Carbon River Road/Summit Lake

Went for a hike at Summit Lake; WTA listed this hike as a good choice this weekend. It was a clear day and the close proximity that this trail has to Mt. Rainier held a lot of promise for some stunning vistas.

Departing from Buckley, WA on 410, heading south on 165, through a couple of small sleepy towns, the ride was pleasant except for a few surprise boulders that had recently made their way into the middle of the well worn blacktop road from a minor rock slide. Carbon River Rd is the left split when there is a fork in the road.

Continuing up the valley, on your left will be an obvious one lane bridge crossing over the glacial till river. This is NF-7810. This way up to the trailhead can be rutted and wash-boarded, so plan to lower the tire pressure on your vehicle. Decreasing tire pressure on dirt roads will increase the square inch footprint of each tire, thereby increasing the grip. It will make the ride so much more pleasant and will reduce the potential damage to your suspension/alignment. Be sure to bring that air compressor so you can bring the tires PSI back to highway standards.

I misplaced my Staun tire pressure deflators so I used my Viair pressure gauge instead to lower the pressure. Worked amazingly well. Nice thing about it is that with the heavy duty, attached gauge I can precisely deflate to a specific PSI with this tool, rather than merely deflating and checking as I would usually do with the Staun deflators. I do believe that going forward, I’ll just use this Viair pressure gauge that came with the 450P over the Staun deflators.

Anyways, to the pictures.


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