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Upcoming events (4)
Let's go Ghost Hunting at a fall favorite. This is a fairly, easy stroll through the grounds of a now defunct State Mental Hospital. if it has been wet, you will encounter sloppy paths at time. wear appropriate footwear.
Length 3-5.0 miles, roundtrip
Elevation Gain: 50 ft
No Pass required.
Dogs allowed on leash.
No children under 12 years of age
Once the largest facility for mentally ill people in Washington State, Northern State Mental Hospital was a town unto itself. The hospital was established in 1909 after the over-crowded conditions at Western State Hospital came under public criticism. Northern State’s grand opening happened in 1912.
The Olmstead Brothers, whose father was famous for having designed New York City’s Central Park, designed the landscape at Northern State. Renowned architects Saunders and Lawton designed the hospital’s buildings. They worked in close collaboration with Northern State’s farm superintendent to create a self-sustaining and therapeutic colony for the mentally ill. The hospital site included patient and staff housing, a water reservoir, sewage system, lumber mill, quarry, steam plant, greenhouse, canning facilities, gymnasium, library, laundry, dining room, bakery, dairy, and 700-acre farm for growing vegetables and raising livestock. A cemetery was also included in the site plan.
At one time in the 1950s about 2,700 patients lived at Northern State. This was the full capacity of the hospital according to the superintendent at the time, but he was still being pressured to take on more patients. The public perception of mental hospitals began to change in the 1970s, and Northern State Mental Hospital closed its doors in 1976 after the State Legislature cut off funding. Some of the buildings, including the farm’s housing ward, have since been torn down. A few of the remaining buildings are currently being used for job corps projects and drug rehabilitation.
The active buildings at Northern State are off-limits to members of the public, but much of the former property is now a part of Northern State Recreation Area. It is located just north of the Skagit River near the town of Sedro-Woolley. The recreation area has an extensive trail system that will take you through wide open pastures, along forested lanes, and past the still standing barns, milking shed, cannery, and other structures used during the hospital’s self-sustaining past. You can also visit the old cemetery, which is the resting place of at least 1,500 people.
FROM THE PARKING AREA:
From the parking lot, walk about .15 miles north across the field.Turn right and walk about 130 feet.Turn left up the hill toward the buildings.After about 158 feet you will come to a clearing of the barn and milking complex.View the buildings, then walk back down the hill.Turn right onto the gravel road, walk about 1,000 feet.You will see a crumbling brick building on the right. Turn right onto a footpath towards the building. View the structures.Find the trail on the west side of the buildings. Follow it through a mix of woods and fields.After about .35 miles, cross creek.Walk along gravel road about .28 miles. On the left there is a barn.From the barn, walk about .32 miles, to a junction. At the junction, go right. Walk to the end of the path, about .3 miles, to see the wellhouse.Follow the path back to creek crossing. Turn left on the gravel road.Walk about .36 miles to the slaughterhouse.Walk northeast across the field to reach a barn.Walk back down the trail from the barn and south to the barn and milking complex.Find the gravel road, follow it northeast.On the left will be the cemetery.Go back along the gravel road, through the barn and milking complex to reach the path back toward the parking area.
THINGS TO SEE:
Barn & Milking Complex
Cannery & Root Barns
From Burlington, drive about 7 miles east on Highway 20. Turn north on Helmick Road. Drive about .3 miles. Turn left into Northern State Recreation Area parking lot.
Let's meet at the Edmonds Library and go for a walk searching for the scarecrows of Edmonds Scarecrow Festival.
Masks are required on all humans attending that have not been vaccinated. Leashes are required on all dogs, regardless of vaccine history.
Scoop the Poop.
Plan on 2-3 miles distance in about an hour/hour and a half.
This route is paved sidewalk. Wear appropriate footwear.
It will be getting dark so light up yourself and your dog so you are visible. There are some great clip on lights that attach easily to dog collars and zipper pulls. Flashlights optional as we will be on lighted streets.
This week we will hike some trails in Forest Park and then stroll through some neighboring streets to Rucker Mansion (we don't actually walk through the mansion as it is occupied). There are views and mansions along the way. The neighborhood usually decorates for Halloween, hopefully, we aren't too early. This is an urban hike, plan on 4-6 miles with the possibility of lunch afterwards.
"Everett - Rucker mansion - The Rucker mansion is haunted by Mrs. Rucker, who committed suicide by jumping from the bedroom window on the top floor. Sometimes she can be heard playing the grand piano when no one is in the room. "
This 197-acre wooded park is Everett's oldest and largest park. It is home to the Parks and Recreation Department administration offices, recreation office, Swim Center, playground, picnic shelter , wooded trails and Animal Farm.
802 E. Mukilteo Blvd.
Everett, WA 98203
Where a lot of ghost towns require you get to get off the beaten path, Coal Creek earns a spot on this list for its easy access and easy trails suitable for most ages. The trailhead is located off of Exit 10 on I-405 near the Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park.
This is a mostly flat hike for the first half, and then transitions down to a lower trail that is a little more rugged.
This is about 6 miles RT (you can turn around at the halfway point and return to car, otherwise you need to stick with the group the entire way).
No Passes or Permits required (Bellevue city park)
Dogs allowed on leash.
Proper footwear and attire required.
Bring water and snacks
We will start from Red Town Center parking lot on Cougar Mountain.
Red Town Trailhead/east side: Take exit 10 off I-405 for Coal Creek Parkway, heading east. Continue for 1.0 mile on Coal Creek Parkway, then turn left onto Forest Drive. Continue for 2.1 miles on Forest Drive, then turn right onto Lakemont Boulevard. Continue on Lakemont Boulevard for 0.5 miles and turn left into the Red Town Trailhead parking lot.
The lot fills up quickly on the weekends; plan to arrive before 9:00 a.m. on a sunny weekend day. There are two porta potties near the information kiosk and space for roughly 40 cars. Please be cautious when crossing Lakemont Boulevard to access Coal Creek Trail; there isn’t a pedestrian crosswalk connecting the parking lot to the start of the trail.