Located in southwest Washington State, Mount Adams is one of the great ice-covered sentinels of the Cascades. Standing 12,281 feet at its summit, it is the second highest mountain in the Northwest USA and has the second largest eruptive volume in the Cascades. It is draped by ten glaciers, one of which is the second largest in the contiguous US. Adams is characterized by lush, flower-filled meadows that rival Mount Rainier's, tumbling creeks and waterfalls, and dense old growth forests intersected by large, ancient lava flows and rocky outcrops, easily visible from space as dark bands.
No two sides of the mountain are alike. Many long ridges and glacier-free slopes characterize the south side, making climbing easier for less-experienced hikers. Suksdorf Ridge stretches out from the false summit of Pikers Peak to South Butte, which produced the large A.G. Aiken Lava Bed. On the west side, multiple summits rise above small cirques and the remains of recent rock avalanches that traveled down the Cascade Creek Canyon and the White Salmon River. Its glaciated north side hosts the most impressive icy terrain on the mountain: the Adams, Lava, and Lyman Glaciers can be seen cascading down the mountain in many dramatic icefalls and crevasses, terminating at several large lava flows. Its east side is characterized by craggy, rocky edifices, cliffs, tumbling waterfalls, and the vast, glacier-carved Hellroaring Canyon and Avalanche Valley, divided by the spine of the Ridge of Wonders and Little Mount Adams Peak. Here, several rocky outcroppings such as The Spearhead, The Castle, Roosevelt Cliff, and Battlement Ridge can be seen just below the summit.
The 2663-mile long Pacific Crest Trail runs along the West slope of Mt Adams. Combined with the Around the Mountain and Highline Trails, this nearly encircles the mountain, save for a four-mile section known as "The Gap" on the rugged east side of the volcano. Bird Creek Meadows on the southwest side of the mountain is well-known among hikers for its intense display of wildflowers---one of the best in the entire Cascade Range. From the north side, High Camp---a high glacial meadow below the Adams Glacier and its many impressive icefalls---attracts hikers and mountain climbers as well. The famous Pacific Crest Trail climbs up the west side of the mountain to Horseshoe Meadows, and traverses its volcanic slopes, speckled with colorful and vibrant wildflowers among lava flows and rimrocks, and descends down the north side of the mountain along the Muddy Fork Lava Flows.
Whether hiking the real thing, or just hiking in a daydream, let this 3D print guide your journey to this unsung wonder of the Pacific Northwest.
Text by J. Smith.
Model scale is 1:24900
Model covers an area approximately 7.8 by 7.8 miles
Altitudes covered: 4032' to 12281'
There is never any vertical exaggeration in TinyMtn models.
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Model created using GDAL, NetPBM, Gmsh, Carve, MeshLab, and other custom software
Source of digital elevation data: U.S. Geological Survey
The USGS home page is http://www.usgs.gov/