Squak Mountain East Ridge Access Trail 08-17-2020

East Ridge Trail…

Afternoon hike up to the SE Summit of Squak Mountain. My 3rd of the three summits on Squak and making my way through the Issaquah Alps 24.  Summitted Squak Mountain SE Peak and SE Peak #2.  This trail is actually quite a lovely gradual incline up the East side of the Mountain.  Beginning in the neighborhood, the trail ascends several ravines looping and clinging to the edges of the hill, with ever-increasing grade of incline.  The trail is nearly all forested, so expect no views, but lovely and lush valleys of Sword Ferns and surprising large fir trees.  As the grade continues past the Sycamore access trail, the trees begin to thin, as the switchbacks increase as you gain elevation along the ridge.  Actually I found this to be a pleasant trail, with peekaboo views along the Issaquah Hobart road, and across to Poo Poo Point at Tiger Mountain.  The trail to access the SE summit is a boot path to the left at about 1400 feet elevation prior to Phil’s Creek Trail.  The trail is faint, obfuscated by overgrown Sword Fern, Salal, and Oregon Grape. 

If you want this summit, earn it – it’s not hard, but challenging to follow.  I contemplated this after the Central and West summits the week prior, but the light was fading.  I would prefer to not do this in the dark.  There was a small register in a blue cylinder with the title ” Squaktour”.  About 15 parties signed in 2020, indicating this is a less frequently trodden path.  About 6 miles and 2000ish feet in total up and down gain.  93+ degrees did not make this easy, however, it is mostly in the shade.  Super, great conditioner hike for those who live nearby and want to avoid traffic on more popular trails.  Just do it!


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