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A Summer Adventure

A Summer Adventure

If you are looking for something fun to do on a hot (very hot) summer day, a trip to Hanging Gardens in the Green River Gorge is one of those off-the-beaten Path adventures.

Hungry Beaver

Hungry Beaver

Hungry beaver along the Green River…

Summer Swimming Hole

Summer Swimming Hole

Where the trail meets the river a giant rock spirals out of the deep green water like a whale.  White foam speckles the surface of the deep green color of the water.  At low water in July and August a rocky beach frames a deep green pool beneath the Whale rock.  A large flat rock sits in the middle of the pool.  Great for soaking up the sun on a hot day. 

Paradise Rediscovered

Paradise Rediscovered

The road winds down a long hill.  As it turns it passes a couple of houses, a spring spilling out of the hillside and what looks like an overgrown R.V. park.  The blinking light is a stop sign to either stop or go for cars on either side of a one lane bridge.  Only one car from either direction can cross the bridge at a time.  The Green River Gorge Road (or Lawson Road as it is known in Black Diamond) crosses over one of the most beautiful sections of the Green River Gorge…and one of the more accessible areas outside of Washington State Parks.

Franklin Townsite Hike and Beyond

Franklin Townsite Hike and Beyond

The trail starts at the northern side of the Green River Gorge Resort.  For $5 you can park in a field on the western side of the road.  From the trailhead you pass through a gate from private land to the undeveloped Washington State Parks land…

North Flaming Geyser State Park

North Flaming Geyser State Park

Flaming Geyser is a 503 acre day use park that is the downstream book end to the Green River Gorge.  Flaming Geyser is where the Green River Gorge ends and the Green River Valley begins.  The steep cliff walls of the gorge give way to open fields and farm land.

Across the river from the main part of Flaming Geyser State Park is an undeveloped section of the park that is at least as large as the main park...

Hanging Gardens

Hanging Gardens

Why is it called Hanging Gardens?

"Hanging Gardens is was so aptly named by Wolf Bauer because of the native vegetation perched along the edges of eroding sandstone.  Small Cedars along with other smaller native plants cling to their narrow purchase".— Lisa Parsons, local river conservationist

Winter in the Green River Gorge

Winter in the Green River Gorge

Snow has a magical way of transforming the stark bareness of a winter landscape.  A white blanket of snow covering the ground hides the decaying leaves and limp brown grass.  The bare branches of trees dramatically contrast against the white.  Red berries hidden in dark shadows of winter bushes pop as the shadows are now brightened by snow.  The forest canopy is renewed below dark snow laden clouds.  Quiet lingers between crunching sweeps of footsteps through the snow...

Icy Creek Spring Hike

Icy Creek Spring Hike

Outdoor Project adds Icy Creek Spring in the Green River Gorge hike to their website

Arts in Nature Festival

Arts in Nature Festival

Arts in Nature Festival

Interactive Display August 25th & 26th

Take a journey from the city scapes of the lower Green-Duwamish river upstream to the wild Green River Gorge.  I will be exhibiting video and photographs from my documentary The Green River Gorge, The Power of Place as part of an interactive display at Cabin 3 at Camp Long.  As part of that display I will be leading interactive activities around salmon in our watershed. Interactive activities are kid and adult friendly.   Please join me at the festival for a creative day of art and community.

Rafting the Green River Gorge at 3200 c.f.s.

Rafting the Green River Gorge at 3200 c.f.s.

The Green River Cleanup on May 6th was a successful event with high flows through the Green River Gorge and lots of participants helping to cleanup the Green River Gorge!  Check out our run through the legendary rapids Mercury, the Nozzle, and Lets Make a Deal at 3200 c.f.s.

Updated Exploring the Upper Gorge

Updated Exploring the Upper Gorge

Luckily this section is a loop starting at the resort.  Getting to our starting point on the river is a bit interesting.  Approximately thirteen years ago a developer bought 4 sections of land from Plum Creek Timber.  Those 4 sections of land are like four sides of a box and essentially lie between Washington State Parks land and Department of Natural Resources land.  So in order to get to the river at the Jellum section of the State Park you have to walk along a chain link fence and through a gate at an old logging road.  You have to cross this private ownership to get to the public land. It is convoluted and is a good example of the challenges of accessing public land in this area.

Camping at Kanaskat State Park

Camping at Kanaskat State Park

Kanaskat State Park is located approximately 37 miles southeast of Seattle Washington.  It is located at the east end of the Green River Gorge at the base of the Cascade foothills.  It has a large campground and along the river is a day use area with covered picnic areas and three miles of trails.  It also is a popular launch point for experienced whitewater kayakers and rafters who consider the Green River Gorge one of the top whitewater runs in Washington state.