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Suntop Lookout

Mount Rainier Area


Mount Rainier Area -- Chinook Pass - Hwy 410
View map below


2.1 miles, roundtrip


Gain: 1100 ft.
Highest Point: 5400 ft.


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Parking Pass/Entry Fee

Northwest Forest Pass

Reaching the summit of Suntop can require considerable energy, or it can be a simple short walk, but the views of Mount Rainier and the White River valley below are worth it any way you slice it. Hike either 16 miles or just two, depending on which trail you use.

When the gate on this access road is open, it's possible to drive to the summit of Suntop, but hiking is much more enjoyable.

The shorter approach allows hikers to switchback up from the parking area just one mile to the summit, crossing Forest Road 73 on the way.

This crossing can be confusing, so note that at it, the trail to the left (south) heads through the forest, along a beautiful ridge and back down to the valley trailhead for the longer route to Suntop. The trail to the right (north) heads to the lookout. This makes for a short, sweet little hike, but be sure to keep a close eye on your map, since signage can be confusing here.

For the longer hike, start on level ground, hiking through old-growth timber, gradually climbing before crossing road 7160310 at the first mile point. Climb into an old tree harvest unit, then join up with Forest Road 7160 at mile 2.4 and follow it to the left. Switchback for 0.1 miles to the trail on the right.

Continue on to a junction with Doe Falls Trail at mile 2.5 and cross Buck Creek at mile 3.7. Climb to the ridge top and follow it to Forest Road 7315 at mile 7.5.

To the left is the junction with spur Forest Road 7315510. Continue to hike from the northwest to the lookout. From this point, the trail may be hard to follow.

At mile four, cross Forest Road 7315510 and continue to climb to the lookout. Once you reach it, enjoy a commanding panoramic view of the area. On a clear day the view is superb, with Mount Rainier, the central Cascades, Olympic Mountains and Mount Baker. Total mileage for this route is 16.6 miles and 2800 feet of elevation gain. The elevation and mileage for the shorter route is listed in this hiking guide entry.


Suntop Lookout

Map & Directions

Co-ordinates: 47.0088, -121.5326 Open map in new window


Mount Rainier Area -- Chinook Pass - Hwy 410

Suntop Trail (#1183)

Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest, Snoqualmie Ranger District

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Getting There

For the shorter hike, drive Highway 410 to mile post 49 (6.2 miles east of the Greenwater store). Turn right on unmarked Forest Road 73, continue 1.2 miles, and turn left on FS 7315. Drive 5 miles, staying on the main road, to an access gate. Just before the gate, the trailhead for trail 1183 is on the left. The trail switchbacks .5 miles to the lookout. If open, the gate will allow you to drive around to the lookout.

The trailhead for the longer hike can be found by following these directions. Drive east on State Highway 410 from Enumclaw 29.9 miles to Buck Creek Road (Forest Service road 7160). Turn right (east) onto Forest Service road 7160 and follow it 0.3 mile to Forest Service road 7160. Turn left (south) onto Forest Service road 7160210 and follow it 0.8 mile to trailhead.

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

Northwest Forest Pass

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Suntop Lookout

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