Intro to Trail Running: Backcountry Field Trip - Sun Top Lookout

Field trip: Introduction to Trail Running: Backcountry

Intro to Trail Running: Backcountry Field Trip - Sun Top Lookout

Play peek-a-boo with Mt. Rainier from this fire lookout that's part of the White River 50 mile race course.

COVID-19: Learn about our most up-to-date guidance for participants and leaders on our COVID-19 Response page. All participants and leaders must agree to the COVID-19 Code of Conduct before participating in this Mountaineers activity.
  • Moderate/Strenuous
  • Moderate
  • Mileage: 5.0 mi
  • Elevation Gain: 1,360 ft
  • Pace: 3mph

Meet at the Suntop Lookout at 1:30pm.

Google map: 

WTA driving directions:

From Enumclaw, drive Highway 410 to mile post 49 (6.2 miles east of the Greenwater store). Turn right on unmarked Forest Road 73, continue 1.2 miles, and turn left on FS 7315. Drive 5 miles, staying on the main road, to an access gate. This gate should be open. Go through the gate and you'll reach the fire lookout. Park there.

Once you leave Hwy. 410 you will be driving on gravel/dirt roads. The roads are generally in pretty good shape. Most cars should be able to reach the fire lookout if you drive slowly and carefully. Your car will get dusty though!

There is an outhouse at the trailhead.

Northwest Forest Pass or America the Beautiful national  parks pass required.

I'll be staffing this fire lookout for the US Forest Service from noon on Saturday, 6/29/19, until noon on Sunday, 6/30/19. Join me for a scenic run down the trail from the lookout, then back up. Since this is an out-and-back run, I've put an estimated distance in this trip description but we can adjust the distance depending on how we feel.

The Mountaineers website has a winter snowshoe/ski route description so please ignore that. WTA's description is more accurate but we aren't starting at either of the starting points WTA lists.

Come early and have lunch at the picnic tables at the lookout, or stay after the run to soak in the views!


Sun Top Lookout

Required Equipment

Required Equipment

Please wear layers of breathable, technical clothing suitable for outdoor aerobic activities for this course's outdoor activities.

  • Waterproof jacket, hat, buff, gloves, sunglasses; running-specific gaiters recommended
  • Trail running shoes
  • A small day pack suitable for trail running
  • Bring snacks and water
  • Trail running-adapted ten essentials
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