Hidden Hikes Near Us


Do you enjoy going on hikes and getting outside? Recently, students at Tahoma High School, Stella Barry, Sami McCallister, and Reese Brawley have been discovering hidden hikes and trails near Maple Valley. Most of our school has hiked at popular places known as Poo Poo Point, Pinnacle Peak, Rattlesnake Ledge, and more but we are spotting unpopular hikes that are worth visiting. 

Palisades trailhead is a 10.2-mile out hike in Greenwater, Enumclaw. The hike is moderately difficult but should be described more as moderately easy. It is a long hike but worth it for its beauty. The trail is open year-round for hikers, mountain bikers, snowshoers, etc. The hike contains gorgeous views and areas such as Snoquera Creek at mile 3.7, views of the White River Valley at mile 4.7, Timber Harvest at mile 5.5, and viewpoints of the valley below at mile 5.7. But a downside of the hike is there are many ticks reported to be on the trail. Hikers reported that there were so many, it seemed like they were “falling out of the sky.” So make sure to check yourself because of this. But overall the hike is a breathtaking experience and a great way to enjoy nature.

Skookum Falls is a hiking trail located in the Olympic National Forest. The trail is a moderately difficult 4.4-mile out-and-back that leads to Skookum Falls, a picturesque waterfall that drops 250 feet and is the highlight of the trail. Overall, the trail is well-maintained and offers stunning views of the surrounding forest and mountains. It has an elevation gain of 1200 feet. The trail winds through the forest, crossing several streams and offering views of the surrounding mountains. The trail is well-maintained and is suitable for hikers of all skill levels. 

A flat, beachlike trail that stretches out across the water just north of Olympia National Park is the Dungeness Spit hike. A beautiful yet hidden trail a lot of people don’t know about. To reach the long peninsula, there’s an easy hike up a hill/tiny mountain, and on the other side is a lookout of the beachfront. The trail heads back down to the beach where the peninsula stretches into the Strait of Juan de Fuca. The Dungeness Spit is actually the longest natural sand spit in the nation, measuring around 5.5 miles. This 10.2-mile total hike is considered an out-back trail that is generally easy to complete, taking an average of three hours and two minutes to complete. It may be a more popular area to the locals, but for those living in Maple Valley, this might not be one you’ve heard of. We highly recommend this trail for the great view of the ocean and if you stay for the sunset it makes the hike so much more worth it.

These hikes may not be as common as other hikes around our area, but they are all suitable for hikers of all types and skill levels and could be great ways to get outside and do physical activity while also seeing stunning views.