From Hood River, drive across the river and follow Highway 141 North to Trout Lake. In Trout Lake, take the right hand fork north towards Forest Service Road 23 and drive Road 23 for approximately 25 miles until reaching a sign for Takhlakh Lake (This intersection can also be reached by traveling from Highway 12 and Randle by taking the exit for Highway 131, and taking Cispus Road to Forest Route 23). Follow the sign towards Takhlakh Lake for three quarters of a mile, turn right and drive this road for another half mile (still following signs to the lake), then taking the left hand fork towards Takh-Takh meadows. Drive this road for 1.9 miles to the trailhead for trail #112 on the right.
This trail provides access to spectacular meadows and great views of the northwest face of Mt. Adams. The trail stays in the sub-alpine forests for most of the trail as it parallels Adams Creek. The grade stays constantly moderate throughout the first three quarters of a mile before starting a slightly steeper climb before meeting up with an unsigned side trail that leads back down to the road on the opposite side of the creek. From the right vantage points, the massive north face of Mt. Adams can be seen through the trees. In another half mile, a side trail leads a quarter mile to the right and Divide Camp, while the main trail opens up into wonderful meadows with lupine, paintbrush, and impressive views of Mt. Adams. The trail continues to climb until reaching the Pacific Crest Trail at the 2.5 mile mark.
For the off-trail trip to see the meadows, cross Adams Creek and head north on the Pacific Crest Trail (Adams Creek can be difficult to cross, scout around for logs or rocks to hop over) for a quarter mile and start bushwhacking towards Mt. Adams (open country with only smaller stands of trees makes this relatively easy, and a map is recommended). A little over a half-mile from the Pacific Crest Trail, the territory should level off slightly and the meadows open up. If camping, be very selective on where you camp. Since this is high alpine country, be sure to tread lightly. If you have extra time, continue hiking towards Mt. Adams for great views of the summit, as well as Mt. Ranier, St. Helens, and the Goat Rocks. Be sure to keep an eye out for wildlife. Mountain Goats can be seen in the meadows higher up on the mountain.
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This is one of the most difficult hikes that I have done. The trail we followed was not a trail, it was boulder-hiking for hours! Like doing the stairmaster on level 15 for five hours. I would recommend crampons to avoid the rocks. Gain is well worth the pain.