Hike Mt. Si

Washington Mt Si Trail

Added by Sarah Brogden-Thome

  • Although this is a fairly trafficked trail, it's one you should definitely do at least once
  • This is a great training ground if you're preparing for Rainier over the summer
  • This hike is 8 miles roundtrip with an elevation gain of 3,150 feet
  • Duration: 3-4 hours

Mount Si is probably one of the most well trekked hikes around the Seattle area, but one that any hiker-new to the game or an old pro-should experience as least once. I usually use it as a starter hike to kick start the season and highly recommend you get an early start on this one as the further along in the spring and summer you get and the later you take off, the more crowded the trail becomes. On the real, I’m not even joking at its popularity as it’s hiked by more than 100,000 people every year so you can be rest assured that chances are you’ll enjoy this hike!

Now let’s get right down to business-this hike is the sweet spot for all kinds of hikers in the sense that you’re going to be gaining over 3,000 feet in about four miles. You want those glutes and hammies to feel the burn? This is your main squeeze.

The trail itself is very easy to follow and you’ll immediately begin with a series of switchbacks that will continue for the remainder of the hike. The ascent is very easy-peasy the first mile ½ and you’ll come to a flat path across Snag Flat that some use as a quick spot to take a breather. Once you get through the Snag Flat, you’ll get right back to those switchbacks and the incline up the mountain will become pretty steady so I’d recommend finding a pace that is comfortable, put on some jams, or chat up your friends and family that are with you as you’ll be zig zaggin’ with this ascent for the next almost 3 miles. When you get to about 3 ½ miles the tree cover will break up a bit and give you the first glimpses at the view you’re going to be seeing from the top. The last little quarter mile to the top is a bit of a grind as the trail gets slightly steeper, and at this point I’ve turned the volume up on my music so can drown out my own breathing, but your views are getting sweeter and sweeter. You’ll start to come across boulders the closer you get to the top and out of nowhere you see a hillside full of rocks and boulders. As soon as you see those immediately turn to your right and there she is-Mount Rainier in all her glory staring smack dab back at you!

Most people will stop here to grab a quick bite but don’t be discouraged away from continuing up the side of the cliff to explore a little bit further. The trail will wind through rocks and then back into a brief stretch of forest before it breaks off where it’ll overlook the Snoqualmie Valley, downtown Seattle, and the Olympics. If you’re feeling especially ambitious you can continue on up to the true summit of Mt. Si to Haystack. If you’re afraid of heights like some of us, ahem…this girl…, the shaking of the knees makes it a bit more difficult once you get going but rest assured the views will be grander and there’s just something about facing your fears that feels oh so good.

While this trail is very well traversed, it’s definitely one to add to your hiking to-do list for spring, summer, or fall. This hike is kid friendly, dog friendly, great for those who are training for Rainier or those that just want something fun to do in the great outdoors, and even a great spot to go for a date. Wait, you don’t take your dates on hikes?? Go get ‘em!

Pack List

  • Discover Pass required
  • Trail Shoes or Hiking Boots
  • Backpack
  • Snacks
  • Water
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Activities:

Hiking

Skill Level:

Intermediate

Season:

Year Round

Trail Type:

Out-and-Back

Distance:

8 Miles

Elev. Gain:

3150 Feet

Rating:

Features:

Dog Friendly
Forest
Scenic

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How to Get There

8 months ago

Really Great Little Hike

Being a couple of idiots from Kansas on vacation we came a little over prepared and naive to what was about to unfold. The highest I have ever been out doors (this isn't innuendo) is hurricane ridge over in the olympics but I drove up that and walked around, this was a whole different beast. A beautiful trail of non stop switchbacks, it was soggy from the rain but my oh my was it still breathtaking. At the top although I wanted to my girlfriend did not want to summit the haystack which was probably for the best seeing as it was beginning to sleet. Although I missed out on the normally amazing view which were shrouded in clouds and mist it made for an awesome atmosphere. Overall it wasn't too busy but the weather and the fact that it was a weekday probably contributed to that. Great hike can't wait to do it again

8 months ago

9 months ago

Great Hike Near Seattle

I just did this hike yesterday. I spent a total of 4 hours on the trail and a little over an hour in the car, making it a perfect hike to do on a weekend morning. The trail is well maintained, travels through some beautiful forest, and rewards you with sweeping views when you reach the top.

9 months ago

about 2 years ago

This is a hike is buuuuuusy, due to its close proximity to Seattle. Go early to avoid most of the crowds.

about 2 years ago

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