This sucker has been on the list since last August, when I discovered it after hiking Annette Lake. The goal was to get the kids on the trail last September until I fractured my foot. When my foot was back in business, it was winter and the trail had snow. And then we were going to go last week, on Friday morning. That didn’t happen either. Friday morning we made the heart-wrenching decision to say goodbye to Moose. (I can’t write that without tearing up.) Our wonderful vet came over—hiking in the morning wasn’t an option anymore.
After our vet left, it was close to noon. The plan was to go strawberry picking at 3pm with friends. There wasn’t enough time to squeeze in Asahel Curtis. But I needed to get out and away from my emotions. I figured we’d hit the strawberry fields earlier than planned. I went to their website to see if they wanted cash or card, only to see that they closed eight minutes earlier—they had been picked out. Score for us! Kind of, not really. We were looking forward to going. But this now meant we could hike. And it worked out better to reschedule for our strawberry picking friends.
Asahel Curtis is about 45 minutes from home. After ditching the strawberry picking plans and quickly making hiking plans, I fed the kiddos lunch before we left at 1pm for the trail. I never go hiking in the afternoons. I’m a morning, before the crowds and heat, kind of person. Turns out I am totally wrong with those assumptions. Parking was a breeze and we only passed two other groups on the trail, an elderly couple finishing as we started and three college-aged kiddos who zoomed past us as we were stopped mid-trail with the kiddos. And heat-wise, although it was close to 80 degrees, the shade from all the trees kept us nice and cool. Perhaps afternoon hiking should become a thing… after this heat wave thing ends. It’s 91 degrees today. That’s a nope.
The kiddos were amped. Having a home morning—where I had them stay upstairs and play Minecraft while our vet was here—made for some energetic kiddos. They needed to get their hike on, even if they didn’t know this. They humored me and let me take a photo at the start of the hike before we ventured onto the short trail. WTA has it at 0.5 miles but my Apple Watch clocked it at 0.83 miles. Perhaps WTA doesn’t count the lead into trail from the parking lot? Which has a beautiful waterfall. I don’t think the kiddos even noticed it at first, as they darted across the bridge. I’m a sucker for bridges, and there are two right at the start. Followed by wide dirt stairs, lined with logs. After crossing those, the start of the Asahel Curtis Nature Trail begins. I suppose this is where it is 0.5 miles. It’s a loop, and we chose to head right after some discussion.
Waterfall and bridge kiddos, and an attempt at a selfie… it’s hard to get Maive in there while she’s on my back. But she’s there!
The trail is easy, with a few feet of elevation, 180 feet according to the WTA description. The forest is amazing. It’s an old-growth forest, which is totally obvious with the massive trees everywhere. I know absolutely nothing about tree ages, but I would take a totally uneducated guess that some of those trees are more than 500-years-old. Which means they’re probably only about 100-years-old since I know nothing.
The kiddos climbed on some boulders, traversed downed trees, and jumped around all over the trail. Because, energy. Thankfully it was only our group around. I think my favorite is the large tree that is down, lying across the trail and taking up one of the benches. That tree lived life on its own terms. The other fun downed (massive) tree, crosses the trail also, leaving room underneath to walk. The kiddos had a great time taking photos under that sucker.
We noticed several mushrooms growing all over and enjoyed the lush greenery that isn’t trees. It’s a perfect, quick (well an hour with seven kiddos quick) trail right off the 90. The only downer is the sound of the poor man’s ocean never goes away, even at the furthest point away from the 90.
Random trail photos.
We made it back to the parking lot and left for frozen yogurt in North Bend. Laine wanted to loop the trail again but was outvoted. We run a democracy around here. Being outvoted worked out though… we scored free frozen yogurt!
Because it was the last day of school in North Bend, a local real estate agency was picking up the tab from 2-4pm, for anyone who wanted frozen yogurt. I had no idea until I went to pay, and the young kid at the counter said it was covered. We made it by 15 minutes. If we had looped again, we would have missed out. Which would have been fine. But hey, free frozen yogurt for six of us?! I’ll happily take it! Thanks to whichever real estate agency footed the bill!
Free frozen yogurt. Score!
Driving home from North Bend, we went the back roads. I usually do; I like to see the herd of elk if they’re out. And they were! Some of them. It wasn’t the whole crew but enough to enjoy. We decided to swing by Snoqualmie Falls after seeing the elk. It’s absolutely beautiful! And I’m ashamed to say we have never taken the kiddos to see the falls. Technically Blaise and Laine have seen them, but they were so young there’s no chance they’d remember. It’s one of those gems that’s so close that we take it for granted. But not everybody else, it was crowded. Friday afternoon and all. The kiddos actually stopped and watched the falls in unison, for a few minutes even. I was surprised. Usually one or two are going this way or that way. Even Maive got in on the action.
The best part of the falls stop, was as we were walking away, Laine said, “That waterfall is so pretty!” To which Baby asks, “What waterfall?” Hahahaha. Baby is Baby, as we say around here.