Elevation Gain
3,000.00 ft (914.40 m)
Trail type
7.00 mi (11.27 km)
Warming hut
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Mount Margaret stands high above the eastern shores of Keechelus Lake and directly across Interstate 90 from the Snoqualmie Pass East Ski Area. The Alpine Lakes Wilderness boundary happens to pass right over the mountain's summit, where the views north into the depths of this pristine land are nothing short of spectacular. While this area is no secret for the locals during the summer months, with a pair of snowshoes and some tenacity in colder weather, you can forget about running into any crowds. 

This route begins where the plowed portion of Forest Road 4832 ends. In heavy snow years, you can count on a mile of abutting interstate road travel to the bridge crossing at Rocky Run. Your decision to leave the road here will dramatically effect the remainder of your day. Sticking with the road sends you further southwest on an extended tour that switchbacks up the Wolfe Creek Valley to the Mount Margaret summer trailhead. The preferred route shaves miles off by heading due east up the forested slopes along the south banks of Rocky Run. Leave the creek in 0.5 miles as it veers off to the northeast and steer your way into more dense second-growth. A solid eastward bearing will take you up over two logging roads, both offering great views of Keechelus Lake to fuel your motivation. 

After passing the second road you'll enter a large clear-cut overspread with new-growth Pacific silver fir where you can look northeast up to Mount Margaret's forested summit. The last leg continues east into thicker stands of fir where you climb up to a ridge crest to meet the summer trail. Follow the trail corridor north around a large promontory to reach a sturdy final pitch to the true summit. You'll feel tall here, with a panoramic view that includes the Stuart Range, Eastern Washington, Mount Rainier, and even Mount Adams on an exceptionally clear day.  

Always check weather and avalanche conditions before traveling into the backcountry.

Recommended Gear

Before you head out on your next Mount Hood adventure, make sure you have the right gear! 

Here's a list of our go-to snowshoeing essentials to get you started:

Snowshoes: MSR Lightning Ascent Snowshoe

Cushioned, Made in USA, Ultralight, 98.8 oz

Men's • $299.95 • MSR | Amazon | Backcountry | REI

Women's • $299.95 • MSR | Amazon | Backcountry | REI

Jacket/Shell: Arc'teryx Zeta AR Jacket

Waterproof, Adjustable Drawcord Hem, Pit Zips, GORE-TEX

Men's • $431-475 • Arc'teryx | Amazon | Backcountry

Women's • $475 • Arc'teryx | Amazon | Backcountry

Pack: Mammut Nirvana Pro Pack 

35L, Carry-On Size, Hip Belt, Ice Axe / Pole Loops, Hydration Compatible

Standard Fit • $189.95-199.95 • Mammut | Amazon | Backcountry

Small Fit • $199.95 • Mammut | Amazon

Insulating Layer: Moosejaw Dequindre Down Jacket

Water-resistant, Insulated, Adjustable Drawcord Hem

Men's and Women's • $179

Poles: Black Diamond Traverse Pole 

Aluminum, Adjustable with Lever Lock System, 21 oz.

$79.95 • Black Diamond | Amazon | Backcountry | REI

Gloves: The North Face GORE-TEX Gloves

Waterproof, Adjustable, Insulated, GORE-TEX

Men's • $99.95-181.63 • The North Face | Amazon | Backcountry

Women's • $99.95-100.00 • The North Face | Backcountry

Boots: Vasque Snowblime UltraDry Boot

Waterproof, Cushioned, Insulated

Men's • $149.99 • Vasque | Amazon | Backcountry

Women's • $149.99 • Vasque | Amazon | Backcountry

Gaiters: Outdoor Research Verglas Gaiter 

Waterproof, Breathable, Lightweight, Abrasion-resistant

Men's • $41.32-65 • Outdoor Research | Amazon | Backcountry | REI

Women's • $49.95-65 • Outdoor Research | Amazon | Backcountry | REI

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass

Sno-Park Parking Permit (required in OR + WA 11.01 thru 04.30)


Pockets of old-growth forest. Fantastic views of the Central Cascades.


Old clear-cuts. Snowmobile access on lower slopes.

Pets allowed


Trailhead Elevation

2,550.00 ft (777.24 m)


Big vistas
Old-growth forest

Typically multi-day


Groomed trail



Nearby Adventures

Alpine Lakes Wilderness, Washington
Alpine Lakes Wilderness, Washington
Alpine Lakes Wilderness, Washington

Nearby Lodging + Camping

Alpine Lakes Wilderness, Washington
Alpine Lakes Wilderness, Washington
Alpine Lakes Wilderness, Washington


Did this today. Lightly snowed on us all day long. Snow was in good condition in the am but became soft in the afternoon making the descent more challenging. Proximity to I-90 and snowmobile trails makes the hike more noisy than I'd care for but it still is some beautiful scenery.
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