Mount Pilchuck with an elevation of 5,344 ft (1,629 m) is a popular hiking destination within Mount Pilchuck State Park and the Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest just 1.5 hours from Seattle. The name "Pilchuck" originates from the Native American word for a red water creek. After the challenging climb to the top, hikers get awarded with fantastic views onto Mount Baker, Mount Rainier, and the Olympics. Mount Pilchuck's summit features a historic fire lookout, now used by hikers. The trail is free from snow between June and October.
A short 5.5 mile trail with elevation gain of 2,300 feet is rather steep and rocky. It can be completed in about 5 hours. The trail head can be reached from the Mount Pilchuck Road off the Mountain Loop Highway. Hikers need a Northwest Forest Pass for parking at the trailhead. The cell reception on the trail is unreliable. Once you get near Granite Falls, beautiful wildflowers will be the prize for a difficult ascent.