Mount Adams: South Climb

Mt. Adams/Indian Heaven Wilderness/Goat Rocks, Washington

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Mount Adams: South Climb

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  • Mount Adams, South Climb.- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Mount Adams, South Climb.- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Mount Adams, South Climb.- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Mount Adams, South Climb.- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • View of Mount Hood (11,250') to the south.- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Mount Adams, South Climb.- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Mount Adams, South Climb.- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Mount Adams, South Climb.- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Light spring rains blowing through.- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Evening view toward Mount St. Helens (8,366').- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Overnight accommodations at Lunch Counter (roughly 8,700').- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Lunch Counter set up with Mount St. Helens (8,366') in the distance.- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Sunset view of Mount Hood (11,250') to the south.- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Sunset over Mount St. Helens (8,366').- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Mount Adams, South Climb: Sunset from Lunch Counter.- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Mount Adams, South Climb: Sunset from Lunch Counter.- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Sunset and view of Piker's Peak (the false summit on Mount Adams).- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Sunset from Lunch Counter on Mount Adams.- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Mount Adams, South Climb.- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Mount Adams, South Climb.- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Mount Adams, South Climb.- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Sunrise view south to Mount Hood (11,250').- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Mount Adams, South Climb.- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Mount Adams, South Climb.- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • View to the north to Mount Rainier (14,409') shrowded in clouds.- Mount Adams: South Climb
  • Sunset over the lunch counter as Mount Adams looms above and Mount St. Helens rests in the distance.- Mount Adams: South Climb
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Perfect for beginning mountaineers. Non-technical.
Cons: 
Very heavily used.
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Region:
Mt. Adams/Indian Heaven Wilderness/Goat Rocks, WA
Congestion: 
High
Preferable Season(s):
Summer
Day-Use/Parking Pass Required:
Cascade Volcano Pass ($15.00)
Total Distance: 
11.40 mi (18.35 km)
Trailhead Elev.: 
5,600 ft (1,707 m)
Net Elev. Gain: 
6,680 ft (2,036 m)
Trail Uses:
Hiking
Trail type: 
There-and-back
Dogs allowed: 
No
Current Local Weather:
Powered by Dark Sky

Today

Partly cloudy starting in the evening.
56°F
40°

Wed

Partly cloudy overnight.
56°F
41°

Thu

Partly cloudy in the morning.
51°F
39°

Fri

Clear throughout the day.
58°F
38°

Sat

Clear throughout the day.
63°F
40°

Sun

Partly cloudy overnight.
65°F
43°

Mon

Mostly cloudy starting in the afternoon.
66°F
45°
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Hike Description

Hike Description

Contributor

Sprouting out of the Gifford Pinchot National Forest, the snowcapped peak of Mount Adams dominates the horizon along with neighboring Mount Rainier. The summit towers over 6,000 feet above the trailhead.  In the early season climbers will see a snow covered mountaineer's route leading straight out of the parking lot; in summer months the trail is a beaten path flanked by wildflowers.

Climbers who reach Crescent Glacier are faced with the meandering snowfields that lead to Lunch Counter, a campsite with spectacular views of the summit.  Here the leisure climber can camp in one of the many wind protected tent sites and wait for the breathtaking sunset when the sun dips behind neighboring Mount St. Helens. Arriving at the false summit, climbers find themselves immersed in a white moonscape, with the real summit nearly a stone’s throw away.  From the summit you'll have panoramic views of Mount Rainier to the north, Mount St. Helens to the west, and Mount Hood to the south, not to mention the cloud blanketed valleys below. Be sure to liberally apply sunscreen to battle the intense sun and to watch for storms that roll in quickly on unsuspecting climbers.

While the South Route is not a technical climb, a helmet, ice ax, and crampons are highly advised.

Note: Between June 1 and September 31 a Cascade Volcano Pass is required for travel above 7,000 feet.  The pass can be obtained at the Mount Adams Ranger Station in Trout Lake, Washington (509.395.3400), or it can be ordered online for receipt by mail. The cost is $15 for weekends, $10 for weekdays, or $30 for an annual pass. The permit stub for each climber must be displayed in the windshield of your vehicle.

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Updates, Tips + Comments

Field Guide + Trail Map

Field Guide + Trail Map

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Location + Directions

Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(9 within a 30 mile radius)

Nearby Adventures

(29 within a 30 mile radius)

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