Mt Sourdough Hike, WA

This is a beautiful, yet hard hike with an option to camp (backcountry permits required issued in Marblemount) at designated camping area (only 3 spots) about 1 mile before you reach the Lookout. The trail starts off Diablo Street in Ross Lake Recreational Area (off route 20), and is well marked all the way up. There are quite a few parking spots along that unpaved road. The trail continues up through the forest for the first 2 miles or so, slowly uncovering gorgeous views of blue Skagit River and Diablo lake higher up you go.


That part consists of many grueling switchbacks, but provides great amount of shade. I hiked this trail in late August when creeks were dry, so the first reliable water source was near the campsites about 3.4 mile up. If hiking in dry season make sure to bring plenty of water. Once you reach the stream you will notice camping sign post on your left, 3 designated campsites will be to your left a little deeper in the woods. If you're camping overnight you can pitch your tent with camping permit attached to it, and go back to the stream, cross it to then continue your hike to the Mountain Lookout. The trail continues up for about 1.1 mile. That part is pretty steep so allow time. The views ahead of you are some of the most stunning views of the Cascades.Once you get to the top you will continue through many switchbacks, for another half mile to the lookout that will be visible in the distance. At that point trail can be vaque. Camping isn't allowed near the Lookout, but you can stay for one of the most beautiful sunsets, with 360 degree views over the Cascades, Lake Diablo on one site, Lake Sourdough on the other. If you're camping below or doing it as day hike make sure to bring flashlight, if you decide to stay for sunset. This is in and out hike but trail also also continues east towards Pierce Mountain.

Hiking Trailhead: 48.717788, -121.145749

Total distance: 9 miles round trip

Elevation gain 5100 feet