- Elevation: 2,100 feet
- Distance: 7.5 miles RT
- Washington Discover Pass required at trailhead
Hamilton Mountain is on the Washington side of the Gorge. You need to purchase either a Discover Pass ($30 annually) or purchase a daily pass for $10. If you purchase the Discover Pass, it's good for Washington State parks. We opted to buy the day pass as this is the only time in 2 years where we wanted to hike somewhere that required it. It's a moderate climb in the beginning and you come across waterfalls about a mile in. Head down to the right for views of Hardy Falls. Back the way you came and continue on the trail. Take the quick side-trail to the Pool of Winds. Get a quick picture (and a quick spray shower) of the falls and head back down to the bridge. You can climb a little bit on the rocks here. Continue on the trail until you hit an intersection. I recommend staying right and climbing the steep switch backs to the top of the mountain. Before you reach the top there will be several spots that offer great views looking east and west down the Columbia River. The summit is somewhat anti-climactic. We ate our snacks here but I think it'd be better to continue down the other (north) side of the mountain until you hit a large patch of land that flattens out. There is a great view of Table Mountain and the OG/natural Bridge of the Gods. Aaron explained to me that it was formed by a massive landslide. On a clear day, there are also views of Mt. Adams, Mt. St Helens, and Mt. Hood. I prefer the views from Dog Mountain personally. Continue down the gravel road and follow signs back to the main trail. You'll pass the waterfalls one more time and be back at your car before you know it.
I moved to the Pacific Northwest in August of 2012. I quickly identified myself as a hiker. I want to document my experiences so that I can refer to them for myself and others to provide the best hiking experience. I also hope to learn more about hiking from others comments and recommendations.