Secret Trail Unveiled
On Saturday, the Jennifer Dunn trailhead and the Beckler Peak Trail #1240 were officially dedicated by the Forest Service and is open for hikers!
In the January-February issue of Washington Trails, I hinted about a "top secret new trail outside of Skykomish" that was being built. Since then, many hikers have tried to get me to spill the beans about the destination. As I was sworn to secrecy, I've tried my darnedest to keep the details to myself.
Now I am pleased to be able to tell you all about the new trail. On Saturday, the Jennifer Dunn trailhead and the Beckler Peak Trail #1240 were officially dedicated by the Forest Service and is open for hikers!
The Beckler Peak trail off of Highway 2, just east of the Skykomish Ranger Station and gains 2000 feet over the course of four miles.
At the Saturday trailhead dedication, former Undersecretary of Agriculture Mark Rey was present, as were family members of former Representative Dunn, who was instrumental in getting the Wild Sky Wilderness bill approved. The trail is adjacent to the new wilderness and hikers look into the heart of the Wild Sky from the summit.
Robert Iwamoto, Forest Supervisor, Skykomish District Ranger Joe Neal, Skykomish District Trails Specialist Tom Davis, and Gary Paull, Wilderness and Trails Coordinator for the Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest were there to unveil the new trailhead sign. Regan Dunn cut the ribbon, and the Dunn family walked a portion of the trail – the first official hikers of trail #1240!
Fall is a great time to explore this new trail. In a couple of weeks, the beginning portion of the trail is full of bright yellow big leaf maple, and a thick cover of alder leaves that skitter and fly when hikers kick through them. An old logging landing is full of bright red vine maple and huckleberry shrubs. The trail then dives deep into an ancient virgin forest of silver fir, mountain hemlock, western redcedar, Douglas-fir, Alaskan yellow-cedar and noble fir. Near the top, brilliant, white granite sparkling with mica adorn the green slopes.
From the summit are views down to the Skykomish Valley, the west summit of Beckler Peak, Mounts Index and Baring, the Monte Cristo Range, Alpine Baldy, and Glacier Peak. In autumn, the slopes below Beckler, recovering from past logging, are awash in color. Even on a cloudy day the forest takes on a mysterious glow, and clouds swirl and sweep across the summit.
WTA is very excited to see a new trail in this area, and thanks Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest for making it a reality.
>> Hike It!