A Cold Hike To The Top of Dog Mountain

Dog Mountain isn't particularly high, but its location makes it very popular with the sailing community. Steve and Theresa hike up to check out the stunning views.

Hidden on Dog Mountain

Recently a couple of us got together for a ‘guys’ weekend and ended up finding the spectacular Cathedral Falls. I knew this was something that I wanted to share with Theresa, so we came back to the area for our own weekend. I knew she would be as excited about the falls as I was, but I wasn’t counting on us stumbling over stunning views of Riffe Lake from the summit of Dog Mountain.

Dog Mountain isn’t particularly high (my topo maps show a height of 2133’) but it is right on the east edge of Riffe Lake and it has a large flat meadow that borders the shoreline. This combination makes it very popular with the hang gliding and paragliding groups. In addition to the lake, you have a great view of Glenoma Valley to the north.

Dog Mountain
Dog Mountain is a popular launch site for paragliders.

We hiked up the dirt track whose entrance is locked with a gate. This is private land but the owners make it accessible to members of the Cloudbase Country Club. Apparently, if you pay your fees and sign waivers you get a key to the gate. We’d rather walk. For those of you who might be interested in membership, you can find information here.

Support

Our mission is a labor of love, but it does come with overhead. If you’d like to support our efforts we’d certainly appreciate it. Currently, we’re actively participating in the following field research:

  • COASST Beached Bird Surveys
  • Wild and Scenic River Project

Thank you.

advertisement

Member of the following

We are the learned society for geography and geographers.
as-seal-gr
Working to provide opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts to make a difference as they play in the outdoors.
coasst-logo
Working to translate long-term monitoring into effective marine conservation solutions.
Sea Grant Washington
Provide integrated research, communication, and education to coastal communities that lead to the responsible use of the nation’s oceans.

Latest Instagram

Theresa is looking downstream at Murhat Falls. This waterfall is easy to drive to and an easy hike in the Olympic National Forest. ...

Skate Creek runs alongside Forest Road 52 in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest. This was just one of the many photographic sites that can be accessed from the road. ...

Murhut Falls and its pool are nestled in the Olympic National Forest, not far from Dosewallips State Park. ...

Winter storm making landfall just south of Cape Flattery. This part of the Pacific Northwest can see some powerful storms. ...

An unnamed creek and a small waterfall that you can find along the Steam Donkey Loop trail, which starts within the Dosewallips State Park of Washington ...

Footsteps and a sunset over the Pacific Ocean. ...

Early morning sunshine filtered through the trees and reflected off the upper portion of Murhut waterfall ...

Theresa sitting under Murhut Falls, enjoying the beauty of the forest. ...

Found this small dam in the hills behind our camp on Hood Canal. At one time, it appears to have been used by a homestead to hold water during the summer months. #washingtonstateparks ...

A photographer takes a photo and becomes the subject himself. ...

“How We Survived a Slight Derailment on Tower Rock” was published on our website. You'll find a gallery of all photographs in the article towards the bottom of the page. I'd love to hear your thoughts or comments. You can find our URL in the bio. ...

Low tide on Crescent Bay and reflections in the pools left behind. ...

Creepy Night in Mossyrock

We decided to try and beat any ‘weekend’ camping crowds as there’s been a noticeable uptick in off-season camping this year. I needed to be able to work from the campsite so that meant picking a spot that had cellular connectivity. So we decided to use Tacoma Powers’ Mossyrock Campgrounds as our basecamp.

Pulling in on Thursday afternoon, I had a moment when I thought that perhaps I had made a terrible mistake. There was absolutely no one in the campground. The gate had been opened and checking one of the sites there was water and power so we went ahead a chose a site. The funny thing was that we’ve never been confronted with so many options and we had a hard time choosing that ‘one perfect spot.

I felt sure we’d have company before the sunset. That was not the case. It was wonderful sitting around the fire watching the mist form over the lake and hillsides, but as the evening wore on, it got decidedly creepy. I had to laugh at my reaction. It’s been some time since I’ve been spooked while camping!

all article photographs

Return to Cathedral Falls

As mentioned earlier, this was my second trip out to the falls, and I wrote about it here. What was different this time was the colder temperatures and snow on the ground. It gave everything quite a different feel. Even the drive up to the trailhead was much more gnarly. Bigger rocks had come down since last time, a few trees, snow patches on the trail, and a washout tree combination that had you committed to driving right on the cliff edge! Plenty of adventure even before you hit the trail.

We were joined by some friends, Erin and Connally, who were interested in seeing the falls. Due to our day jobs, we had all received our COVID-19 vaccinations so felt comfortable hiking together.

Once on the trail, we quickly made our way to falls and everyone’s jaw dropped; mine included. If you look at my previous articles photos you’ll see that the falls actually drop on a large granite boulder. Cool. This time it was very cool. That boulder was completely encased in layers of ice. It made for some interesting photos and a lot of excited conversation.

I’m already contemplating returning in the spring to see what the falls will look like with the spring melt coming over the edge.

Please share this:

More to explore

Whidbey Island
Journal

Cruising Whidbey Island

Stepping on to Whidbey Island is to follow in the steps of Capt. Vancouver and Lt. Puget. The island itself is named after the Sailing Master Joseph Whidbey.

Read More »
Port Gamble Fire Station
Journal

How Did Port Gamble Stay Off The Radar?

Looking for a new adventure? Try taking a right instead of left sometime. In our case, we found a close, quaint little community that for practical purposes have been doing their best to hide from us.

Read More »

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.