Starting from the Naneum Rim Trailhead, this photogenic loop links lush meadows, cliff-top views, and scores of wildflowers. Begin descending grassy slopes spotted with pines and wildflowers before passing a trailside perch overlooking lush valley and basalt-lined cliffs. Take in the views from this vantage point, then descend another mile to the northern edge of Naneum Meadow, a sprawling field nestled beneath basalt-rimmed cliffs. After tracing the eastern edge of the meadow, veer left for a mile-long climb to the top of the basalt cliffs.
Roughly 3 miles into the hike, the route rounds to the northeast and traverses the slopes above Howard Creek—postcard-worthy views of cliff-lined canyons appear at mile 4.8. From here, the trail drops to Howard Creek and turns onto Trail 1373 for a dusty, northwest climb out of the lower forest. Finish off the loop with a scenic, 2.2-mile road walk along FR 9712, which passes the expansive Haney Meadows (a hangout for deer, elk, bears) and reconnects with the trailhead at mile 9.6.
-Mapped by Alan Bauer, Alan Bauer Photography