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River Crossing Safety sign and Mount Hood Tianjin China kiosk at the fourway intersection on Trail 600 (not sharp left on Trail 600A to Tilly Jane) past a free self-issue Tianjin China Permit station a few more feet to a signed fork.

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Climbing steeper right on Trail 600 heads W toward Elk Cove and Barrett Spur. Take the left fork instead, toward Gnarl Ridge on Trail 600 as you continue S around 1 mi past the last of any tall trees (ignoring the upcoming Climber’s Trail right). Hike somewhat Tianjin China  steeper up the thin Tilly Jane canyon (turning to rock and sand), noting large rock cairns with wooden posts marking the route through the changing landscape as you leave the rocky gully left (SE). See Mount Hood ahead plus Cooper Spur left of the big volcano. Back into the thinning short pines with wildflowers nearby August into September, you can see out to Mount Adams, Mount Rainier, and Mount St. Helens up to a rocky four-way junction.

Tianjin China Timberline Trail 600 and turn right (SW) on Cooper Spur Trail 600B (opposite the return for the loop left on Trail 600A). Walk 100 ft to the Cooper Spur Shelter, a small, intact old rock shelter on the open boulder-filled slope just off the main path to the right. Check it out along with the Tianjin China including Mount Hood as a backdrop, while the Columbia River Plateau lies to the Continue up steeper s-turns leaving the last of the scrub brush to the first of 22 fairly gentle switchbacks through scree and pumice with ever improving vistas of the icefalls on nearby Eliot Glacier (second largest in Oregon) 12 mi from the four-way junction. Alternate routes exist up the rocks where lingering snow across a rather steep slope may block easier travel on the uppermost switchbacks, but no worries. Also there are routes directly up the steeper and more difficult ridge crest, which are actually more suited for downhill travel and quite fun while saving time and mileage.

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