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Pets allowed
Yes
Elevation Gain
?
Trail type
There-and-back
Distance
7.50 mi (12.07 km)
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The Hamilton Mountain Trail is a great hike on the north side of the Columbia River Gorge. The trail starts at Beacon Rock State Park, which offers nearby seasonal camping, and the hike up Beacon Rock could be added if energy remains after hiking Hamilton.  Hamilton Mountain remains a great option in the winter as the trail is typically passable year-round. Access to the upper parking area is gated during these months, however, so parking is relegated to the pullouts around the Beacon Rock Trailhead; you then hike the half-mile up the road on the north side of the highway to the upper parking area. The trailhead is clearly marked at the north side of the upper parking area.

Towering 2,400 feet above the Columbia River Gorge, Hamilton Mountain feels much higher then it actually is. Strong gorge winds and a southern exposure combine to make much of the second half of the ascent, including the peak, open and free of vegetation. That said, this hike really has it all: sections pass through tranquil woods, over mountain streams, and provide terrific views of two waterfalls.

The trail enters the woods and climbs gently before dropping briefly into the Hardy Creek Drainage, where a short side trail leads to a view of Hardy Falls below.  Soon another trail makes a short climb up to the Pool of the Winds that lies at the base of the 50-foot Rodney Falls. Once the trail crosses the creek the ascent starts in earnest; after several switchbacks, look for the first of several cliff-top viewpoints and Little Hamilton Mountain. This is a good point to turn around if a you are short on time. If you are continuing to the summit of Hamilton Mountain, stay on the trail as it follows along the ridge and climbs steeply toward the end. The summit offers sweeping views of the Columbia River Gorge, Mount Hood as it looms over the southern peaks, and the ordered company town of North Bonneville below.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Winter
Spring
Summer
Fall

Congestion

Moderate

Parking Pass

Washington Discovery Pass

Pros

Great views. Waterfalls. Close to Portland. Passable nearly year-round.

Cons

Washington Discovery Pass is required. Can be very windy.

Trailhead Elevation

260.00 ft (79.25 m)

Net Elevation Gain

2,217.00 ft (675.74 m)

Address

Hamilton Mountain Trail
Stevenson, WA 98648
United States

Features

Waterfalls
Big vistas
Wildflowers

Location

Field Guide + Map

Comments

05/30/2017
One of our favorite Gorge hikes!!!
05/21/2017
This hike was great! The views were fantastic and the waterfall was amazing!
Beautiful hike at Hamilton Mountain on 5/30. The summit was a bit buggy, so we sat and had lunch on the saddle. The west side of the saddle was bug and wind free and had a great view.
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