Alpine Lookout –Wallow in good views and a chance to see a mountain goat or two

Quick Facts:
Location: Stevens Pass-Lake Wenatchee region
Land Agency: Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest
Round Trip: 10.0 miles
Elevation Gain: 2,600 feet
Contact: Wenatchee River Ranger District (Leavenworth): Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest 
Green Trails Map: Wenatchee Lake- No. 145
Recommended Guidebook: Day Hiking Central Cascades (Mountaineers Book)
Notes: NW Forest Pass or Interagency Pass Required.
Several miles of trails on this hike are also open to mountain bikes and motorcycles but use is light.

Access: From Everett head east on US 2. Just past the Nason Creek Rest Area, turn left onto unsigned and easy to miss FR 6910. Follow this main road forr 4.5 miles avoiding side spurs. Then bear right onto a narrow, brushy somewhat rough road and reach the trailhead in .2 mile.

Good to Know: Kid-friendly, dog-friendly, wildflowers, historic fire lookout, mountain goat habitat, practice Leave No Trace Principles 

Perched on a 6,237-feet knob on the eastern end of the imposing Nason Ridge, Alpine Lookout offers stunning jaw-slacking views. From the historic fire lookout, stare straight down at sparkling Lake Wenatchee. Then turn your gaze outward to snowy-volcano Glacier Peak and hundreds of other snowcapped and craggy peaks flanking it. And this isn’t enough to get your hiking boots in gear; the ridge leading up to the lookout is lined with dazzling wildflowers throughout the summer.

While much of the hike is pleasant going, the first 1.6 miles is quite steep. Starting on the Round Mountain Trail, immediately begin climbing. After hiking through a few pocket meadows reach the Nason Ridge Trail. Now turn left and begin walking along the high crest of Nason Ridge skirting the 5,700-foot summit of Round Mountain.

Traverse open meadows providing splendid viewing west along the high ridge and south to the impressive Chiwaukums. Undulating between forest and meadow the trail climbs and drops passing a handful of saddles and knolls. At 4.5 miles come to rocky Ninemile Saddle embraced by overhanging and balancing rocks.
Then climb once again bearing right onto a spur trail to the Alpine Lookout. Built in 1936, it’s one of only a handful of lookouts still staffed in the Cascades. A logical spot for a lookout, the views are wide-ranging from this outpost. Begin doing a 360 and start rattling off all of the names of the peaks in view—Glacier, Rainier, Stuart, Daniel, Sloan, Buck—the list goes on!

For a detailed description of this hike and many, many more in the Lake Wenatchee Leavenworth area, pick up a copy of my Day Hiking Central Cascades book today!

125 hikes from Everett to Wenatchee!

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