Saddle Mountains

Bureau of Land Management, Washington.

The 30-mile ridge of the Saddle Mountains rises above the Columbia River in south-central Washington, providing views of the surrounding countryside and wide-open desert scenery. Adventurous visitors can enjoy opportunities to hike, horseback ride, collect petrified wood, and drive motorized vehicles on the rugged roads and trails through the sagebrush. Visitors are encouraged to explore the west end of the Saddle Mountains due to the amount of private land intermixed with BLM-managed lands on the east end. No facilities are present in this area, and snow and rain occasionally close the gravel and dirt roads.

Know Before You Go:

Point of Interest:

The Saddle Mountains have long been a recreational collecting site for petrified wood which is Washington States official “gemstone”. The Saddle Mountains are actually part of a large fold in the earth’s crust called an anticline (an elongated upward fold in rocks). The anticline dips (slopes) very steeply on the north side (Crab Creek drainage) and gently to the south.

Nearby Activities


The largest area of accessible BLM-managed land is on the west end of the Saddle Mountains. Take Hwy 243 south of Vantage, then Hwy 24 east to Mattawa. Several miles east of Mattawa, turn left on “R” road to climb the foothills of the Saddle Mountains to BLM-managed land. Please keep safety and private land in mind. Use caution when approaching blind hills and corners, and keep a watchful eye for other visitors and livestock.