Day Hike - West Tiger Mountain No. 3 Cable Line


Day Hike - West Tiger Mountain No. 3 Cable Line

T'day morning brisk close-in hike up Cable Line, down W Tiger 3. Early start to be done before 1pm or noon, depending on group speed and whether we add W Tiger #2, which has better views if clear or partial overcast day

  • Strenuous, Moderate/Strenuous
  • Challenging
  • Mileage: 4.7 mi
  • Elevation Gain: 2,200 ft
  • High Point Elevation: 2,525 ft

We'll meet outside the white gate to the road that leads to parking for Tradition Plateau parking. (No Discover Pass required here outside the gate). The Cable Line trail is just a little ways (1/5 mile?) east of that gate, and that's where we'll meet, at the trailhead, ready to go at 8 AM.  Early start both so people can get ready for holiday dining, but also to get easy parking because the parking along the road can get full near the trailhead on holidays and weekends, especially if it's sunny.

It's often quite noisy there due to I-90 noise (though maybe not so much on a holiday morning). If it's noisy, when everyone arrives, we'll hike up a little ways to get away from the noise for self-intros, etc. The fact that it's a noisy place is an additional reason to please be on time.

Recommendations on vehicle safety: While break-ins can happen anywhere along this road, I think they're more likely in the parking area at the west end of the road, just before the gate, where cars pull in park rather than parallel park -- because this parking area is a bit more hidden from the road. So I wouldn't park there. No matter where you park, don't leave anything possibly remotely valuable looking visible in your car.

Goal: Get out, get fresh air and stretch legs, and have plenty of time to help prepare dinner, or fix whatever you're taking to your friends' or family's. This should work if, as for me, the dinner starts late afternoon and you're just helping or fixing a simple thing to take to friends not far away. Still, keep in mind that sometimes things happen on these trips so finish and return is rarely but significantly later than planned. Highly unlikely, especially for this hike, but  a possibility.

On Cable Line ascent, 2,100' elevation gain in 1.5 miles. It's pretty steep in places. Assuming we have fairly dry conditions, if you don't feel reasonably confident of making this ascent in around or under 1 hour 30 minutes, this may not be the hike for you. If you know you can hike Cable Line at and even faster speed and you still care to join us, consider bringing some extra weight, say full water containers, to make it more of a conditioner and so you can be more patient with the rest of us. Due to the steepness and big steps in places, I prefer to only ascend this trail. We'll descend via longer W Tiger #3 Trail.

If trail is snowy or muddy, then we'll all probably be somewhat slower.

We will hike if it's raining. May cancel if the forecast calls for very strong winds, hard rain, lightning, or snow or ice.

W Tiger NOAA 7-day forecast (Note this forecast is for 2800' elevation, so 300 feet higher than W Tiger 3's highest point.)

If everyone in the group wants to saunter over from W. Tiger 3 to W T #2 summit, we can do that, but anyone in the group will have veto power to decline that option, if they feel short of time, tired, or just don't want to hike thru a clear cut, though higher W Tiger 2 does offer better views now. Adding W Tiger #2 adds about 1.5 miles round trip, and about 350' additional gain, plus some descent.

We will stop at all junctions for major trails. We'll ignore the smaller, faint, side trails going off to east and west ascending Cable Line, but we'll stop where it intersects with W Tiger 3 trail before heading to summit. Same descending -- stop at junctions.  (There are a few, not many.) If you do distance yourself from group, do so with at least 1 other person.  On Cable Line, there are both side trails giving a different option for the Cable Line route, and intersections with other trails going someplace else. So if you're not familiar with Cable Line, please stick on the main trail or do the side options with someone who knows the route.

Due to the strenuous nature of this hike and the short time before it occurs, Mountaineers or friends of Mountaineers participating on this hike only, please.


West Tiger Mountain No. 3 Cable Line

Required Equipment

Required Equipment

The Ten Essentials

  • boots/footwear with good tread
  • spikes if there's any snow or ice
  • poles recommended, especially if slippery conditions or if your knees object to descents
  • Navigation
  • Headlamp
  • Sun protection
  • First aid
  • Knife
  • Fire
  • Shelter
  • Extra food
  • Extra water
  • Extra clothes
Trip Reports