Gifford Pinchot National Forest
Gifford Pinchot National Forest covers 1.32 million acres of Southwestern Washington State, reaching from the western slopes of the Cascade Mountains to Mount Rainier National Park and the Columbia River. Encompassing old-growth forests, vast wildflower blooms, pristine lakes, and many mountains, this forest is an excellent outdoor adventure destination. Punctuating the landscape is the sky-high peak of Mount Adams, the second-tallest mountain in the state behind Mount Rainier. Epic volcanic peaks spread out throughout the forest, including eruptive Mount Saint Helens and the 110,000-acre Mount Saint Helens National Monument. The park captures the scenery that defines southern Washington, from magnificent ancient trees (including Big Tree, one of the world’s largest Ponderosas) to glaciated volcanic peaks.
Gifford Pinchot National Forest was established on July 1, 1908, making it one of the oldest national forests in the United States. It was included as part of the Mount Rainier Forest Reserve in 1897 and set aside as the Columbia National Forest. It was renamed in 1949 to honor Gifford Pinchot, a pivotal figure in the creation of the national forest system in the county. The forest was traditionally the land of the Yakima tribe, among other tribes. There are 7 wilderness areas established inside the forest, which together provide protected habitats for threatened species like the spotted owl and chinook salmon.
The Gifford Pinchot National Forest is an excellent destination for hiking, backpacking, camping, mountain biking, fishing, and more. Whether you’re planning a quick day in the forest or a longer, more extensive adventure, our expansive catalogue of route guides will help you pick the perfect trails. Let’s go!Read More