Hiking Dog Mountain

Dog Mountain, Skamania County, WA: About 37 years ago (6/7/1970) Margo and I hiked the Dog Mountain trail following the directions in Don and Roberta Lowe’s book (100 Oregon Hiking Trails)… OK, the trail is not in Oregon but the trail was in the book. Margo jotted a note on the margin of the page… “it’s really STEEP”… If anything, the trail is steeper now.

Parking at the trail head is by fee and a pay station is available. About 15 cars were in the parking area. Vault toilets are available. My son, Chris, and I were determined to reach the top.

The trail starts steep and stays steep. Chris and I didn’t make it to the top, we stopped at a former fire lookout, but we were close enough to see the top. A strong breeze was blowing. The balsamroot isn’t quite at its peak and the lupine is just starting to bloom.

We recommend good hiking boots as the trail is steep with fine gravel… slippery for flat soled tennis shoes. A walking stick is also a good idea… And take drinking water.

trail sign
Trail signs Dog Mountain 5/9/2007 Skamania County WA

At 0.5 miles the trail divides into “more difficult” and “less difficult” routes… a difficult decision… not… we took the “less difficult” trail. Poison oak literally lines the trail at the lower elevations so keep hands and elbows tucked in and don’t leave the trail.

We thought it odd that people we met on the trail talked more about elevation than miles (as in… you have a thousand feet to the top)… but perhaps when the physical limitation is elevation it makes sense. We’re not saying the mountain is high but we did see an airplane pass below us.

We enjoyed the day.


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