Western Washington Preschool Hikes: Franklin Falls

With the honeymoon phase of quiet, kid-free mornings due to our little guy (now 3 years-old) being an unusually late sleeper now officially over, we are looking at the bright side.

Yes, he used to sleep until 9, 9:30, even 10 (talk about being spoiled) o’clock in the morning, and still manage (and need) a 2-hour nap in the afternoon.  Now that he’s transitioned to a regular bed though, the late mornings are a distant memory.  Maybe it’s his new found freedom of being able to get out on his own.  Maybe it’s an age thing.  Maybe the change of space changed his mindset.  Regardless, we are adjusting.

As I was saying, the bright side is…more time for adventure! We can now mange a decent hike, a decent distance away from home, and still be able to return for nap time.

Franklin Falls near Snoqualmie Pass (about an hour’s drive from Seattle) is just on the verge of being too far for a morning excursion.  As long as we get into gear early enough and pack a lunch to enjoy en route, it’s possible to accomplish.

On this particular early October day, we found the trail (2 miles out and back) to be filled with mushrooms.  Vibrant colors and so many different varieties, thanks to the tiny fungi spotter, we probably stopped and viewed nearly every single specimen available that day.

Western Washington Preschool  Hikes: Franklin Falls | WildTalesof.com

Just getting to see that many mushrooms would have been enough for Bergen as far as being satisfied with the hike, but we had more in store for him.  As we reached the mile marker of the trek, I knew a waterfall was coming, but wasn’t sure how much water we’d actually see.  Without a lot of rainfall this summer in the Seattle area, and it being past the April-July prime waterfall viewing season, I didn’t think the falls would be very mighty.  Wrong.  Even in autumn, the falls are spectacular sight.

Western Washington Preschool  Hikes: Franklin Falls | WildTalesof.com

Western Washington Preschool  Hikes: Franklin Falls | WildTalesof.com

Western Washington Preschool  Hikes: Franklin Falls | WildTalesof.com

Bergen found it thrilling to walk (fairly) close to the waterfall allowing the mist to fall on his face, and delighted in the amount of rocks, big and small, available for tossing into the pools and creeks at the base.  With plenty of space to roam, we managed to find a dry spot to settle for a picnic lunch giving us the chance to relax a bit and really take in the scenery.

Info to Know:

  • Franklin Falls is located near Snoqualmie Pass, about an hour from Seattle (exit 47 off of I-90).
  • Northwest Forest Pass (available online, at sporting good stores & Forest Service offices) is required.
  • The hike is easy at 2 miles round trip and just 400 feet of elevation gain.
  • Take caution at the end of the main trail when trekking down to the waterfall.  Younger children will need quite a bit of help navigating the slippery (and jagged) rocks.

Tell us about your favorite waterfall hike. Leave us a comment!

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Western Washington Preschool  Hikes: Franklin Falls | WildTalesof.com


11 thoughts on “Western Washington Preschool Hikes: Franklin Falls

  1. I’ve had this mini hike on my list of things to do with my little guy all summer! I need to do this soon. Great photos!! Hope u r doing well. 🙂

    • Its a great one amd even closer for you guys–hope you get to it soon 🙂 Was just reading that its also really neat in winter with the water freezing, icicles & such. Thanks for reading & commenting!

  2. A waterfall, mushroom spotting, and picnic – sounds like a wonderful morning hike. I’m not a morning person at all, so I am quite happy when my kids sleep in. Although my teen boy is taking it to the extreme by wanting to sleep past noon.

    • Yes! Such a nice, easy hike. Hoping we can do a similar one soon.

      Ahhh, we are so curious to see if B will be that type of “older” kid–I remember those days…so tempting to just sleep the day away!

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