Mt Jupiter


Its a long dry trail, bring plenty of water.

Mt Jupiter had been on the radar for quite some time. It seemed like every time I was ready to go hike it, the gate to it was closed. I know some people parked at the gate and hiked up anyways but it adds quite a bit more elevation to an already hard day. I figured I would just be patient and wait for a good day when I knew for sure the gate was open. Well that day had come and I was determined to check Jupiter off the list.

When the gate is open and you do make your attempt to find the trailhead, note that it is a little obscured and not exactly easy to find unless you know what to look for. From the WTA website "Follow Mount Jupiter Road for 3.5 miles and turn left on FR 2610-011. Continue on this steep and rough road 3 miles to the trailhead." What those directions don't tell you is that the trailhead is on a side road. Once you go the 3 miles on 2610-011, you'll be at a sharp bend in the road that goes up steeply. At the bend, you'll see a side road on the left. The trailhead is just down that side road less that a tenth of a mile. I've heard of some folks going right past the side road - even folks hiking up from the seasonally closed gate only to find they've missed the trailhead altogether.

The trail itself was in pretty good shape, at least the lower section was. The upper section could use a little attention as it was becoming a little bit grown over.

The only thing else I'll add, other than it being a long and difficult hike, there is also not any water anywhere to be found on the ridge so be sure to bring plenty. I did OK with three liters and a fourth stashed in the car for the ride home. I hid one of the liters about half way up the trail so I'd have something on the way down. It was a nice day, not particularly hot out and I drank all three liters. I was happy to have something in the car.

Hike responsibly
Start of the trail from the side road.
The Brothers Mountain
The Brothers
Seattle. Also you can just make out a large contingent of boats out on the canal in the lower right.
The start of the trail is on a clear cut. You then go though a patch of forest only to emerge at another clear cut. Once you get through this one, you will be off of private land and in National Forest the rest of the way. The trail is also relatively flat through the next part for about a mile and a half.
Nice trail on the lower section
Didn't see many flowers. There were a few triliums however
And some Evergreen Violets or possibly Roundleaf Violets? Both species look very similar to me.
And a very small patch of avalanche lilies. Other than these, the flowers were hard to come by.
You can see the top of Jupiter from here
The trail goes into the Brothers Wilderness
Mt Constance
One of the Jupiter Lakes
I saw probably 12 or 13 Bald Eagles circle around riding the thermals. They were catching some good ones as they were all soon overhead and circling above the summit.
Bald Eagle
A look down the ridge, out to the Canal and beyond. It was very hazy .
Someone else thought it would be a good idea to ride the thermals up.
This guy had the right idea, but where would he land?
What a feeling it must be to fly like that!

Check it out, he flew right over me. Really added to the excitement of being on the summit.

MT Constance. The air quality looked a little better in the mountains
Mt Constance
The Brothers and the Duckabush river valley
Mt Jupiter Benchmark
Another Mt Jupiter benchmark. Not sure why there were two.
Some neat ponds on the back side of Jupiter. These were separate from the Jupiter lakes. I've heard these ponds have been stocked with trout.
A good view down the ridgeline
Panorama of the view from the summit
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2 thoughts on “Mt Jupiter

  • January 29, 2016 at 5:29 pm

    The violet is an evergreen. Round leaf has bigger leaves. You can also feel the difference between evergreen and deciduous leaves. Evergreen leaves feel thicker, harder, or leathery while deciduous leaves are soft.

    • February 1, 2016 at 10:12 am

      Thanks for the confirmation! It was hard to tell for sure just going by pictures.


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