Child Friendly Hiking Trails - TIGER MOUNTAIN HIKING

Hiking is one of the best ways to get in shape. In addition to hiking, a great workout routine in the gym will improve your strength, stability and resilience on the uneven terrain of the trails. I am a master personal trainer, registered dietitianweight loss specialist and mountaineering fitness expert. Let me know if I can help.

Most trailheads require either or a Discover Pass or NW Forest Pass. Be sure to obtain one before your trip.

Tiger Mountain State Forest, 13,000 acres of protected forests, recreation areas and managed state trust lands, encompasses some of the state's most heavily-used trails. Tiger Mountain is one of the peaks that comprise the "Issaquah Alps," geologic remnants of an ancient mountain range. Other peaks include Cougar and Squak mountains. The highest of the "Tigers" is East Tiger at 3,004 feet. The forest on Tiger Mountain was clear-cut before World War II and again in the mid-1970s, and a fire lookout stood on the summit of East Tiger from 1945 through 1967. Today, Tiger Mountain is a "working forest" managed by the Department of Natural Resources with more than 14,000 acres of forested land that includes the Tradition Plateau Natural Resource Conservation Area.

Adventure Trail

You can park near Issaquah High School Trailhead on Second Avenue Southeast and started on the High School Trail, elevation about 400 feet. The trail is actually an old road known to some as the Puget Power Road. You also can pick up the road behind the school.

For an easy hike with very little elevation gain, start from the High School Trail and turn off -- left -- on the .9-mile Adventure Trail, just before you get to the junction for the Section Line and Poo Poo Point trails at the power lines. Hike the Adventure Trail to the .5-mile Wetlands Trail and the .8-mile Bus Trail that leads to the Tradition Lake Plateau and trailhead parking. These are short trails and the elevation gain is roughly 100 feet. You can take a more direct route by hiking directly to the Bus Trail from the Gas Line Trail at the power lines.

Driving Directions: From Seattle, take Interstate 90 east and take the Front Street exit in Issaquah. Follow Front Street through town and continue to Bush Street, turn left and continue a couple of blocks to Issaquah High School on Second Avenue Southeast. Go past the school a few blocks and look carefully for a small parking area with room for a few cars on the south (left) side.

Tiger Mountain - PooPoo Point via Chirico

This field serves as the landing area for paragliders and hang-gliders that take off from Poo Poo Point. The Point’s name came from the logging days when the air whistles from the steam engines were used to communicate between loggers, making sounds similar to poooo…..pooooo. Hang glider enthusiasts built the trail, which goes to the top of Poo Poo Point. The trail’s first open area, a quarter of a mile from the top, reveals a spectacular view of Mount Rainier. At the summit, which faces northwest, you will be rewarded with views of Lake Sammamish, Seattle, Mt. Baker and the Olympics.

On a nice day, chances are you’ll see hang-gliders and paragliders flying in the air. Take the kids on a warm day for lunch at the top to watch the paragliders take off.

Driving Directions: I-90, exit 17 south, go through Issaquah on Front Street, which turns into Issaquah-Hobart Road. 3 miles South of town you’ll see an open field on the left, with the parking lot for the paragliders’ field. The trailhead is across the field. Watch out for paragliders landing!

Tradition Lake Plateau Trailhead (High Point) Driving Directions: I-90 east to exit 20 High Point. Turn right (west) on the road that runs parallel to the highway to a gate. Park outside if you plan to be gone past 7 p.m., when the gate is closed. Otherwise, continue on the road .4 mile to the Tradition Plateau trailhead and parking area, elevation 500 feet. There are restrooms adjacent to the parking lot.

Tiger Mountain - West Tiger 3 Peak

West Tiger 3 is the most popular hike on Tiger Mountain and one of the most challenging. The hike is 6 miles round trip, about 2000 feet elevation gain and takes 2-4 hours depending on fitness level. 

Directions: Go to the Tradition Lake Plateau Trailhead (High Point).

I-90 east to exit 20 High Point. Turn right (west) on the road that runs parallel to the highway to a gate. Park outside if you plan to be gone past evening when the gate is closed. Otherwise, continue on the road .4 mile to the Tradition Plateau trailhead and parking area, elevation 500 feet. There are restrooms adjacent to the parking lot.

From the restroom, follow the sign toward the trails. Begin walking on the flat Around the Lake Trail. Look for the junction of West Tiger 3 (WT3) Trail. It will be on your left.

Tiger Mountain Nook Trail

The rocks are huge, dark and mysteriously caved and covered with fern. This is perfect for beginners and gives children a destination to look forward to.

Directions: Go to the Tradition Lake Plateau Trailhead (High Point).
I-90 east to exit 20 High Point. Turn right (west) on the road that runs parallel to the highway to a gate. Park outside if you plan to be gone past 7 p.m., when the gate is closed. Otherwise, continue on the road .4 mile to the Tradition Plateau trailhead and parking area, elevation 500 feet. There are restrooms adjacent to the parking lot.

From the restroom, follow the sign toward the trails. Begin walking on the flat Around the Lake Trail. From here it’s about its about 1.5 miles to the rock caves. At the junction of West Tiger 3 (WT3) Trail, bear right to Bus Trail; go just past a small bridge until you see a sign on the left for Nook Trail.

Head up the trail. Eventually the trail crosses with the Section Line Trail (an old logging road) that goes to the West (but to get to Talus keep going up the trail not onto the Section Line). The caves are only about.1 mile from this point.

Now you have several options for your return. You can return via the way you came up, of course. Or if you want to go to the summit of WT3 the Nook Trail reaches the summit of WT3 in less than 1-3/4 miles. You can go this way and return to the parking lot via the WT3 trail.

Or go back down to the Section Line Trail. It drops down to the Bonneville power line. Then you would turn East (right) onto the Bus Trail. Continue east and you’re back where you started.

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