The Oyster Dome (Pacific Trail)

Chuckanut Ridge as seen from the Oyster Dome

Chuckanut Ridge as seen from the Oyster Dome

I don’t even know what to say about the hike to the Oyster Dome.  I can only recommend that you experience it for yourself.  The views…amazing.  The effort it takes to get there…yeah.  You’ll ascend over 2000 feet in about 3 miles.  Hiking distance, round trip, is about 6 miles (unless you visit some of the other points of interest while hiking this leg of the Pacific Trail).

You can reach the Oyster Dome by following the instructions to the Bat Caves.  At the junction with the Bat Caves/Talus Trail, continue uphill instead of taking the Talus Trail fork to the left.  It isn’t much more than 1/2 mile to the top of the Dome once you reach this junction.  It’s the steepest, most exhausting 1/2 mile of the entire hike, but well worth it!  Oh yes, you will encounter one more fork as you ascend.  It is one of those lovely unsigned junctions that are so common along the Pacific Trail…actually, there might be a sign that says something about horses not being allowed, anyhoo…this is the fork that splits to Lily Lake.  Stay to the left and continue uphill to reach the Oyster Dome.

Make sure you save this hike for a sunny day to maximize your views.  Not that looking down at a blanket of clouds isn’t enjoyable too…

Oyster Dome Panorama

Oyster Dome Panorama

Trail Ratings:

Signage: Could be worse, but not so good.

Views: Unparalleled!  Bring your camera/sketchbook/eyeballs

Dogs OK: Yes.  You may want to leash up when you reach the top of the dome.  More than one silly dog has galloped over the edge.

Kids OK: Know your kids.  It’s a dangerous drop of several hundred feet from the sheer cliff’s edge at the top of the dome.


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