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ELEVATION: 7487 ft, with at least 3200 ft vertical gain from either TH; around 2000 ft vertical gain from a viewpoint without the summit.

DISTANCE: 7 mi up, 14 mi round-trip; 12 mi round-trip without the summit.

DURATION: 4-6 hours up, 8-10 hours round-trip; 3 hours up to the viewpoint.

DIFFICULTY: Very challenging. Long, fairly steep summit bid, bushwhack, minimal scrambling, route-finding, steep slope difficult with snow to summit juncture or Heart Lake, ice axe and crampons required until late summer, rocky summit block, mountain goat encounters possible.

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TRIP REPORT: Undervalued is this lesser known summit on the northern edge of the Goat Rocks Wilderness with a great trail for most of it leading through wildflower-choked Lily Basin. It is difficult to visit until late July or even August when snow and ice finally melt from the super-steep N-facing slopes off of Johnson Peak’s SW ridge in Lily Basin. It’s about 6 mi to the intersection with Angry Mountain Trail 90 at a saddle on the SW ridge of Johnson Peak, then another 5 mi and less than 500 ft down steeply to beautiful Heart Lake as an alternate day hike or camping trip. Some people even stop at the little saddle with its great views of Angry Mountain, Middle Fork Johnson Creek valley, and Hawkeye Point, and return by the same route. Northwest Forest Pass required at both THs, and there are no restrooms.

TRAILHEAD: Lily Basin TH or Lily Basin Stock TH. Take I-5 N from Portland to exit 68 (Morton/Yakima), turn right on US-12 E 61 mi (passing Morton and Randle, last rest area at milepost 126), turn right (S) on gravel FR-48 (easy to miss, milepost 129V) for 101/2 mi and 10 turns to a small pullout on the left with the signed Lily Basin TH on the right (last 2 mi narrower and slightly rougher with a few potholes, okay for 2WD, AWD preferred).

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