Falling for Color: Five Fall Family Hikes in Greater Seattle
Written by Lauren Braden
Location: Mount Baker Snoqualmie National Forest, Highway 2
Distance: 6 miles round trip, 400 feet elevation gain
Check conditions: Skykomish Ranger District, 360-677-2414
Directions: Drive Highway 2 east from Skykomish 1.8 miles, then turn right onto the Foss River Road (#68). At 1.2 miles, keep right at the fork. At 3.6 miles, take a left onto Tonga Ridge Road (#6830). At 7 miles from that junction, turn right (#6830 or #310) and continue 1.4 miles to the trailhead.
Description: Known as the easiest ridge walk on the west slope of the Cascades, Tonga Ridge is also one of the most popular in late summer. Fall will afford you some solitude to enjoy the fiery huckleberry and heather meadows in quiet peace. Hike to Sawyer Pass or as far as your kids wish, then turn around. Keep an eye out for deer, and don’t miss the gorgeous views into the Cascades on a clear day.
Photo credit: La Catolique/flickr Creative Commons