Hamilton Mountain
A fun hike with great features such as water falls, steep cliffs,
superb views, ridge line hiking, and deep forested areas, complete
with a loop for minimal repeat scenery. When Beacon Rock State
Park is open, you drive to the picnic area and park at the Hamilton
Mountain trail head. When the park is closed, leave your car along
side the road by Beacon Rock. The hike begins moderately steep
for about a mile then becomes more gentle as you approach the
first of two falls. Hardy Falls is visible by taking a short side trip, but
Rodney Falls is fully visible as your cross Hardy Creek on a bridge
right at the foot of the falls. At this point the trail becomes much
steeper and for the next 2 plus miles you gain nearly 1800' in
elevation. About 2.5 miles into the hike you come to a junction
where the trail returns via a loop from the back side of Hamilton
Mountain. If you continue straight ahead, you will come to the base
of the Little Hamilton Mountain. This works its way around to the
west side of the slope and begins a very steep climb through a
series of small switchbacks. At about 3 miles you level out between
Little Hamilton and the main Hamilton Mountain.  As you climb higher
and higher, you will begin to see more of the mountains of Oregon
to the south of you. Finally, you reach the top of Hamilton, and at
the junction there, take the path to the right to a rest area with a
view. Return by walking the ridge line to the north for about a mile.
The trail eventually connects to a service road which you will follow
for about a mile before entering back into the dense forested areas.
This loop will conclude at the junction you saw on the way up the
mountain at about the 2.5 mile mark.
Length: 9.5
Difficulty: Difficult
Pass: None Required
Hamilton Mountain is
located on Hwy 14
approx 30 miles east
from Vancouver
Washington, or 14
miles west of The
Bridge of the Gods in
the beautiful
Columbia River
Gorge.