Today was an impulse hike, to the Henry’s Ridge area in Maple Valley. We had a tiny bit of rain overnight that pushed the smoke from the wild fires down enough that Alistaire could hike without coughing up a lung. The hot summer and continuing smoke has left us without many hikes in. However, this morning was cloudy and actually cool for a bit.
The theme was blackberries. Much of the loop was dripping in two types of them.
We parked along SE 281st Way (which has no homes on it) and started there. It is an easy entrance into the trail area, and is well-marked. We took the first trail to the right, Sting’r, and followed it through the woods.
Someone had rocked this section and the boys were very happy. First find was a “family” rock.
Not long after, Alistaire found this one.
I found this one up high, on a nurse log.
We left the trail and headed down Route 66 trail (a roadbed), to the retention ponds. One has plenty of murky water, surrounded with many birds calling. We took a break while Walker stuffed his face on berries nearby.
We walked the road bed heading back, to finish the “loop” to the next set of retention ponds.
Where we found two more painted rocks.
A log bridge, that goes over the water in wetter months, between the ponds.
It was a great quick hike. Not long. Peaceful, with lots of people out walking, and a few mountain bikers.