Elk Cove & Pinnacle Ridge

  • Difficult (to Elk Cove)
  • 9.2 miles round trip
  • 2250 feet elevation gain
  • Open mid-July through October


  • Difficult (to Dollar Lake)
  • 9 miles round trip
  • 2350 feet elevation gain

Arguably the prettiest and quietest timberline meadows at Mt. Hood are on its north flank—on the opposite side of the mountain from the tourist crowds at Timberline Lodge. This hidden Eden became even quieter after a glacial flood closed the Timberline Trail near Cloud Cap and a wildfire scorched the forests.

Only two paths climb to this shoulder of Mt. Hood, and both traverse several miles of black snags. Consider it the price of admission. If you’re backpacking, you can combine both trails in a grand loop and still have time to explore the glorious, unburnt meadows at timberline. Start by following signs …

Other Options

If you’re backpacking the …

This chapter taken from the book 100 Hikes/Travel Guide: Northwest Oregon & Southwest Washington.

Mt. Hood from Elk Cove