Travels with the Original Easyrider®
2010 Edition
Portland, Oregon

Ride to Archer Mountain
And hike to the summit - Southern access
Stevenson, Washington - 10/2/10


For information about the Northern access to Archer Mountain,
click HERE

For information about my first (failed) attempt to find Archer Falls,
click HERE

For information about the Southern access to the Archer Mountain summit,
click HERE

The Southern access road to the Archer Mountain Trailhead is well marked.
Traveling East on Washington route 14, turn left at milepost 29.55 and go up
Smith-Cripe Road.

Follow the road for about a mile and a half to the end.
The bottom section has been recently paved. The last bit is
paved also but pretty beat up. There is a large parking area at the end.

This sign sort of implies that you are on Forest Road 1853 but I
saw nothing about it on my Gifford Pinchot Forest map.

You quickly come up on a grassy area known as High Valley. This was a
Homestead area 100 or so years ago and more recently the site of a Hippie
Commune. All traces of life here seem to be gone. A local guy I ran into
said that this was Fletcher Flat to the left. It is also referred to as the
Archer Mountain West Ridge. Note the big "T". I didn't do much exploring
this day but didn't see any obvious trails to the top.

This is Archer Mountain, straight ahead and to
the right of Fletcher Flat.

You soon come up on a fork that offers three choices.
Many of these trails simple take you in a loop that could be as long as
a mile but in most cases the loops are very short. I've gone down all three.
The fork to the left just before the 159 sign goes to Fletcher Flat.

The middle trail fork choice.

This trail is a long loop that takes you right back where you started.
There is a faint and now closed trail to Archer Falls a few hundred yards
down this trail and to the right.

The trail choice to the right, just before the 159 sign is the correct
(and most likely the only "legal") way to get to the Archer Mountain summit.

Various reports I've read said that you cannot get to the Archer Mountan summit
from the South any more but you'll never know if you don't look around, right?
The reports are that the access roads to the North are gated too so getting to
the top of Archer Mountan may not be possible at all now. I took this trail to
the left to check out Flethcer Flat. Note the Forest Road 1853 159 marker on the
middle trail.

You'll fairly quickly come across a wall that looks like this. There is a
faint trail behind it that leads to the base of some intimidating looking
moss covered rocks and a VERY steep climb to the top. I brought no first
aid kit so anything like that will have to wait for another day.

I'm guessing there is a way to get to the top. If I find one, the
picture below will be clickable to a link with trail guide information.
For now, my interest is in hiking Archer Mountain although this piece could
make for an interesting side trip.

This area has also been referred to as the West Ridge in various reports I've
read. The West Ridge Ridgetop trail to the top is reportedly also closed.

I took the fairly wide trail that ran parallel to the wall which
quickly got me to an open field headed towards Archer Mountain. This
looked promising but quickly turned out to be a 1/2 mile loop that took
me around in circles. I didn't spend a pile of time investigating but
it looks like this is the trail to nowhere.

A couple more shots of The Archer Mountain West Ridge/Fletcher Flat

I'll continue to add more here as I return for better looks.
From what I've read, Archer is a small but complex mountain that
takes all day to summit even if you know what you are doing.
When I return next I will see if I can find Archer Falls and will
update this page as I explore. This is not a popular hike and there
isn't a lot of info available about the mountain. But the trails
look well travelled so it's clear that people are coming here.

First trip to Fort Stevens

Ride to Sisters, Oregon and McKenzie Pass

Ride along the Crown Point Highway