Route: Snow-covered trail (snowshoes)


TR #: 334

Category: Washington (I-90)       Summit Elev: 4,788 ft      

Partners: Gabriel Deal, Lindsay Malone

Better than a run around the neighborhood! 4000+ foot gain to a summit with a view.


Sitting at the entrance to the Snoqualmie Valley, Mt. Teneriffe is a popular destination for Seattle-based hikers. Its 4000-foot vertical relief above I-90 make it a good day of exercise. Plus, the trail is pleasant and the summit offers sweeping views of Rainier, the Snoqualmie Valley, and Olympics. In the winter, the hike becomes a nice snowshoe, with the mostly-timbered approach making avalanche danger a near-non-issue.

So when on the third weekend of January my friends Gabriel and Lindsay were planning on hiking to the top of Teneriffe, I happily set aside my plans to go on a long jog and write an exam and threw my spikes and pack into my car and drove down to Seattle to meet them. It was a nice day of moderate exercise, good conversation, and pleasant muted views. We decided to do a loop trip, ascending via the Teneriffe Falls trail, traversing over towards Mt. Si, and descending back to the car via the Mt. Si Trail. Due to the uncharacteristically meager amount of snow in January 2018, snowshoes were not needed, but spikes were handy.

The following page gives a short trip report for the day. 


Don't always believe the GPS stats. This is why my GPS said it was a 19-mile day (rather than the actual 11.5 miles). Or perhaps we were weaving in and out of the trees like madpeople!
GPS track.
(GAIA map screenshot)
GPS track.
(Google Earth screenshot)

Total trip (from Lindsay's Strava track since my GPS was inaccurate): ~11.5 miles, ~4,180 ft gain/loss 

Total time: 6.5 hours (car to car time, includes breaks)
Car to summit: 3 hours, 15 minutes
On summit: 20 minutes
Summit to car: 3 hours


The well-signed and well-groomed Mt. Teneriffe trail.
A rare sighting of a leaf man. We almost stepped on him.
Teneriffe Falls.
The steeper trail to the summit after Teneriffe Falls.
The trail above Teneriffe Falls was marked by fairly-recent gouges in the trees. These giant gouges seem like unnecessary harm to the beautiful trees. The trail is so well-defined and takes a pretty obvious path straight up the ridge.
Another giant unsightly gouge on an innocent tree.
We encountered a dusting of snow around 4,000 feet.
Spikes were useful by around 4,400 feet (400 feet below the summit). Due to the uncharacteristically meager winter snowpack, we never needed snowshoes.
The views across the Snoqualmie Valley opening up as we neared the summit.
The summit of Teneriffe. Easy way is on a slope to the left. 
View south across the summit. Lindsay and Gabriel on top. There were a few other parties up there as well.
View north across the summit. 
The view out towards Mt. Si. I-90 is below and the Olympics are in the distance past Seattle.
Clouds over Snoqualmie Valley.
Another photo taken on the summit, just before starting the descent
We decided to do a loop and descended via the trail towards Mt. Si. This trail (which follows a well-defined ridge) was marked by more unnecessary unsightly gouges on the trees as well. I think this photo is evidence that whoever made these gouges was more into the act of making gouges than of marking the trail. 
Part of the trail between Teneriffe and Si follows an old logging road. 
A sign located at the "You are Here". We considered tagging the summit of Mt. Si. We had enough time to do so and still get out before dark, but we were all rather indifferent, so we headed down. After all, if I move to Colorado next year, I have to leave some unclimbed summits in Washington to come back to.
Hiking through the low cloud layer as we descended to the valley floor. Because of the fog, I thought that this was one of the most beautiful segments of the day.
Beautiful forest.
Spider webs are a work of art. To me, evidence that nature did not just create itself.