Hiking South Sister is another one of those questionable day hikes but leisurely overnight backpacking trips. I have done it as both a day hike and as an overnighter, and can attest to both being very rewarding in different ways. Although the competitor in me says that everyone should experience it as a day hike, taking your time up this mountain is worth it; you’ll be rewarded almost the entire way with spectacular views of both South Sister looming right in front of you, as well as Broken Top, Bachelor, Jefferson, and some other mountains along the way to the summit.
The hike is about 12 miles round trip, so again, if you’re going to hike it in a day, it’s best to get there mid-morning. You’ll also be gaining almost 5,000 feet in elevation, so it is not a simple up and back hike. You may want to go into this hike already in decent shape.
I did this hike with some teaching co-workers of mine, one of whom had never done it before. I’ll let the pictures do the narrating from here.