Photo courtesy of King County Parks
                                Trailhead Direct returns April 20 with new routes.

Photo courtesy of King County Parks Trailhead Direct returns April 20 with new routes.

Trailhead Direct returns with more routes

Transit-to-trails returns April 20.

King County’s Trailhead Direct is returning on April 20 for a second full season. This year, the transit-to-trails service returns with more routes.

Trailhead Direct is a pilot project co-led by King County Metro and King County Parks. The pilot project hopes to ease vehicle congestion, reduce safety hazards and expand access to hiking destinations along Interstate 90.

The 2019 season will include more pick-up sites with services to more trailheads. The four routes include Cougar Mountain, Issaquah Alps, Mailbox Peak and Mount Si, all with their own trailhead.

The newest route offers service to the Sky Country Trailhead in Cougar Mountain Regional Widland Park. The route will start at Sound Transit’s Tukwila International Boulevard station, with stops at the Renton Transit Center and Renton Highlands. Hikers have the option to continue to the Issaquah Transit Center where they can transfer to Trailhead Direct routes to additional hikes in the Issaquah Alps, or east to Little Si, Mount Si, Mount Teneriffe and Mailbox Peak.

At Little Si, a new drop-off and pick-up location was designed and constructed. Trailhead Direct Mailbox Peak returns with service starting at the Issaquah Transit Center with a stop at the North Bend Park-and-Ride.

Three of the four routes connect to Sound Transit Link light rail. Transfers between Trailhead Direct routes are accessible at Eastgate Freeway Station, Issaquah Transit Center, and North Bend Park-and-ride.

Hikers can board Trailhead Direct at four Sound Transit Link light rail stations: Tukwila International Boulevard, University Street, Mount Baker and Capitol Hill. All four routes connect to transit hubs including the Issaquah Transit Center, Eastgate Freeway Station in Bellevue and the North Bend Park-and-Ride.

Executive Dow Constantine has said the transit-to-trails service offers the “opportunity to give everyone access to the great outdoors, to the magnificent wilderness and recreation opportunities that King County has to offer.”

More than 10,000 hikes were accomplished last year through Trailhead Direct.

Trailhead Direct Operates vehicles with as many as 27 seats, and they all have a rack for either two or three bikes. Passengers pay the standard $2.75 Metro fee, or pay with an ORCA card, Transit Go Mobile ticket, or cash with exact change.

Issaquah Alps Trails Club executive director Lindsay Frickle said the club is thrilled to partner with Trailhead Direct and it is looking forward to offering a variety of accessible guided hikes.

“We are very excited about the new route to the Sky County Trailhead at Cougar Mountain Regional Widland Park,” Frickle said. “We look forward to guiding more hikers of all abilities via Trailhead Direct this spring and summer.”

To learn more about Trailhead Direct, go online to www.trailheaddirect.org.

More in News

Issaquah family held hostage is released

Issaquah Police brought in the Crisis Negotiation Team to assist in hostage negotiation.

New Issaquah utility rates, assistance programs

Cost increase and low-income support in 2020.

Federal Way resident Mi’Chance Dunlap-Gittens, 17, died Jan. 27, 2017. Courtesy photo
Law enforcement challenges report on sting operation that killed Federal Way teen

King County Office of Law Enforcement Oversight’s findings rattle Sheriff’s Office, police union.

Unstable housing? Apply for Section 8

Applications open in February for housing vouchers

In 2018, the city of Seattle approved and then repealed a head tax within a month. It would have levied a $275 per employee tax on businesses grossing more than $20 million annually. Sound Publishing file photo
County head tax bill passes committee

Bill would let King County levy a tax on businesses to fund housing and address homelessness.

Gov. Jay Inslee signs the first bill of the 2020 legislative session into law. On the right stands the bill’s primary sponsor, Sen. Jamie Pedersen, D-Seattle, who is wearing a red tie. Photo by Cameron Sheppard, WNPA News Service
Gov. Inslee signs tax bill to help fund higher education

Law shifts a portion of the tax burden to large tech companies.

King County Metro’s battery-electric bus. Photo courtesy of kingcounty.gov
King County Metro bus fleet will be electrified by 2035

Future base in South King County would house hundreds of the zero-emission vehicles.

Three-quarters of the suicide deaths among children ages 10 to 14 are caused by firearms, according to a new report from the Firearm Injury and Policy Research Program at the University of Washington. File photo
King County studies youth gun violence amid rising suicides

It’s unclear what’s driving the trend.

A King County work crew clears a road near Preston on Feb. 7, 2020. Heavy rains appear to have caused multiple landslides along the road. Aaron Kunkler/staff photo
The future could look a lot like this year’s flood season

Climate change is expected to lead to more winter flooding in King County.

Theo Koshar, Janet McIntosh and Robin Kelley of the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery work to find road drains and clear them of leaves, outside the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery in Issaquah, WA on Feb. 6, 2020. Mitchell Atencio/Staff Photo
Rapid rainfall has led to flooding, impacting all parts of King County.

County warns residents to obey barricades for safety.

Newport Way Southwest between Front Street South and Wildwood Blvd Southwest is closed due to phase 4 flooding. Photo courtesy of City of Issaquah Twitter
Heavy rainfall leads to phase 4 flood warnings in Issaquah

The rainfall should be cresting by early afternoon and the flood warning is expected to be lifted by 6 p.m. tonight, according to the NWS.

Black Press file photo
North Bend facility will serve as U.S. quarantine zone

Facility will be one of five nationwide.