“This journey combines many area highlights: Spray Park & Falls, Seattle Park, views and wildflowers.”
— Megan W
River/Creek · Views · Waterfall · Wildflowers · Wildlife
Starting from the junction of the Wonderland Trail
near the southern end of Mowich Lake, follow the Spray Park
trail south, contouring around Fay Peak on mostly level terrain. This densely forested area persists across Lee Creek and past the Eagle Cliff area. Turn east and before tackling the grueling switchbacks along Grant Creek, visit Spray Falls
via the short Spray Falls Spur
. The reward for surmounting these intense switchbacks is the magnificent wildflower meadows of Spray Park. Plan to dawdle here for some time, enjoying the views of Rainier and the huge vistas.
Cross over the rocky ridge separating Spray Park
from Seattle Park, following cairns if the weather is bad. Use care crossing the snow fields. Descend the mountain's flank crossing more islands of trees and scree. Upon leaving the snow behind and reaching the braided headwaters of Marmot Creek, you may opt to rest awhile in pretty Seattle Park. Continue north, switchbacking steeply downhill beside Marmot Creek.
Finally, this plunge abates when Cataract Creek appears. Travel more mellow terrain through Cataract Valley with it's multiple mini-falls tumbling down the hillsides. The trail becomes increasingly overgrown here, although there are many varieties of wildflowers and berries to enjoy. The Spray-Seattle Park Trail ends at an intersection with the Wonderland Trail
where the Cataract Creek empties into Carbon River. Just a short distance to the east on the Wonderland Trail
is the bouncy suspension bridge.
Flora & Fauna
Mountain goats, black bear, fox, deer, marmots, eagles. Lupine, paintbrush, etc.