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Fir Mountain

Eastern Washington

Location

Eastern Washington -- Okanogan Highlands/Kettle River Range
View map below

Length

5.2 miles, roundtrip

Elevation

Gain: 2174 ft.
Highest Point: 5674 ft.

Rating

2.50 out of 5

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Parking Pass/Entry Fee

None
 
 

The trail on Fir Mountain can be hard to follow at times, but persistent route-finders are rewarded with a 2 mile, steep trail through open pine forest to views from a former fire lookout site.

In late summer, berries for snacking along the way abound, and green wet areas full of flowers make for gorgeous photos. If you're watchful, you may be rewarded with some glimpses of wildlife, too.

In winter, the hike is a steep march through forest and quiet drifts of snow. The hardest part about the winter route may be finding enough room to park the car, but as a last resort, use the Sweat Creek parking lot, only a short walk across Highway 20 from the trailhead.

The winter trail immediately begins its steady march up the steep slope. While the initial forest is second-growth and largely uninteresting, it doesn't take long for the trees to open up and the views to improve. At the same time, it's easy to see that this trail is a wildlife haven, as evidenced by the numerous tracks crisscrossing the trail.

Watch for sawed trees, the tell-tale sign of the correct trail corridor, so as not to be led astray by the game trails. At the windswept summit, former site of a lookout tower, the views are fantastic in all directions. Return via the same route.

 

Fir Mountain

Map & Directions

Trailhead
Co-ordinates: 48.6753, -118.8995 Open map in new window

Trailhead

Eastern Washington -- Okanogan Highlands/Kettle River Range

Fir Mountain (#320)

Colville National Forest, Tonasket Ranger District

See weather forecast

Guidebooks & Maps

Day Hiking: Eastern Washington (Rich Landers & Craig Romano; Mountaineers Books)

Best Hikes with Dogs: Inland Northwest (Craig Romano & Alan L. Bauer; Mountaineers Books)

USGS Wauconda Summit

Getting There

The parking lot for this hike is near the Sweat Creek Picnic Area.

From Spokane, take Highway 395 north through Colville and Kettle Falls. Cross the bridge over the Columbia, then turn left on Highway 20. Continue over Sherman Pass through Republic, remaining on Highway 20. Approximately 8 miles beyond Republic, turn left on FS 31 across the road from the Sweat Creek Picnic Area. The TH is on the right in approximately a half mile; limited parking on the left.

There is a post on your right marking the start of the trail. There may be some parking nearer to the trail, but the road isn't the widest and plenty of firewood laden pickups come roaring down this road, so shoulder park at your own risk.

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

None
 

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Fir Mountain

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