Baring Mountain Trail
This is a moderate one way trail in Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest.
5.3 miles round trip to true summit, 3911ft elevation gain.
From the Barclay Lake Trailhead, locate the faint, brushy path that begins immediately behind the outhouse. Follow this path for approximately .2 miles, making a right at a steep, heavily obscured path leading directly toward the ridge top. This portion is steep, loose, and heavily eroded. Trekking poles are recommended here for additional traction. Take care route-finding. There are many social trails that lead to dead ends. The correct path is marked with orange and green tape.
Upon gaining the ridge at approximately 4100 feet the slope eases and the trail improves dramatically. Enjoy the stroll and save your energy for the summit push. At 4800ft the trail descends into a boulder field. Choose your own path here, but careful footing is advised. Many large boulders are surprisingly unstable and prone to shifting. Ahead you will see the twin summit spires, your goal is to ascend the talus slope between them.
Once you reach the saddle between the summit spires, the trail veers left and ascends onto another faint, brushy path. Again, keep an eye out for orange tape marking the correct route as this will steer you away from dangerous exposure. At about 6000ft the trail levels out into a wide meadow. The views here are outstanding. This makes a great spot for lunch and can accommodate many hikers. Above and to the left is the true summit.
Scramble up a complicated series of ledges, taking care not to venture too close to the dramatic cliffs to the east. Climb approximately 100 feet to the summit. There is room for at most half a dozen people here, not advised for larger groups. Descend the same route, giving the cliffs a wide berth. When descending the ridge back to the parking area make sure to stay on route. Many social paths cliff-out in surprising fashion.
From Stevens Pass Highway, turn north on NF-6024 at the town of Baring. This road dead-ends at the Mt Baring/Barclay Lake Trail Head. Parking here is limited, so take note of pullouts along the way. NW Forest pass (or equivalent) required, as well as self service permits available at the trail head.
Not recommended for young children. Steep, loose sections, lots of exposure near the summit. It is possible to cliff-out on descent if you find yourself off-route.