Warner Peak is a member of several different lists that might be of interest to peak baggers: Oregon Peaks with 2000 ft of Prominence, Great Basin Peaks List, Oregon Top 100 Peaks, and more. If collecting peaks on lists isn’t of interest to you, this is still a worthy hike just for the views!
There is no trail or road to the summit of Warner Peak. The terrain is mostly favorable to cross-country hiking, though some routes might be more comfortable than others to follow due to rocks and brushy terrain.
The track below reflects the loop that we hiked in late June of 2019. From the gate, the route starts comfortably along a well defined 2-track road. Upon reaching Barnhardi Cabin (where the loop broke out), we briefly followed the creek before ascending the hillsides on the south side of the creek. This took us through some thick brush, and then up a final steep slope to the upper plateau.
Once on the plateau the peak is visible to the south (look for the towers). It is a straight shot through brushy terrain to climb to the summit.
On the descent from Warner Peak we chose to take a steep and loose slope straight back down to the road. We were being chased by hoards of mosquitoes and they had been much less annoying down on the road.
We took our dogs (two labradors) on this hike, and though they were perfectly capable of the distance and elevation gain, I think the brush was quite obnoxious for them to navigate since it was right at eye height. I would leave them at home for this one if I did it again.
Topo map and GPX track:
Cross country route with several options.
Roughly 9-10 miles, depending on route chosen.
+/- 2400 ft
Trailhead and Permit Notes:
The hike to Warner Peak begins from a gate on Barnhardi Road just beyond the Hart Mountain Hot Springs Campground. This gate is open part of the year, but please respect its closure and park in the clearing at the gate if it is locked. No fees or permits are necessary to park here. The road was passable to all vehicles when we visited in June 2019, but the area does experience weather that can affect road conditions, particularly in winter. If this is hiked when the gate is open, the distance and elevation gain can be cut roughly in half.