Leaving Kirkland, Washington on the morning of 7 August 2018, Zosia
Zgolak and I stopped near the town of North Bend to hike up Mount
Teneriffe. I first became aware of this peak when I climbed up
nearby Mount Si in 2013.
Although Mount Teneriffe is higher, it is still overshadowed by Mount
Si's immense popularity. That may change now that there is a
revamped hiker-friendly trail and a newly-built trailhead.
From I-90, take Exit 32 and head north on 436th Avenue SE for about 1
kilometre. Turn left at the T-intersection with SE North Bend Way
and drive northwest for about 500 metres. Turn right at the
intersection with SE Mount Si Road and drive across the bridge over
Middle Fork Snoqualmie River. The Mount Teneriffe trailhead and
parking lot (Discover Pass required; $11.50 USD per day or $35.00 USD for
an annual pass) are located on the north side of the road about 4.4
kilometres beyond the bridge.
From the trailhead, we followed a well-maintained trail which is
essentially an old exploration road that winds up the forested slopes
between Mount Teneriffe and Mount Si. The trail climbs fairly
steadily for the first three-quarters of the ascent, but the grade is
never uncomfortably steep. Most junctions are signed (keep right at
any unsigned junctions), and route-finding was generally not an issue for
us. Although most of our hike was spent in viewless forest, this
was not entirely unwelcomed given the very warm weather we had.
Occasional breaks in the trees nevertheless granted us some views of
Mount Rainier, Mount Si and even the summit block of Mount Teneriffe.
We eventually reached a high col about one kilometre northwest of Mount
Teneriffe's summit. The trail becomes a foot path at this point,
and we followed this over a forested hump before emerging from the trees
just a short distance below the summit. We finished the ascent with
a short and easy scramble.
Being a weekday, we pretty much had the summit all to ourselves. A
trail runner showed up a few minutes after us, but she did not even
bother to climb the last few metres to tag the actual summit. She
stayed only long enough to take a few photos with her phone before
turning around and disappearing into the forest. We lingered for a
bit longer, but the unbearably hot sun prompted us to get moving as well.
Shortly after leaving the summit, we were surprised to encounter a lone
mountain goat on the trail in the forest. Unlike the fearless goats
we met on Scotchman
Peak in Idaho a few days earlier, this goat was much shyer and
quickly darted away before I had a chance to snap a picture. Zosia
and I took that as a good omen, and the remainder of our descent back the
way we came was long but uneventful.
||After a long climb through the forest,
Zosia hikes past some bluffs which help break up the monotony.
A break in the trees reveals majestic Mount Rainier
about 70 kilometres to the south.