Gaining the summit of Sutton Mountain is attainable for hikers with moderate fitness and offers a reprieve from the snow-laden Cascades during most of the winter.
Topping out at 4,694 feet, Sutton Mountain looms large over its surroundings. From its summit, superb views of Central Cascades peaks, from Mt. Jefferson to Mt. Adams, can be observed on a clear day. Sutton also provides a unique birds-eye perspective of the Painted Hills, the vaunted centerpiece of the John Day formation, a 16 million year old geologic event, which also shaped Sutton Mountain.
Sutton Mountain is a 29,000-acre wilderness study area managed by the Bureau of Land Management for primitive recreation, naturalness and opportunities to experience solitude. For nearly 20 years, ONDA has been part of an effort to permanently protect this area as wilderness to ensure these values are preserved.
Notes and advice
As always, hikers should carry the 10 Essentials and follow Leave No Trace principles. Make sure to pack your compass, maps and sturdy boots. Bring plenty of clothing layers; temperature extremes are the norm.
Visitors can find lodging, gas, restaurants and groceries in nearby Mitchell, Oregon.