“A rolling climb that takes runners past nice views, some of which are close to the summit.
— Eric Ashley
A Discover Pass is required to park at the Wildcat Trailhead.
This is a multi-use trail open to pedestrians, mountain bikers, equestrians, and dirt bike traffic in both directions. Sight lines are limited, so use caution.
This trail will give you a steady workout. Be careful of the footing, as most of it is pretty stable, but a little gravelly.
The first mile passes quickly along gently rolling terrain. This easy going lasts until just past the first road crossing (with GM-41), where the trail begins to steepen. Ahead, a craggy rock face requires a little footwork, especially if it's wet.
The trail levels off briefly before diving, crossing the road, and reaching a bridge. On the other side, the climb continues. Fortunately, occasional level sections provide breaks from the ups. This section of trail is generally wide as it wanders beneath the trees.
Two road crossings pass by before the intersection with the Beaver Pond Trail
. The trail dips for a bit and then returns to steady-and-easy climbing along a well-benched, gravelly section. The trail eventually opens onto the top of a clearcut, where runners are greeted by a broad view of Seattle and Mt. Rainier. This section is particularly enjoyable and worth lingering in.
Traveling along the edge of this clearcut is undemanding until a small chunky section on the descent. Head right on the road (GM-17) before heading into the woods for a pleasant climb.
Very soon, pop back on the road before entering a replanted forest. This gravelly section climbs steadily as it follows an entrenched channel. A final road crossing skirts the edge of a clearcut before the trail ends by intersecting the Vista Trail
and Gold Creek Trail
Note that in the winter and after rains, the trail may have large puddles and even running water.