Little stands between you and the east side of Mt. Hood when hiking along this ridge top trail, which offers views of the Cascades from Three Sisters to Mt. Rainier. In fact, the only thing obscuring your view along this trail are trees that occasionally give way to scattered rock outcroppings, which afford grand views of a broad spectrum of Cascade peaks.
The path along this ridge top is called Gunsight Butte Trail, and it parallels the western border of the Badger Creek Wilderness. Much of the trail traverses the east side of the ridge, never dropping far from the ridge's spine. A couple of boulder strew slopes are crossed along this path's 5.1 miles, lying between the trailhead, located at the intersection of road 3550 and 4891, and the trail's intersection with the Gumjuwac Trail.
|First boulder strewn slope to traverse|
|Second rocky slope|
The trail begins in a hemlock and fir forest, where the trees are fairly thick. The first boulder slope is not far from the trailhead, and it allows the hiker to look east toward Badger Butte and down to road 3550, which is never far from the trail. As the trail climbs, the forest becomes more sparse. Here, you begin to make out the outline of Mt. Hood through the trees.
A short climb off the trail, up the first open, rocky butte, allows a view of nearby Mt. Hood and Mt. Jefferson to the South. Further along the trail, the ridge top opens to a cluster of jagged boulders. Here,views are much more expansive than the first view, extending along the Cascades from Central Oregon to Central Washington.
|First viewpoint south to Mt. Jefferson|
|Looking south and Badger Lake|
|Gunsight Butte through the trees|
|Looking North from second viewpoint toward the |
Hood River Valley, Mt. Adams and Mt. Rainier