Rooster Mountain aka the Ark / 亦稱方舟的公雞山

The online descriptions for Rooster Mountain needed updating. They were useful back when the trail was still in great shape. So people who didn’t wish to deal with the new brush could avoid it. The climb wasn’t a walk in the park. At least not for us.

Kodiak moment on Rooster Mountain
Kodiak moment on Rooster Mountain

See more trip photos here.

Rooster Mountain at a Glance

Access: Taylor River Trailhead
Round Trip: TBD
Elevation Range: 1080′-5339′
Gear: helmet

GPS Track: not available
Dog-Friendly: with guidance

The Preface

We got another late start today. I had hoped to go somewhere by Suiattle River Road. But the road was still inaccessible past mile 12. It’s been this way since we went up to Huckleberry Mountain a year ago. So I looked in the North Bend area for something we haven’t done. 

Rooster Mountain didn’t seem like a popular destination. It also looked like we could have decent views from Google Earth. But I wasn’t able to find recent reports on WTA or NWHikers. The most current information on both sites came from the same person back in June.

See more trip photos here.

Quartz Creek Trail

We drove to the trailhead at the end of Road 5600. There was a gate before the bridge. Since we couldn’t go any farther by car, I knew we were in the right place. We then started walking on Road 5640. Just past the footbridge, the path took on the name of Snoqualmie Lake Trail.

In .4 mile at the junction, we made a left onto Quartz Creek Trail. Going through the old roadbed was very unexciting. But the pups were great entertainers. We continued for the next 1.2 miles and then made a right at the fork. Making a right in another .8 mile officially took us off NF-5640.

Going Through Brushy Terrain

The real fun started at the 3500′ trail bend. The old roadbed continued. But we made a left onto what looked like a path under water and mud. Then right away, we fought through lots of slide alder and stinging nettle. So that part kept us busy for a while.

Alas, we made it through the mess! Afterward, we continued onto the southern slopes. Just when we thought the fun was over, an army of bugs came out of nowhere. Glad I decided to bring enough bug spray for a dozen people. So I could keep away those pesky creatures.

See more trip photos here.

The Final Stretch

My GPS device showed that an “unpaved road” past the alder swatch. So we tried finding it while going up the steep hill. Then I saw what “was” an unpaved road at 3800′. But it was now under the brush and windfalls. So it was barely visible.

We tried using the roadbed to go up to the talus field. But that didn’t get us very far. So our other option was to move straight up the steep hill and onto the ridge. From there, we would traverse the ridgeline to the summit. The second option worked in our favor.

See more trip photos here.

Rooster Mountain Summit Plus Exit

Snow level started at 4800′ and continued to just below the summit. We only had to deal with snow in the last 500′. So it wasn’t bad. That final climb up to the top was on class 2 terrain. It was manageable for the dogs while I guided them.

Views to the south and the west were excellent. But the scenery to the north and the east were just decent. Dog Mountain and Goat Mountain were next doors. The dogs and I took a long break on top. Then afterward, we followed our route and went back down the mountain.

See more trip photos here.

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