The Ark by Dog Mountain via Quartz Creek / 方舟山

  • Reading time:7 mins read

The Ark, aka Rooster Mountain, joins Dog Mountain and Goat Mountain via Peak 4980. It perches above Quartz Creek, which offers the most direct route. Meanwhile, it views many notable high points above Middle Fork Snoqualmie River Valley.

Kodak moment on Rooster Mountain
Kodak moment on Rooster Mountain

See more trip photos here.

The Ark (Rooster Mountain) at a Glance

Access: Snoqualmie Lake Trailhead
Round Trip: TBD
Elevation Range: 1080′-5339′
Gear: helmet
GPS Track: not available
Dog-Friendly: with guidance

The Preface

The Ark (Rooster Mountain) didn’t look as popular as those along Interstate 90. Because of so, the information I found could use some updating. People would now need to find a better way around the new brush.

The climb wasn’t a walk in the park, at least not for us. As it turned out, the trail was no longer in decent shape, and it was hard to follow. But we relied on the most current info on and written in June by the same person.

See more trip photos here.

A Late Start

I had hoped to go somewhere along Suiattle River Road. But the road was still inaccessible past mile 12. Ever since we went up to Huckleberry Mountain last year. So I looked in the North Bend area for something new. 

The peak had great views from what I could see on Google Earth. So I was excited, not knowing we’d end up contending with a type 2 approach.

See more trip photos here.

Quartz Creek Trail

We drove to the trailhead at the end of Road 5600 with a gate before the bridge. Since we couldn’t go farther by car, I knew we were in the right place. Soon, we were on Road 5640 past the footbridge, which was Snoqualmie Lake Trail.

In half a mile, we turned left onto Quartz Creek Trail. The old roadbed wasn’t too unexciting, but the pups were entertaining. Then we turned right after 1.2 miles and went another .8 mile before leaving NF-5640.

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Through Brushy Terrain

The real fun started at the 3500′ switchback. The old roadbed continued uphill, but we veered left onto a path under water and mud. Immediately, we dove into lots of slide alder and stinging nettle, which kept us busy for a while.

Alas, we made it through the mess onto the south slopes. When we thought the fun was over, an army of bugs emerged. Glad I decided to bring enough bug spray for a dozen people to keep away those pesky insects.

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The Final Stretch

My GPS showed an “unpaved road” past the alder swath. So we looked for it through the steep hill before stumbling upon the said path at 3800′. But it was now under massive brush and windfalls and barely recognizable.

We tried going through the talus field on the roadbed but didn’t get very far. So our other option was to go straight up and make a beeline for the ridge. From there, we would traverse the crest to the top.

See more trip photos here.

Rooster Mountain Summit Plus Exit

Snow appeared at 4800′ and stopped just below the summit. We only had to walk over the snow in the last 500′, so it wasn’t too bad. That final bit was on class 2 terrain and feasible for the dogs as I guided them.

Views to the south and west were excellent, but ok to the north and east. Dog Mountain, Goat Mountain, Paperboy, and Boomerang were next door. We took a long break on top before retracing to go down the mountain.

See more trip photos here.

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