Mount Pilchuck

The forecast said clear(ish) skies yesterday, so I made plans to check off a bucket list hike: Mount Pilchuck. Of course, this meant that the morning was full of cloudy skies and heavy rain. Despite being of the big names out here in the Pacific Northwest, Mount Pilchuck is far enough away from the city that it isn’t always overcrowded on the trail. The hike is less than 3 miles up, but comes with an elevation gain of almost 2500 feet and it has some of the most unique footpaths of any hike I’ve done so far.

The Drive There

The first five miles to the parking lot are very potholed and took a fair amount of maneuvering, although I’m sure a low clearance vehicle would be able to (slowly) make the drive up to the top. The last couple of miles are very well-paved and lead up to the gravel parking lot–there were only a handful of cars when we arrived around 8:30am.

Other things to note: This parking lot requires a Northwest Forest Pass, and it should be noted that there are no day passes available at the trailhead. The vault toilet at the parking lot is so clean!

Continue reading

Ensign Peak – Salt Lake City

Here are some pictures from Ensign Peak, the very short 0.8-mile round trip hike up to the famous hill where Brigham Young and his crew surveyed the valley and made a plan for the city. From our Airbnb downtown, it was only about $8 to take a Lyft to the trailhead in a very residential neighborhood. It’s only a 350-foot elevation gain to the top, but since the trail starts at over 5000 feet elevation, you get pretty spectacular views of the valley below. Although there were quite a few people on the trail and enjoying the views from the top, it wasn’t overly crowded. It was a perfect place to see the sunset (and, had we stayed a couple more hours, I’m sure it would have been a great place to see the stars).