Silver Star Mountain is easily visible from much of the Portland and Vancouver area, and is located about 28 crow-flying miles northeast of home. The upper mountain is mostly bare due to the century-old Yacolt forest fire, providing an uncommon “alpine” area at 4,300 feet.
In late October I began the hike from Grouse Vista. The weather was unusually warm with crystal blue skies.
After a detour to a row of Indian pits with views seemingly forever, I did the final steep one-mile climb to the summit of Silver Star. The crown jewels of the mid-Cascades were sparkling in the sunshine, showing off their fresh coats of snow.
On a personal note, we have placed a potion of the ashes of my father, mother and only niece on Silver Star’s summit over the years. Sitting on the summit gave me an opportunity to honor their memories.
They would have enjoyed the location. The views are open and far-reaching. Deer are often nearby, as are black bears when the huckleberries ripen in the autumn. Less than one mile away are the Indian pits used for religious ceremonies in the long past.