Trip Report    

Kautz Creek

Early spring hike/ snowshoe to 4800 ft. viewpoint

  • Sun, Mar 20, 2022
  • Kautz Creek
  • Day Hiking & Snowshoeing
  • Successful
  • Road suitable for all vehicles
  • The initial bridge and two logs to cross the Kautz are in great shape. I quickly headed up through the woods with still a light dusting of snow, but now that was on top of old, icy trampled snow, making it a bit slippery. I personally did not need poles or micro spikes heading up, but I knew coming down hill on the return I would.

    I quickly made it up to the Pyramid Creek, assessed the intact log crossing covered in deep but very narrow path of snow, put my micro spikes on, extended my poles and carefully crossed without any problem.

    From here, the trail quickly disappears, first due to a confusion of old boot tracks and then the boot tracks also disappear.

    At 4200 ft., I switched to snowshoes and resorted to navigating by map, compass and GPS.



I arrived at the Kautz Creek parking lot at 7:30 AM, the first one there. Snow was forecast for the afternoon, and there had been a dusting of snow the night before. The road was bare, but the trail had a light cover.

My intention all along had been to achieve the “bull nose” viewpoint at 4800 ft., even thought I new it would probably be socked in by the incoming weather.

I stubbornly continued up and northeasterly through the snow and treetops, succeeding in arriving at the “viewpoint”, the view at this time being the tops of the immediate trees, opening out down the sharp slope to the Nisqually Valley below.

With the knowledge that snow was coming, I snapped some photos and decided to follow my prints downhill, although they were not exactly the true trail.

I arrived back at the parking lot about 12:30 PM, just as the regular trickle of tourists and casual strollers were wandering about the lower trail.