Mount Margaret Backcountry

Area Status: Not Cleared
  
 

View of Snow Lake

Explore rugged trails which lead to clear lakes, steep ridges and flowered, mountain slopes. View downed and standing dead trees killed during the 1980 eruption by a sizzling, lateral blast that pummeled the pristine forest, and see the plants and wildlife that have returned. The backcounty offers spectacular views of the crater, blast zone, and log-strewn Spirit Lake, as well as Mount Rainier and Mount Adams.

Trails are narrow, steep in places and can climb over 2,000 feet. Whittier Trail #214 is extremely challenging, very narrow, crosses steep cliffs, and is unsuitable for inexperienced hikers or those uncomfortable with heights.

Camping allowed at eight campsites by advance reservation only. Forest Roads 99 and 26 to Norway Pass Trailhead normally open the end of June through November. Portions of trails are often covered by snow until midsummer. Be prepared to cross snow slopes if you plan an early season visit

At a Glance

Current Conditions:
  • 06/18/2021: Forest Roads 99 and 26 are gated, restricting access from the east side. Both roads normally open toward the end of June.
  • Heavy snow this year is obstructing trails and backcountry areas much later than normal. Most backcountry campsites are still under snow. 
Operational Hours: Day use only unless you purchase a Mount Margaret Backcountry Camping Permit.
Fees
Permit Info: Mount Margaret Backcountry Camping Permit required for overnight camping. Eight campsites to choose from. Obtain online or by phone (877) 444-6777 or if hearing impaired, (866) TDD-6777.
Usage: Medium
Best Season: Summer
Busiest Season: Summer
Restrictions:
  • To protect natural features, pack stock and bicycles are prohibited in the Mount Margaret Backcountry.
  • Fires are not allowed, plan to use a camp stove for cooking.
  • Camping is limited to eight designated campsites only.
  • Maximum group size for camping is four people, 8 people at Ridge Camp.
  • Dispersed Camping is authorized without a permit north of the Green River only.
Closest Towns: Randle, WA, Toutle, WA
Water: Water is often seasonal springs or snow melt and not always available.
Passes: Norway Pass Trailhead: America the Beautiful Pass or Northwest Forest Pass accepted.
Operated By: Forest Service
Information Center:  

General Information

General Notes:

Attached you will find camp maps with current available water sources. Please note, water availablity may change through out the summer at Ridge Camp and camps located along the Boudary Trail.

 Ridge Camp, Snow Camp, Shovel Camp, Obsurity Camp, Bear Camp, Dome Camp and Margaret Camp


Directions:

Access Points:

Eastside access:

Westside access:


Parking:


Activities


Hiking

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Backpacking


Nature Viewing

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https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/giffordpinchot/recreation/recarea/?recid=41618&actid=50