the elusive peak with the PNW clouds shrouding her beauty. However, when the clouds give way, she is quite the sight. Since this trail is an access point for climbers, the mountain is up close and personal during the second leg of the trip. Traveling up the backside of the butte there are stunning views of the Sisters, and the lookout is perched with sweeping views of the mountains and ridges of the North Cascades.

Who else is on the trail: The trailhead is the same as the Easton Glacier climbing route up Mount Baker, so there may be some swoon-worthy climbers around. Other than that, there are few people here and there, but this is not a crowded trail.

Snapchat-ability: It doesn’t even seem worth it to bring a mobile device. Reception ends about 6 miles up the Baker Lake Road, and there’s not even a blip for the next 15 miles of driving and running.

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We need help with the following missing trail information:

Need to Know, Dogs Allowed, Flora & Fauna, Runner Notes

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Check-Ins

Sep 7, 2019
April Hughes

Trail Ratings

  4.5 from 8 votes

#5347

Overall
  4.5 from 8 votes
5 Star
63%
4 Star
25%
3 Star
13%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Trail Rankings

#227

in Washington

#5,347

Overall
11 Views Last Month
1,810 Since Mar 1, 2016
Intermediate

0%
63%
38%
0%

Photos

Park Butte trail before the final climb to the lookout tower.
Apr 22, 2015 near Sudden…, WA
Climbing Mount Baker - Mount Baker Wilderness
Nov 22, 2019 near Sudden…, WA
Mt Baker from Park Butte Trail.
Sep 14, 2016 near Sudden…, WA
Views into the surrounding mountains from the trail.
Mar 6, 2020 near Sudden…, WA
We had hoped for clear skies and majestic views of Mt. Baker, but I have to say this fog and rain was pretty cool too.
Aug 14, 2016 near Sudden…, WA
Just after the trailhead.
Aug 14, 2016 near Sudden…, WA

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