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Backpacker Magazine – August 2012

Trail Mix: West

Your region's go-now guide.

by: Eli Boscetto, Morgan Tilton and Rachel Zurer

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Pontail Falls (Photo by: Terry Donnelly)
Pontail Falls (Photo by: Terry Donnelly)
Paulina Lake, OR (Photo By: Greg Vaughn)
Paulina Lake, OR (Photo By: Greg Vaughn)

Explore: Portland’s Gorge Hikes
Rock of Ages, Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area
This 8.8-mile loop wastes no time warming up: You’ll catch views of 192-foot Horsetail Falls before leaving the parking lot. The views keep coming as you climb nearly 3,000 feet to snag glimpses of an arch, three more waterfalls, and the gorge (Trip ID 251760). Scan the code to download our free smartphone app, GPS Trails, and get 15 more gorge dayhikes.

Perfect Days
Bozeman, MT Beehive Basin
Right from the trailhead, the steely Spanish Peaks beckon beyond lush alpine meadows filled with blue-bells and paintbrush (midsummer). An 800-foot climb over 2.1 miles takes you to an unnamed lake at the foot of the cirque. Before you leave town, hit the Lone Peak Brewery for a pint of the Hellroaring ESB (lonepeakbrewery.com). Trip ID 948861

Denver, CO Lumpy Ridge Loop
Trek past mammoth Picasso-esque boulders and aspens to crystalline Gem Lake on this 10.2-mile loop on Rocky Mountain NP’s eastern edge. Drive home along the Big Thompson River so you can stop at Glen Haven’s General Store for homemade double-wide cinnamon rolls (open until 6 p.m.; glenhavengeneralstore.com). Trip ID 60518

Los Angeles, CA Morris Peak
Gain a 7,215-foot summit on this 9.8-mile out-and-back along a stretch of the PCT. After soaking up views of neighboring peaks, head home via CA 178 W to soak yourself in Remington Hot Springs’ cement pools, a quarter-mile hike from a parking area on Kern Canyon Road (free; bit.ly/remingtonsprings). Trip ID 16893



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Anonymous
Sep 06, 2012

Beehive Basin is actually in Big Sky, MT! I've hiked this trail numerous times. Please make sure your facts are accurate before printing!

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