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Tana Shaffer taking in the views from the top of Tibbetts mountain, looking down into Cashmere. Picture by Sarah Shaffer.

Tibbetts Mountain offers a variety of outings— from easy to adventurous walks and technically easy but physically vigorous mountain bike rides. The access from the Wenatchee Valley is short and the views over our foothills are spectacular–especially in spring and fall. Many believe the wildflowers along the road leading to the top are every bit as good as the Sauer Mountain hike (a regional favorite for flowers) and the birding along both routes described below is excellent. Much of Tibbetts Mountain burned in 2005 during the Fischer Creek Fire and, for a number of years, the ridge routes shown on our map were very sandy and littered with burnt deadfall. Over the years new growth and hikers with saws have improved those routes.

Length: 6 to 14.5 miles (roundtrip) depending on route followed.

Elevation: Gain of 1,800 to 2,700 vertical feet depending on route.

Skill. The dirt road to the top is technically easy for both hiking and mountain biking (1+ rating).

Fitness. Dirt Road Route: 2 (intermediate rating) — the pitch is quite steep and sustained.

Views up Ollala Canyon. Photo by Sarah Shaffer.

Map: View our topo map below for more information (8.5”x11” paper in portrait mode).

Use ‘Print Preview’ before printing to properly scale this map to a full sheet of paper.

Dirt Road Route up Tibbetts

  • Access:  Follow Highway 2 some 0.2 miles west of Milepost 109 and turn onto N Dryden Road, following signs to Peshastin Pinnacles State Park. In 0.5 miles reach the entrance to Peshastin Pinnacles State Park. The state park has some facilities and is a good place to park for a longer ride. Those who want a shorter, easier walk or mountain bike ride up the peak can drive 1.2 miles past the state park, turn right on Ollala Canyon Road, drive 4.5 miles and look for an unmarked gravel double-track road on the right (Road 7410-112). Turn right here and drive about 30 yards before parking on the left (a small pullout will accommodate several cars). Park so the maximum number of people can use the pullout (el. 2,240’).
  • From this small pullout, ride or walk up this steep road. Note: There are  ‘No Trespassing’ signs bordering the road for the first quarter mile. This is confusing but public use of the road is allowed — you’re simply not allowed to leave the road at this point. Before long the ‘No Trespassing signs disappear altogether.
  • 2.5 miles (el. 3,900’). The road reaches a shoulder. A little spur trail to the left goes to a nice viewpoint in a few hundred yards. To reach the true summit (el. 4,115’), leave the road at the shoulder by turning right and following a very faint trail along the ridge — you’ll reach the summit in about 0.25 miles.
  • Return by retracing the route.

Additional Routes Up Tibbetts. There are also some wilder and scenic ridge walks up Tibbetts Mountain. The yellow-dash routes on our map are primitive, unmaintained, and unsigned but follow old game trails that have been enlarged through human use (hunting and hiking). Access the ridge walks from Hay Canyon by driving Highway 2 to the western edge of Cashmere. About 100 or 200 yards east of Milepost 110, turn north on Hay Canyon Rd. Drive one mile until pavement’s end. Park 40 yards past pavement’s end in a pullout (el. 1,440’). Don’t park on the pavement, it’s a tow zone. From here, follow the purple road shown on our map to reach one of the two ridges we have highlighted. Forest Service signage at the bottom of these routes states these routes are for foot traffic only (mountain bikes and motorcycles are prohibited).

Hay Canyon Info: The public dirt road up Hay Canyon ends 1.7 miles uphill from pavement’s end. Here the road enters private land and is gated at the entrance to Hay Canyon Ranch. The ranch is used by Aerial Paragliding School (509-782-5543, www.paragliding.us). As of Spring 2021, Hay Canyon Ranch, partnering with the Chelan-Douglas Land Trust, has allowed public walking access to about 8.5 miles of trails on the ranch. However there is NO access to these trails off of Hay Canyon Road. The only public access to these trails is from a trailhead a few miles up the Nahahum Canyon Road. Click here for more information.

Land ownership: Wenatchee National Forest, county and Forest Service roads.

More Info: Ray Birks mapped a slightly different route down Tibbetts Mountain using the MapMyRide app on this Smartphone.

Permits: None needed.

Camping: Some people camp in Hay Canyon in a variety of places beyond pavement’s end. This is something of a paint gun Mecca. There are currently no facilities so people should bring their own porta-potty and pack out their waste. Leave the area cleaner than when you arrived.

Updates. Post updated on 5/26/20 by Sarah Shaffer and on 5/12/21 by Andy Dappen.

Leave It Better Than You found It.  This should be every outdoor user’s goal. Pick up trash left by others, pull noxious weeds along your route, disperse old fire rings (they encourage more fires), throw branches over spur trails and spurs between switchbacks (make it harder to do the wrong thing than the right thing).

Disclaimer. Treat this information as recommendations, not gospel. Things change, conditions change, and those contributing these reports are volunteers–they may make mistakes, fail to give complete information, or may not know all the issues affecting a route. You are completely responsible for yourself, your actions, and your safety. If you won’t accept that responsibility, you are prohibited from using our information.

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One Response

  1. Charles Hickenbottom

    Another fun route to Tibbetts begins at Peshastin Pinnacles State Park. The ridge run from above the crags is a distance of about 3.5 miles to the top of Tibbetts. Using a combination of auto and bike, one can then descend down to Hay Canyon and ride the shoulder of Highway 2 back to the pinnacles parking lot. Private land above Peshastin Pinnacles can be avoided by traversing from Pinnacles mid-height out to the east, then angling north to reach the ridgecrest at the saddle that separates Point 1783′ and Point 2007′. The logistics can also be changed up a bit by leaving a vehicle at Hay Canyon, then doing the bicycle leg along Highway 2 to begin the trip. There are trees in the Peshastin Pinnacles parking lot for securing your bike.

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