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Trailhead Direct to Continue to Provide Trails-to-Transit Service Through October

Transit services to the Issaquah Alps, Mount Si, and Mailbox Peak will be available until October 28 through the Trailhead Direct.

Trailhead Direct, a trails-to-transit service sponsored by King County Parks and Metro’s Community Connections program, is extending their service through the month of October! This has been made possible thanks to additional funding received from the Seattle Department of Transportation, REI Co-op and Clif Bar and Company, this service will continue to provide easy access to outdoor adventures until Sunday, October 28.

This program has provided weekend transportation to northwest Washington hiking trails since 2017. Between August and September of last year, this pilot project averaged 40 riders a day. Users of the service alleviated parking lot congestion at the trailheads and lessened the environmental impact of traveling to trails.

Margaret's Way Photo by CapnCrumples.jpeg
Visit the picturesque Margaret's Way this fall using Trailhead Direct. Photo by CapnCrumples. 

Trailhead Direct will offer three routes with service every 30 minutes this October to Mount Si, Issaquah Alps and Mailbox Peak.

The Issaquah Alps route begins in South Seattle at the Mount Baker Transit Center. There are four trailhead stops: the Margaret’s Way Trailhead, Chirico Trail - Poo Poo Point Trailhead, High School Trail and East Sunset Way Trailhead.

The Margaret’s Way Trailhead stop provides access to the Squak Mountain Trail system via the Margaret’s Way trail. Stop at the Chirico Trail – Poo Poo Point Trailhead for fall foliage and mountain views along the Chirico Trail.

High School Trail Photo by lovetheoutdoors.jpeg
 on High School Trail is great for leashed dogs and fun for the whole family. Photo by lovetheoutdoors. 

The High School Trail stop is the perfect starting point for an easier hike along the High School Trail, with the option to explore connecting trails, like the Adventure Trail. The Section Line Trail is one of several trails to choose from at the East Sunset Way Trailhead stop.

Beginning at the Sound Transit’s Capitol Hill Link light rail station, the Mount Si route offers two great trailhead stops. Tackle the 13.8-mile roundtrip hike to the summit of Mount Teneriffe at the Mount Teneriffe Trailhead stop, or hop off at the Mount Si Trailhead stop, which provides access to the popular eight-mile hike to the top of the scenic Mount Si.

Mount Teneriffe Photo by Diplomapster.jpeg
Find spectacular mountain views from the top of Mount Teneriffe. Photo by Diplomapster.

Despite only having one stop, the Mailbox Peak route beginning and ending at Twin Falls Middle School is worth using for your next trip to Mailbox Peak. Parking for this very popular trail can quickly fill up, making Trailhead Direct an excellent solution to avoid searching for a place to park.

“By 11am when we got back to the parking lot, the lot was completely full. The trailhead direct bus is a good option for folks planning for a late hike,” wrote chetanshiv in a trip report of the Mailbox Peak old trail. 

Trail to Mailbox Peak Photo by FoalOfATook.jpeg
Check out fall colors on the way up to Mailbox Peak. Photo by FoalOfATook.

Plan your next trip using Trailhead Direct by visiting the Trailhead Direct website for the full schedules for each route. If you rode the bus this season, be sure to fill out the short survey to help make the service even better. And as always, remember to write a trip report!

Check out the WTA Signpost Blog for more information about the Trailhead Direct service and how it has done in the past year.

Resources for Hiking by Bus

Before you embark on a hike by bus, remember take a look at these WTA resources to make your trip a fun and safe one.

  • Use the Ten Essentials as a checklist when packing for any hike.
  • Taking the time to make sure someone knows where you are is especially important when hiking by bus, so stay safe by filling out a Hike Itinerary Form.
  • Help keep our trails clean with these Leave No Trace tips.

For other great safety and hiking advice, check out the WTA Trail Smarts page.