Showing posts from April, 2015

Wanderings: Cedar Butte (Olallie State Park)

Last Friday was a gloriously warm, sunny spring day here in Western Washington - a perfect day for exploring a new trail. My husband and I headed out to North Bend to tackle the hike up to Cedar Butte (or Ceder Butt, if you're with the US Geodetic Survey of 1937... but we'll get to that later!).

We took I-90 out to North Bend, and then parked at the trailhead at Iron Horse State Park.  Now this was a bit confusing: although we parked at Iron Horse, I'm almost certain that the actual Cedar Butte trail is located in Olallie State Park; at least that's what the Olallie web site indicates. The trailhead parking lot was also right across the street from the Cedar River Watershed Education Center, and the trail borders the Cedar River Watershed itself. There's a whole lot going on in this little corner of North Bend!

So, we set out from the Iron Horse State Park parking lot, and headed up to the John Wayne Trail, which is a wide graveled trail more than 100 miles long th…

Wanderings: Saint Edward State Park

Dynamic, ephemeral, ever-shifting, ever-changing, blooming, sprouting, dying and living. These qualities of the natural world ensure that no single encounter will be the same as the last. You can return time and again to the same trail, look out the same window, walk the same route through your neighborhood, and -- if you're tuned in to your surroundings -- each experience will be completely different.

Saint Edward State Park is my favorite place to visit and spend time in nature. I've been there more times than I can count, have hiked every trail more than once (although I do have a favorite I tend to stick with), and yet with every visit I find something new to appreciate, or am able to experience the park in a new way. And my most recent visit was no exception.

Last weekend, feeling we needed some exercise, my husband and I headed over to Saint Edward for a late afternoon walk in the forest. Pulling into the full parking lot and taking in the crowded seminary grounds, it wa…