A Family Adventure

in the mountains, ocean, and air


June 11, 2022
Emilie Phillips
The old power line is steep

Mount Watatic is another great place to take friends, and especially small kids. It’s a short hike to good views. They recently stopped allowing parking along the highway. (See trail notices.) By the time we got to the parking lot, it was full. So we started our hike at the parking lot a bit farther east at the base of an old power line. I was hoping to find the trail we had found back in January of 2013. Unfortunately, we don’t have a GPS track from that trip, and I didn’t have Tyson along to help me find it. The power line trail started with an old sign saying it was closed. Then 10 paces farther along was a brand new sign saying it had been rerouted for land owner concerns. We found the reroute easily. After that we found a trail junction with more brand new signs. We stayed on the power line. It was unfortunately not scenic and quite steep for the little kids. I wish I had been able to find the other trail.

Kids counting for hide and seak

The hike improved dramatically at the top. The kids went off and played hide and seek. Isaac was really good with the younger kids. The youngest had no clue how to hide, so Isaac would help him hide, and then go hide himself. And Isaac made sure to hide close by where the others had a chance of finding him.

The mom of the other family, Ghinwa, is a former colleague of mine and the real purpose of the hike was transitioning from a coworker relationship to a friends relationship. We spent the time up top talking. So success there too.

The kids poking at the purple powder bugs

For the descent, we decided to take the longer route down to the main parking lot, and then some adults would go get the cars. By taking the longer trail, we avoided the worst of the crowds. We found some laurel blooming, one azalea, and a few lady slippers. Some other hikers pointed out a baby eastern milk snake. Isaac caught it all on his own without Dad’s help. He let Leila hold it and then they put it back in the bushes. Isaac taught Leila blaze tag. We also saw several more puddles of the purple powder jumping bugs. I still have no idea what they are. The kids had fun poking at them. At the very bottom, I was pleasantly surprised to see the muddy beaver dam has been replaced by a board walk across flowing water.

Walking the road back to my car, I realized what other people were doing for parking. They just went across the highway and parked on the dirt road, Old Pierce Rd, on the other side.

All Photos

GPS Track