One of several feeder trails to the Kettle Crest, the Ryan Cabin Trail provides easy access to numerous route options in the Kettle Range. At only 1.7 miles one-way, Ryan Cabin is among the shortest of the feeder trails leading to the Kettle Crest, intersecting this National Recreation Trail between Mount Leona and Profanity Peak. Side hikes to these and other nearby high points are popular destinations. Mount Leona has a summit trail, although it is infrequently maintained and can be difficult to follow. Profanity has no summit trail but is a moderate off-trail scramble.
This entire area was heavily impacted by the 2015 Stickpin Fire, resulting in the loss of the trail's namesake cabin along with the majority of the trees along the route. Visitors can expect to find a ghost forest with few large living trees and frequent downfall following wind events. As the understory slowly grows back the biggest draws will be early summer wildflowers and fall colors.
One of the most popular loop routes before the fire was the 6.4 mile loop including Ryan Cabin, the Kettle Crest heading south, and exiting via the Stickpin Trail which returns to the same trailhead as Ryan Cabin. While Ryan Cabin has been maintained since the fire, Stickpin Trail has not, so expect some route-finding difficulties if attempting this loop. The trail can provide excellent access to backpacking opportunities on the Kettle Crest, and a small campground is available at the trailhead (picnic tables, fire rings; no outhouse available).