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Scorpion Mountain via Johnson Ridge

Central Cascades

Location

Central Cascades -- Stevens Pass - West
View map below

Length

8.6 miles, roundtrip

Elevation

Gain: 2500 ft.
Highest Point: 5540 ft.

Rating

4.59 out of 5

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Parking Pass/Entry Fee

None
 
 

Scorpion Mountain offers a 360-degree view of the Central Cascades, and the huckleberries and blueberries make this a much underrated fall hike.

Start your hike from the Johnson Ridge Trail. Continue through the forest for pleasant walking along a gentle, undulating ridge. The trail climbs to Sunrise Mountain in about 2 miles: this is where the views begin. Looking north, you can see Glacier Peak, Monte Cristo peaks, and much more.

Continue for about another two miles past Sunrise Mountain; the trail drops before heading up to Scorpion Mountain.

As you approach Scorpion, the ridge narrows and the views become impeccable as peaks on all side of you pop up. 3.5 miles from the trailhead, and 1.5 from Sunrise Mountain, enter indescribable alpine meadows with resplendent wildflowers.

Make your way out of the meadows back into the shade of the trees, climbing steeply up the ridgecrest before dropping back into the meadows that skirt the peak of Scorpion.

At an unmarked junction, head left, climbing the last remaining feet of elevation where 360 degree views await at 5540 foot Scorpion Mountain. You may want to bring out your map to pick out all the summits in view. To the east, look for Poet Ridge, Grizzly Mountain, Mount McCausland, and the Chiwaukums. To the south are Captain Point, Fernow, Daniel, Hinman, and Cathedral Rock. North of you stand Evergreen, Sloan, Benchmark, and Fortune, while to the west lie Baring, Spire, Troublesome, and Rainer.

Extending your trip

From the top of Scorpion, sparkling Joan Lake lies below, enticing you to visit. Returning to the unmarked junction, turn left and drop a steep 500 feet of elevation in just a half mile. The peaceful lake will have you wishing you could stay forever. Adding this detour will make it a 10 mile round trip hike.

 

Scorpion Mountain via Johnson Ridge

Map & Directions

Trailhead
Co-ordinates: 47.7966, -121.2622 Open map in new window

Trailhead

Central Cascades -- Stevens Pass - West

Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest, Skykomish Ranger District

See weather forecast

Guidebooks & Maps

Day Hiking: Central Cascades (Romano & Bauer - Mountaineers Books)

Green Trails Monte Cristo No. 143

Benchmark Mtn No. 144

Getting There

From Monroe, head east on US-2 for 33 miles to the town of Skykomish. Continue less than a mile, then turn left on Beckler Road (Forest Road 65). Drive 6.9 miles to the end of pavement. At the four-way intersection, make a sharp right turn onto NF-6520. In 2.7 miles stay left at an unmarked junction, continuing another 4.1 miles to the trailhead at road’s end. There is room for 6 to 8 vehicles, and some shoulder parking along the road. There are no amenities.

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

None
 

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Scorpion Mountain via Johnson Ridge

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