Nov 24, 2008

Poo Poo Point Trail

The southwest corner of Tiger Mountain is heaven for paragliders and hang-gliders. the Squak Mountain / Tiger Mountain valley creates an uplift of warm air currents, and a couple of cliffs off Tiger Mountain have been transformed into launch and landing zones. On a sunny, calm afternoon, you will see a plethora of airborne gliders parading the Issaquah area, all launched from Tiger Mountain.

The launch area is called Poo Poo Point, and I haven't yet figured out how it got its name (that MUST be a fascinating story). The trailhead is located off Issaquah-Hobart road a couple miles south of downtown Issaquah. The trail is obvious, and its a steep, 1600 foot climb in about a mile and a half. Apparently gliders with their gear can make the climb in 45 minutes; I struggled to do it in a little over an hour. And little gear to speak of. Argh.

There are two launch areas at the top. The south launch area opens up to an in-your-face view of Mt. Rainier, and several hundred feet beyond that is the north launch area (the main one), with views of Belleview, Lake Sammamish, and Mount Baker in the distance. Beyond that you can go to West Tiger; I ventured about a half mile further before time constraints forced me back.

This hike is similar in nature to Little Si or Rattlesnake Ledge, although I would argue the views at Rattlesnake Ledge are better. An excellent trail and views for a short exercise session.

Mount Rainier

Mount Baker

Lake Sammamish