Our weekend away on Cascade Highway 2, Washington in the summer of 2011: Cabin on the river in Skykomish, hiking the Iron Goat Trail and Bridal Veil Falls
We wanted to do something special for our one year wedding anniversary, and a cabin on the river off Washington Cascade Highway 2 sounded peaceful and relaxing. I searched on vrbo.com and found a great cabin. The cabin is one of three owned by the same lady in the Skykomish area–her website is www.skycabins.com and the cabin we stayed at was Whispering Waters. There is a four night minimum in the summer, so we made a four day weekend out of it.
The cabin was very clean and super cute. It had a yard with a fire pit right on the river, a back deck, an outdoor hot tub, a small kitchen, one bedroom downstairs and a loft bedroom, and a living area with TV, DVD player, and satellite TV. The loft bedroom had steep stairs, but was very nice. My favorite part was the tiny porch with French doors off the loft bed. There were a couple chairs on the porch and a mosquito coil for night.
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We brought all our groceries to make all of our meals. We arrived on a Friday evening, unpacked, and roasted some hot dogs over a campfire by the river.
The next morning, we cooked eggs benedict and home fries, and looked through the binder of area attractions that our host had left in the cabin. We got directions to the Iron Goat Trail, just a short ways up Cascade Highway 2. We got a Northwest Forest Day Pass from the Ranger Station nearby, which you need for parking at trail heads in the area.
We hiked along the Iron Goat Trail for a ways. It was a nice walk, very flat, but also pretty boring. It was nice for exercise and families with kids, but there wasn’t really anything that would make me recommend it otherwise. We hiked a ways and then turned around.
We spent the afternoon relaxing at the cabin, reading and sunbathing by the river.
Sunday was our anniversary, so we went on a recommended hike to Bridal Veil Falls. It is about a 2.5 mile uphill hike to the falls. The first two miles of the trail is a gradual incline with a few steep parts here and there. While gradual, my 40+ hour a week desk job doesn’t leave me in the best hiking shape, and at the 2 mile point, I was dying. When I thought we were almost there, we saw a sign pointing sharply to the right for the falls in .5 miles. We turned and stared at a set of wooden stairs straight up the side of a mountain for half a mile. I just about died. I’m not a quitter, so we pursued on up the steep stairs and finally made it. It was worth it, and I would recommend the hike. I probably won’t do it again though. The 2.5 miles back was all downhill, and went by a lot faster.
We got back to the cabin and made a special anniversary dinner of some of our favorite things: Raw oysters with lemon and hot sauce, and Tahitian Poisson Cru with rice (to remember our honeymoon). We capped dinner off with some champagne and a “wedding cake top” designed after our wedding cake from Larsen’s Bakery in Seattle.
It was a great evening and the weather was perfect.
Monday was our last full day, and we decided to drive east on Cascade Highway 2 over the pass to the Bavarian town of Leavenworth, WA for the day. We poked around in the little shops and had some schnitzels and spaetzle at King Ludwig’s Restaurant. It was good and we learned a little about German food.
In the summer Leavenworth is a known for river tubing excursions. I think we’ll have to come back sometime and try it out.
Overall the trip didn’t have a ton of adventures, it was mostly about a romantic getaway on the river in the Cascades. Cascade Highway 2 is one of our favorite places in Washington, and I can’t fully describe why. Mountains, rivers woods, and very sporadic civilization. It’s all very peaceful and a short drive from Seattle. I would highly recommend skycabins.com’s rentals. There are more hiking and adventures to be had in the area, as well as Steven’s Pass in the winter. Who knows….maybe we’ll own property there someday.