This is THE iconic hike on the east side of Glacier National Park. And thus it was the one where we encountered the most other hikers (20-30, including a ranger-led hike). It’s 11 miles roundtrip, and with 1,600 feet of elevation gain, from Many Glacier Hotel to Grinnell Glacier, so we got an early start (easy to do when the trail starts right from the hotel).
Mount Oberlin sits just northwest of Logan Pass in the center of Glacier National Park’s heavy tourism zone. It’s billed as the easiest “real” (meaning you have to register with the rangers) climb in the park but barely makes it to Class 3 in just one or two spots. But if you only have a short time in the park, yet want to do a short hike/scramble (2.5 miles roundtrip; 1,500 feet of elevation gain) with amazing views (and away from the crowds), then Mount Oberlin is it.
We were in Northern California to hike Mount Lassen but were thwarted in that by trail maintenance and wildlfires. As an alternative, we decided to do a hike to Hodges Cabin on the North Fork of Coffee Creek [Supplemental Hike #183 in Sullivan’s 100 Hikes/Travel Guide ~ Southern Oregon & Northern California (Fourth Edition)]. A short hike on a hot day with a bit of history and a creek.
We’d set out on a hiking roadtrip this August with the express purpose of summiting Mount Lassen in California, only to find that the summit trail was closed for the season due to maintenance. Note to self: Call the Park before driving for six hours. After consulting our collection of guidebooks, we decided that hiking Mount Eddy [Hike #95 in Sullivan’s Southern Oregon and Northern California hiking guide (Fourth Edition)] would be an entirely acceptable Plan B . It proved to be an excellent choice, with all of the features Sullivan promises.