Saint Edward State Park & Big Finn Hill
|Description:||Saint Edward State Park is where I learned to muni.
It has some good trails suitable for beginners, but still
has stuff that will keep advanced riders entertained. The
trails here are cross-country style with rolling ups and
Saint Edward State Park and Big Finn Hill (a King County Park) are connected by a 1/2 mile section of trail. Each trail system has it's own character.
We'll be doing a ride here on Wednesday, July 24th (the day between NAUCC and UNICON). We may do another ride here during UNICON just because it is a good place to ride and allows riders of different skill levels to all have fun.
|Location:||About 45 minutes from North Bend near Juanita and Kenmore. It's right by Lake Washington.|
|Distance:||As long as you want to make it. My usual rides there are 7 to 10 miles.|
|Difficulty:||Something for everyone, from beginner to expert.|
|The Trail:||For the beginners there is the Watertower Trail,
Plateau Trail, Entrance Trail, Arrowhead Trail, and
Perimeter Trail. If you want a little more challenge you
can ride the Juanita trail or Volunteer Trail. Take the
Entrance Trail up to the entrance and ride Juanita or
Volunteer downhill back to the park. All of these trails
are in Saint Edward State Park and are close together.
You can easily turn the ride into a loop.
The intermediate and expert riders can add in the Seminary Trail which gives you a nice 300 vertical foot climb up from Lake Washington back up to the park. I use this climb as a training climb. When I'm in better shape I can make the climb with no stops. Unfortunately, I'm not in shape yet this year.
To combine Saint Edward with Big Finn Hill you go up to the entrance and take the Ti trail that starts right by the Bastyr University sign. The Ti trail parallels Juanita Drive. Near the start of the Ti trail you will cross an "A" frame bridge. To the right of the "A" frame bridge is what I call the Stunt trail. It's not maintained like the main trail and is not in the greatest condition. But it does have a few small stunts that are in various stages of disrepair. The Stunt trail meets up with the main trail near Holmes Point Drive. The main trail continues straight after the "A" frame bridge and parallels Juanita Drive. The Ti trail ends when it crosses Holmes Point Drive.
Cross Holmes Point Drive and continue on the trail. This trail takes you to Big Finn Hill Park. You'll do a little zig-zag and come to an intersection. If you take a right at the intersection you'll come to the Elevator. The Elevator is a big compression dip. It's fun to ride down, but very difficult to make it all the up the other side. The trail loops back to join up with the main trail that parallels Juanita Drive. The trail will cross 72nd Ave. NE and there will be a signboard with a map of the Big Finn Hill Trails. I usually ride around the perimeter of Big Finn Hill trails in a counter-clockwise direction. In the center of these trails is a BMX style jump, a small ledge to ride off, and other treats to play on. Ride around and loop around Big Finn Hill and then head back to Saint Edward State Park. Make an effort to keep your bearings while in this area of Big Finn Hill Park so you find your way back to the entrance on 72nd Ave. NE. It's easy to loose your sense of direction as you ride around in circles on the many trails there.
Once you find your way back to the entrace of the Big Finn Hill trails, retrace the trails to get back to Saint Edward State Park.
The Topo map is a hand drawn approximation of the trails. Don't rely on it for being an exact map of the trails.
|Notes:||The trails are near a QFC grocery store, a Subway
sandwich shop, and several other restaurants. There is
also a bike shop next to the QFC should you need any
When parking at the trailheads do not leave valuables in the car. There have been break-ins at the trailheads.