Sunday, April 24, 2005

Mt. Si

Quick facts
Driving distance from Seattle: usually less than 1 hour
Hiking distance (both ways): around 8 miles (13km)
Elevation gain: 3,400ft (1,050m)
Green Trails Map: partially on 206
You need the NW Forest Pass to park at the trailhead

Mount Si is probably the closest "serious" hike from Seattle so it gets very crowded on weekends during the main hiking season. Still, if you only have a few hours, this is definitely better than nothing. The trail is very pleasant: quite wide and well maintained and entirely in a forest shielding you from sun. And the 3,400ft elevation gain means that you won't get bored and that you will get pretty good exercise.

View from Mt. Si
View from Mt. Si[Views from Mt. Si]

Many hikers stop as soon as they reach the open area at the top. At the very least you should gather the last bits of energy and scramble up the rocks for a great view of the valley below and, if you are lucky, of distant Seattle.

Haystack at Mt. Si[The Haystack]

But you should also try to get up the Haystack (see the picture above). The base is only a few minute hike from where most people have their lunch. Then you need to scramble a couple hundred feet to the top for really nice open views and a little bit of solitude in an otherwise pretty crowded area.

Driving directions:
see my earlier post for more detailed practical info.


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