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Trip Report

Kettle Crest North

Eastern Washington

Trip Report By

Hiked Jul 4, 2019

Type of Hike


Trail Conditions

Obstacles on trail:
    Trees down across trail,
    Muddy or wet trail,
    Overgrown in places.


Road suitable for all vehicles


No bugs


Snow free

Started on highway 20 with the intent of hitting the north terminus of the route at Boulder Creek TH before flipping a U-ie and completing the out-n-back...

Highway 20 to Old Stage Trail just north of Copper Butte

Trail is in good condition. Wide, open, easily followed and, if I remember correctly, devoid of any blow downs. I think there is a few field sections here and those can be knee-high overgrown with nice flowers and ground squirrels to keep you company. Expect lots of dew in the mornings at least for now, cuz it will soak you from the knee down. I did see two trail cams attached to trees, some sort of research project, I'd guess...If a bare bottom shows up on one, it not mine... Just sayin...

I took note of water stops along the way, both natural and rancher set-ups. I marked two between highway 20 and Copper in July. Don't know what they'll look like in late summer or early fall. I did hear a creek west of the switchbacks above Sherman Trails that I did not use and it turns out there is a cattle wallow higher up...This might not be the drainage, but it was close enough for me to pass...  It's probably highly recommended to filter all water, just don't ask me if I did...

One section of trail between Wapatoosie Mt and Scar Mt that didn't match my intel; I followed an old,very secondary trail when things didn't seem to be jiving. Basically I inadvertently a cut a switchback...Take note, on my return I found the actual, well defined trail a little further SW, down trail 17, than I expect.

Old Stage Trail to Boulder Creek

Kinda different feel. The trail can go from wide open to overgrown in sections...Blow downs, yes. Climb over, climb under, go around, all the above. That said, there's nothing too technical or difficult, just always something. Wildflowers abundance and sections that can be overgrown, knee to waist high. Might slow travel a bit to be sure proper footing is achieved.

I way-pointed at least eight different water sources in this stretch. I carried three 22oz hand helds and as long as I upped at every stop I did alright.

Note for the water stops: I don't know what the activity level of these "springs" will be later in the year. Also if it's hot out, and the back half of this route is an old, exposed burn, you may go through more...

Anyway it was a heck of a trip, despite the thunder, and lighting at night...I'll save that story for later...

See you all next time!