The Japanese Gulch Trail is only about 15 minutes from my house. That's why it is surprising that I had never been here before!
It has around 14 miles of trails that are used by hikers and mountain bikers. If you don't like to get muddy, find a different trail. We encountered quite a bit of mud, several washouts and a few places that required sliding on your backside.
This is one of the washouts that we encountered shortly after leaving the parking area on 5th St. This next picture was a steep hill that had a rope to assist you up.
There are a lot of intersecting trails and I would suggest printing a map, so that you have a general idea of where you are going. The trails are not named or marked in most cases, but the map can help you to keep your general sense of direction.
We encountered several bikers and hikers on the trail, but we were mostly by ourselves. I would imagine that this is a pretty packed place on the weekends (especially summer).
|Bleeding Hearts beginning to bloom|
|Salmon Berry blossoms|
|Huckleberries were starting to blossom as well|
Some fungus photos:
One of the steep parts of the trail
|Catching some air on the way down|
|A view of the Puget Sound from one of the higher spots on the trail|
|A bridge that crossed the drainage creek|