Haystack Mountain by Mount Persis via Skykomish River / 草垛山

  • Reading time:10 mins read

Haystack Mountain by Mount Persis and Ten-Four Mountain perches above Skykomish River. Even with its short stature, the summit offers a near-sweeping view of the valley. Because of land ownership, the way to reach the top is now via Big Eddy Park by the trestle.

Haystack Mountain looming above
Haystack Mountain looming above

See more trip photos here.

Haystack Mountain at a Glance

Access: Big Eddy Park (access info)
Round Trip: 9 miles
Elevation Range: 240′-2715′
Gear: microspikes, snowshoes
Route Info: Chandler Haberlack, Nancyann
GPS Track: available
Dog-Friendly: on the road

North Cascades – Chelan Permit

May 27, 2021: I received the below message in an email from Weyerhaeuser regarding the purchasing of permits:

This email is to notify you that Weyerhaeuser is currently under contract to sell the North Cascades – Chelan Recreational Permit Area to Hampton Resources, a forest products company, in July of 2021.

Due to the pending change in ownership, Weyerhaeuser will not be offering 2021-22 recreational permits for North Cascades-Chelan permit area on our website.

Weyerhaeuser Recreation

Haystack Mountain

The SummitPost entry no longer reflects current access restrictions. The quickest way used to start from NF-6200 past Proctor Creek. But trying to go that way now would add an extra four miles each way from Highway 2.

We spent the bulk of our time on the road. But not before having to cross the railroad tracks to the south. Then we went through a section of brambles up to the roadway at 200′ above. A few yards east was a fork in the road.

Trestle over Skykomish River
Trestle over Skykomish River

See more trip photos here.

Walking the Road

The roadway was in great shape, presuming due to the number of logging trucks that go through here. A few spur paths seemed to lead to nowhere, and some of them had debris piles marking the road’s end.

We walked a quarter of a mile west before slowly losing elevation. So at one mile in from the car, we were back at the same altitude. Then the road stayed flat for another mile or so.

Duffey Creek
Duffey Creek

See more trip photos here.

Logging Terrain

The amount of logging debris on the hillsides was devastating. It’s always sad to see the aftermath of deforestation. Google satellite view also showed clearcutting up to a few hundred feet below the top.

It’s been cloudy with spotty views since we left the car. Then we slowly lost sight of Haystack Mountain when we reached its north side. Shortly past Duffey Creek, we turned left at the next fork onto the steep road.

A misty valley
A misty valley

See more trip photos here.

Duffey Creek Basin

We found continuous snow at 1400′, where recent tire marks had ended. Then I put on snowshoes after gaining another 200′ altitude. Soon, the clouds cleared with a direct view of today’s goal.

Later in the upper basin, we crossed Duffey Creek to the east. Then we reached the 2100′ saddle at 2.8 miles up from the junction back at 500′. The view to Skykomish River Valley from the pass was misty.

A break in the clouds
A break in the clouds

See more trip photos here.

Haystack Mountain South Route

From there, we turned north and continued to carve out a path. Meanwhile, lower Mount Persis behind us slowly appeared. Then minutes later, we reached the south slopes as the road rounded the ridge.

The road later ended north of Haystack Mountain. But I’ve had enough of it for today, and so we dove into the trees and went up to the east ridge. Then we walked a short distance west up to the top.

Haystack Mountain south route
Haystack Mountain south route

See more trip photos here.

Haystack Mountain Summit

On a clear day, the striking view of Mount Persis would be to the direct southeast. But only a fraction of Mount Index would be visible. We had partial views out to the east earlier on the east ridge.

The forested northern half of the summit didn’t give much to see. But I was happier about not being in the clouds! We had a pleasant visit in the mild wind and the warm temperatures.

Mount Persis in the mist
Mount Persis in the mist

See more trip photos here.

Outro

Any reasonable person would’ve gone back the way they came. But I wanted to bypass the road on the way out. So we dropped onto the northwest side, which I would only try going this way with the snow.

It wasn’t pleasant to squeeze through the second-growth, so it’s not a way I’d recommend. Later we caught the end of a road at 1200′. Then it led us down to the fork above the brambles we went through earlier.

Back to the trestle below
Back to the trestle below

See more trip photos here.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. james kirk

    this area is now closed due to access restrictions

    1. onehikeaweek

      No problem! To obtain a recreation permit, check out Weyerhaeuser’s website for more information. I’ve also included a link in my post. Happy hiking!

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