www.willhiteweb.com - Hiking, Climbing and Travel
Crystal & Chinook Peaks
Not listed on an maps, a high un-named point between Chinook Pass and Crystal Mountain has been dubbed with the name Chinook Peak. With trails all around the area, the peak is often climbed because it just looks like something that has the best view around. Two approaches can be made, one from Chinook Pass and another from the Crystal Lakes Trail. These pictures show the route from the Crystal Lakes/Peak trail. The map below shows a route which is a basic traverse over from Crystal Peak. We were just looking for something higher than Crystal Peak since we hiked in in summer. If you just want to stick to the trails, Crystal Peak has trail to the top of the former lookout site.
Distance: 4 miles for Crystal Peak, 5ish miles to Chinook
Summit Elevation: 6,595 & 6,904 feet
Elevation Gain: 3,500 feet for Crystal, 4,000+ feet for both
Take Hwy 410 from Enumclaw to Crystal Mountain Blvd, just outside Mount Rainier National Park. Drive 4.2 miles in the park to the parking and trailhead on the left side...a half mile before the split for White River/Sunrise
The trail climbs a thousand feet to a junction where you choose Crystal Lakes or Crystal Peak. Take a right and follow the trail as it climbs to the summit. The terrain opens up well before the summit and you could leave the trail heading directly to Chinook if you don't want to go up Crystal Peak. Crystal once had a lookout so you'll want to visit. With snow, have an axe, the open slopes go a long way. In summer, there are small game trails all around. I would guess there is a scramblers trail to Chinook Peak as well.
On a ridge
Looking south at Chinook Pass
Climbing above the White River Valley
Mount Rainier in view
Taking a direct route from the trail
On the ridge
Rocks near the summit