12.6 miles of hiking • 3000' elevation gain •
Besides being lovely the bonus on this one is that it get's you up on Adams south side in two hours from Portland. It also has minimal gravel road driving and the gravel part is actually in fairly good shape. The the first 3ish miles of the trail are faint and I definitely wandered off a few times, but basically you just follow the Aiken Lava beds up. There is flagging that was helpful in most spots but bewildering in others. Most of the lower part is burned, bit the bloom is coming back in nicely and it allows better views. At just under 5 miles you hit the Gotchen Creek meadows which are beautiful, which lead you into the stunning meadows, creeks and waterfalls near the Round the Mountain Trail. My turnaround spot was Crooked Creek Falls which is just east of the junction, between Snipes Mountain Trail #11 and the RTM. Amazing day!