Follow Buck Creek Trail #1513, ascending 3,100 feet over nearly 10 miles through forest with steadily improving views of the cliffs of Buck Mountain and other peaks across the lush valley. Turn left, staying along Buck Creek. There are a number of campsites in the woods before the trail switchbacks away from the creekbed. Pitch your tent in one of the several forested campsites at the pass. Continue the adventure the next morning by heading northeast to Helmet Butte. It's a steep, strenuous off-trail scramble, but the summut presents a Kodak sweep that includes Fortress and Clark Mountains and a sea of peaks to the north. For a gentler side trip, head north on the easy 2-mile round-trip to Flower Dome. The meadows on the dome's top offer a great perch for gawking at Glacier Peak across the deep, broad slash of the Suiattle River valley.
Season summer Permit Free, self-issue at trailhead; day pass or NW forest pass required for parking at trailhead Contact Glacier Peak Wilderness