Five North Cascades Privies where the views don’t stink!

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6 December 2015
Comments: 2

Goat Peak’s precipitous privy.

There’s no shortage of phenomenal outdoor scenery in Washington’s North Cascades. Some of the most breathtaking backcountry in the country can be experienced by taking to one of the region’s excellent hiking trails. And among resplendent wildflower meadows, ancient cathedral forests, sparkling alpine lakes, and glacier covered craggy peaks—you’ll find some of the most scenic privies on the planet.

Let me introduce you to five of my favorite backcountry crappers. Five outhouses that definitely don’t stink when it comes to views. Five bun resters where the scenery will take your breath away before the stench emanating from the ground will. Five dump depositories where you’ll dismiss your map and guidebook for reading material and sit and stare at an explosion of natural beauty surrounding you. Five loos that make a big stink when it comes to delectable views.

Here they are in no particular order—they’re all number one or number two in my book!

  1. Desolation Peak

Take a load off your mind at Desolation Peak’s privy.

It’s a steep climb to this lookout made famous by Jack Kerouac, but you won’t be too pooped to wax poetic upon dropping your derriere here. “Hozomeen, Hozomeen, prettiest mountain I’ve ever seen from a latrine!”


  1. Hidden Lakes Lookout

Plop you fanny on this open box high above the Cascade River and any doubts why you made this journey will soon be wiped from your mind. While the lake may be hidden below, you’ll be exposed to a sea of serrated peaks adorned in ice and snow.


  1. Pyramid Mountain

At 8200 feet, this pooper just may leave you short of breath. But this outhouse has long been out of work—best now just to just sit here and think instead of sh** here and stink. Watch the Lady of the Lake ply Lake Chelan 7000 feet below—nearly as deep as the bowels of the earth.


The views from Hidden Lake Lookout’s loo are explosive!


  1. Goat Peak

Kids will love this pretty privy sitting precipitously on the summit of 7000 Goat Peak. Settle on in and listen to the winds break through the wooden slats.


  1. Mount David

The Grand Poo-bah when it comes to backcountry privies, this outhouse near the summit of 7200-foot Mount David literally rocks! The throne of stone is what I have dubbed it—and no doubt its construction kicked some ass!


Pyramid Mountain’s airy privy has seen better days and moons!

 Not a crappy little list at all I’m sure you’ll agree. Where are your favorite privies for scenic relief?

If you feel the urge to go and hike to these destinations, consult the following books for spot on directions and guidance!

Desolation Peak and Pyramid Mountain found in Backpacking WashingtonHidden Lake Lookout and Goat Peak found in Day Hiking North Cascades; and Mount David found in Day Hiking Central Cascades.

Day Hiking titles

2 comments on “Five North Cascades Privies where the views don’t stink!

  1. Small Town Washington on said:

    I see we are on the same wavelength. I was at Mazama Horse Camp in October and thought wouldn’t a fun article be Pits with Picture Views.

  2. Jeanie on said:

    When I was in Washington 2008 – 2009 I thought about writing about all the different outhouses that I had to use when we were traveling across the state. Some good ones, some really bad ones and some so cold you almost froze your bottom off.

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