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Big Butte | August 2014

K7NIT's picture
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Big Butte is a near drive-up (in an SUV - the higher clearance is necessary) in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest that you could do in a passenger car with a bit more hiking (less than 2 miles each way on a road). From Portland, take I-84 to Cascade Locks and cross the river on the Bridge of the Gods (toll). Or take Washington 14 out from Vancouver past the Bridge of the Gods, through Stevenson and continue east on 14 to turn north towards Carson about four miles past Stevenson. After 12.3 miles on this Wind River Highway you will turn right onto NF-3080 or Hollis Creek Road (paved).

Take this paved forest road about 6.8 miles to a sharp unmarked left turn. This is where you will want to park if you are in a passenger car. Here's where a GPS giving you turn by turn directions may be useful. Follow the main track of this narrow forest road about 1.8 miles to 45.87823 -121.94322. This road is a bit rough and you may wish you didn't care about paint altering branches if you drove. There should be a spot big enough to turn around near this GPS waypoint where you can park off the road - it's the only spot wide enough that we saw. The summit is an easy hike about 0.2 miles up the ridge through the woods from here (GPS very useful to find the way up - and back).