Trip Report    

Backpack - Loowit Trail

We returned last night from a backpack trip of the Loowit Trail which circumnavigates the 33 miles around the base of Mt St Helens.

  • Road suitable for all vehicles
  • The trail was in fantastic condition with practically no snow other than a very small snowfield that was no issue. There was one river to ford but it was easy. There were a few places where fixed ropes were in place to use as a hand line to make it easier getting in and out of the steep ravines.  Overall a fantastic challenging route with ever changing scenery.



We traveled 20 miles over the first two days and 13 miles on the third remaining day in a clockwise direction starting and ending at Climbers Bivouac.  The first  night we camped at the South Fork Toutle River and the second night just below Windy Pass on the south side.  This trail had it all…tall peaks, volcano views, deep forested valleys, boulder fields, meadows, wildflowers, abundant beargrass in bloom, deep ravines, elk, goats and the huge trek through the blast zone that the Loowit is so well known for.  Often times the trail was very rugged and rocky, especially in the deep ravines but that’s another known characteristic of the Loowit.  Water management was always top priority and we were fine but you have to pay attention because the sources are few and far between and often times it was quite warm.  On the second day we took a nice side trip to Loowit Falls which added about a mile to the trip but it was worth it.  Overall, a fantastic trip in great conditions with a great group all of whom were well qualified for the challenge.