Thursday, May 23, 2013

Weekly Hike #2: Working My Way Toward the Top

You have seen the top of Mount Si in a recent post, but you are probably aware of the fact that I have yet to hike to the top. If all goes well, this will be the year that I do it, probably along about September. To get myself ready for that hike (and also for another adventure which you will hear about in a future post), Mr. D and I are going to hike some harder and longer trails through the course of the summer.

On Friday, May 10th, a beautiful sunny day, we decided to hike the Talus Loop on the lower slope of Mount Si. We hiked this trail back in 2011, but this time, we did it a bit differently. From the Mount Si trailhead, it is 1.7 miles to the start of the 1.3 mile Talus Loop. Last time, we started the Talus Loop trail at this point. If you hike further on the Mount Si trail about another third of a mile, you get to the other end of the Talus Loop, and if you go about another tenth of a mile, you get to Snag Flats. This is the route we took. The Mount Si trail is steep the whole way up, so by going the extra distance you get an extra workout. Even near the start of the trail, you can see that it s going to become steep:

It took us about an hour to get to Snag Flats. In 1910, there was a massive forest fire that was racing down the mountain and the terrain of the land at Snag Flats stopped the fire. Many of the trees in this area were damaged by the fire, and over the years they fell and became what are called snags. Some of the trees survived the fire and are still standing and growing today, like this old growth Douglas Fir.

This beautiful old tree still had the marks of the fire that happened more than 100 years ago.

After eating a snack and drinking some water at Snag Flats, we headed back down to the upper end of the Talus Loop, and hiked to the sunny spot that offers some great views of Mount Rainier, the Cascades and Interstate 90 winding through the Snoqualmie Valley.

From this spot, it was almost all downhill. We passed through the quiet forest and over this pretty snow-fed stream.

So, while I haven't yet climbed Mount Si to the top, I did get halfway up! I hope to hike that much, and add the other half, sometime later this year. I will be sure to tell you about that adventure as soon as it happens.

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