Hiking the Blue Mountains near Walla Walla

The Blue Mountains have hundreds of miles of hiking trails for you to enjoy. Many of these trails have little traffic, giving you the chance to explore the mountains in relative solitude. In this article, we've listed a few of our favorite trails in the Blue Mountains. If you need more information, give us a call at your convenience.

North Fork Walla Walla Trail

  • Length | 10.9 mile point-to-point
  • Difficulty | Moderate
  • Elevation change | 3,635 feet

The North Fork Walla Walla Trail is one of the area's best known hiking trails. The trail begins off Forest Service Road 65. It descends for the first few miles, then begins a long ascent. Along the way, you're surrounded by beautiful foliage and old-growth forests. It's especially pretty in the fall due to the variety of old-growth trees. Note that this trail is used by mountain bikes and folks on ATVs, as well as hikers. Leashed dogs are welcome.

Middle Point Ridge Trail

  • Length | 8.0 miles round trip
  • Difficulty | Difficult
  • Elevation change | 2,648 feet

The Middle Point Ridge Trail starts at the Middle Point Ridge Trail Trailhead off Forest Service Road 64. The beginning of the trail runs through deep woods and meadows. It then ascends quickly, and, as the name suggests, follows along Middle Point Ridge. The ridge leads to a high meadow. Along the way, you'll get to enjoy fantastic views of the Blue Mountains. Note that, in the winter, Middle Point Ridge Trail is an excellent snowshoeing trail. Leashed dogs are welcome on this trail.

Rattlesnake Trail

  • Length | 11.4 miles out-and-back
  • Difficulty | hard
  • Elevation change | 3,100 feet

Rattlesnake Trail, located in the Wenaha-Tucannon Wilderness, is a challenging out-and-back trail that is only maintained for hiking and horseback riding. The trail starts at the Rattlesnake Trail Head in the Panjab Campground. as a steady climb with a number of switchbacks. The first couple miles of the trail are a steady climb with numerous switchbacks. It eventually levels out as you near the ridgetop around the Indian Corral area. Rattlesnake Trail offers fantastic views of the surrounding mountains. It also features fields of wildflowers, quiet springs, and open meadows. Leashed dogs are allowed on the trail. 

Table Rock

  • Length | 1.2 miles round trip
  • Difficulty | Easy
  • Elevation change | 400 feet

This is simply a hike to Table Rock Fire Lookout, a unique point of interest. The trail starts at Table Rock South Trailhead. (You can actually drive up, but that'll take the fun out of it.) The fire lookout is staffed during the summer. You're welcome to visit, but you'll want to drop by between 9:00 a.m. and 6:00 a.m. The lookout cabin, constructed in 1937, sits on the Columbia River Basalt. From there, you have amazing views of the surrounding mountains.

Sawtooth Ridge

  • Length | 8.0 miles roundtrip
  • Difficulty | Easy
  • Elevation change | 500 feet

Located in the Wenaha-Tucannon Wilderness Area, the Sawtooth Ridge Trail provides more bang for the buck than most trails you'll find. It's a long trail, but relatively easy hike (due to little elevation gain). The trail starts in a heavily forested area, ascends for a bit, and then descends onto Sawtooth Ridge. After about 1.5 miles you start to get great views of the mountains to the west. Along the way, you'll have amazing views of the Upper Wenaha River watershed, and, depending on the season, wild flowers blanket the areas around the trail. Expect to see yellow arnica, blue larkspur, and columbine. Also, this area is visited by elk in the summers, so you might get a chance to see them from a distance. (Make sure to bring binoculars.)

Note that this trail is not visited often. The farther you hike, the more difficult it is to follow. If you plan on hiking the full length of the trail, you might want to carry a map and compass.

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