Friday, October 28, 2016

McClellan Butte

Went on a great conditioning hike along the I-90 corridor: McClellan Butte. This is a 9 mile hike with 3,700 ft of elevation gain. We did about 3,600 ft as we choose to not do the exposed scramble at the end.
There was a bit of fall color and lots of fungi today.
This hike is mostly in the forest, and the early part goes along and across forest service roads and for a short ways under power lines. There is a culvert with gushing water that comes from under the Iron Horse Trail. Once the trail crosses here it is uphill on many switchbacks.

There were several streams that cascaded down and over the trail making part of the trail wet and muddy.

A small wooden bridge crossed this stream

Part way up, there were these nice stone steps.

Some of the fall color.

The trail would cross under this narrow waterfall, high above is what I think is McClellan Butte.

We had an occasional view toward Alice Valley and Mount Kent.

About 4 miles from the trailhead the trail turns to the west, we could see Chester Morse Lake below. The trail soon turns west and is a 0.5 mile traverse with a slight up and down in elevation.
The trail then heads up towards the summit in a couple of last switchbacks.

There is a nice area to enjoy the views without scrambling up to the very top.

View of the true summit, this is a class 3-4 scramble

I was only comfortable going up about 10 ft or so.

The exposure and drop off is quite extreme.

Pano from the base of the rocky summit looking south

Mt Rainier to the far south, was covered in clouds.

 Looking west towards North Bend, Bellevue, Puget Sound and the Olympic Mtns in the far distance.

Some of the fall color, fungi and other flora we saw along the trail today:






Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Kubota Garden Walk

Not a hike, but a lovely urban walk. Mom and I went to Kubota Garden in South Seattle, a 20 acre Japanese Garden with several trails. We enjoyed the beautiful fall colors and many water features.

There were a few flowers still in bloom.