White River Trails

A collection of singletrack mountain bike trails in the vicinity of the White River, right outside Mt Rainier National Park. The map below shows the portion of 410 where the trailheads are. 

      
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Directions: from Enumclaw, take 410 about 30 miles. There are several access points depending on which trails, loops, or direction you want to ride.
  • The first access point (northernmost) is on Forest Road 73 or 7300 on some maps (west of 410) , just before the Dalles Campground. You can ride the north end of the Skookum Flats Trail from there.
  • The next access point is the north end of the Palisades Trail, a little beyond FR 7150 (which hits 410 twice, I'm referring to the second time you pass it from the north) on the east side of 410.
  • Down a little farther, on FR 7160, there is a trailhead where you can connect to the Skookum Flats Trail near the southern end. If you ride to the south end of Ranger Creek State Airport, you'll find the start of the trail to Suntop. Here's a couple views of the parking lot and trailhead:
           
  • Farther south are several smaller access points mostly on the east side of 410.
Many of the trails in the area allow mountain bikes. I have only been on a few of them, but there seem to be five main trails which can be connected into various combinations and loops:

(Note: the trail description links are to VisitRainier.com which has excellent write-ups of trails and activities in the area)
  • Skookum Flats, which runs along the west side of the White River and 410 between FR 7300 and the park boundary. Here's an out-and-back ride that's a little over 6 miles one-way, 2 hours or less:

    If you start from the very north end of the trail, it's 8 miles one-way. 

    You can find the latest conditions by checking the WTA's trip reports, but they will be targeted at hikers.

  • White River runs parallel on the east side of the road, but not as far north. You can loop Skookum Flats with this trail and some road riding.
  • There's a small side trail, Snoquera Falls, which bypasses some of the White River Trail, but I've never been on it. One junction is right before the north end of the White River Trail, and the other is down by Buck Creek.
  • The other two trails are longer trips with much more elevation, Palisades on the east side of 410, and Suntop on the west side.  These are much more strenuous than Skookum Flats. Suntop can be ridden as an out and back from the trailhead at FR 7160, but most people make a loop by riding up Forest Road 7300 to FR 7315 and following all the way to the Suntop peak at 5300 ft. From there you connect to the trail; there's a quick descent to about 4800ft, then a climb back up to 5400ft. After that, it's all downhill back to the trailhead at 7160 where you can take the Skookum Flats trail, 410, or 410 and White River Trail. Here's a map of the route:

View Suntop MTB in a larger map

This video from one of my fall 2012 rides provides a good overview:



And is the elevation profile for a ride up from FR 7300, out via the trailhead at FR 7160, and back via 410:

For the best map of the trails, head over to Cascade Singletrack and check out their page on Skookum Flats, it has a great map and links to other trails mentioned above.
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