Location: White Chuck Bench Trail
Date: Saturday, April 4, 2015
Beautiful day to go out for a hike in the Snoqualmie National Forest and enjoy the Mountain Loop Highway area of the forest. Arrived at the trailhead around 9:30 AM, with no other cars in the parking lot when we first arrived. Got started hiking on the trail right away, with the dog bouncing along beside us. The trail is very well defined and starts off with a walk through some densely packed trees with a forest floor covered in moss. The day started off with lots of fog and a low cloud level, keeping most of the surrounding mountains hidden from view.
There were fallen trees across the trail in places, but crews were out clearing them on the way back in from the hike. There was one good sized bridge across a nicely flowing stream which acted as a nice place to stop and enjoy the forest for a bit.
At the far end of the trail, there are definite signs of work to extend the trail further up the river. A good cut into the side of a hill had already been completed and there were survey markers indicating where further trail extensions would be placed. The White Chuck Bench trail is planned to eventually connect to a nice parking lot and latrine located about 5 miles up river on FS-23.
We ended the evening camping a few miles up the White Chuck river from the trailhead, where the trail is eventually intended to terminate. There was a nice camping spot on the side of the FS-23 road where we setup the tent and enjoyed the afternoon sunshine. This was the first time we had used the new Tent, an REI Quarter Dome T3. It definitely kept us warm through the cool night up in the mountains. Even though we were at only an elevation of 1600 ft, there was still a bit of frost in the grass the next morning.