Tuesday, June 13, 2023

Exploring the Countryside East and West of Seattle (North Bend, Gig Harbor)

We explore the Seattle area starting at North Bend, at the foot of the mountains east of Seattle, and working our way to the towns and islands west of the city.  Driving up to North Bend, we get fabulous views of the mountains covered by stormy (and occasionally sunny) skies.

North Bend was founded in 1909 and was made famous by the television series Twin Peaks.  The city is full of hiking and biking trails and contains the most popular hiking trail in Washington State, the Mount Si Trail, an 8-mile round trip path with over 4,000 feet (1,220 meters) of elevation change.  The city is 30 minutes from Seattle (to the west) and 20 minutes from The Summit at Snoqualmie Ski Resort (to the east).

Mountain views everywhere

Beautiful streams run through the mountains and the parks and along the trails.

The stream runs through it

On the other side of Seattle, Gig Harbor gives a completely different feeling.  Croatian and Scandinavian settlers brought businesses to the town and started the commercial fishing industry which still thrives today.  In addition to the commercial fishing, the water is now used for recreation, with national champion canoe and kayak racing teams located here and vacationers from all over.

Gig Harbor on the water

Borrow a life jacket (return when done)

Driving around the community, we find great views everywhere.

Around Gig Harbor

Two places, North Bend and Gig Harbor, on opposite sides of Seattle, represent completely different lifestyles and geography.  This is quite an area!

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