Trails for everyone, forever

Home Go Hiking Trip Reports Bandera Mountain

Trip Report

Bandera Mountain — Tuesday, Jun. 18, 2019

Snoqualmie Region

Trip Report By

WTA Member


Type of Hike

Day hike

Trail Conditions

Trail in good condition


Road rough but passable


No bugs


Snow free

Inspired by this trip reporter and a friend who told me the beargrass was peaking in this area, I decided I should visit Bandera. Trouble was, I had a full schedule for the next several weekends, and I couldn't dip out of work for a during-the-week hike. 

Solution: A (very) early morning hike! 

Figuring backwards, I set my alarm for 3 20; the latest I could get out of bed and still get to work at 9. Surprisingly, I was relatively awake when my alarm went off, and I hopped out of bed, got myself ready to go and was out the door by 4am. I got started hiking at 5 15, knowing I'd need to turn around at 6 15 in order to make it back in time for work. 

I really wanted to make the summit, so I chugged up the trail at a pretty fast pace (for me, anyway). But around 5 45 I realized I wasn't going to hit even the false (little Bandera) summit. That was fine; there was no view at all, and I'd come for the beargrass anyway, so I figured I'd get to the junction, then go a little ways up the Bandera Mountain trail and sit down to enjoy the flowers. 

Meanwhile, I took a bunch of pictures of the beargrass in the fog. It was so pretty, and I had the bonus of seeing lupine, paintbrush, cinquefoil (or maybe dogwood -- still can't reliably identify it) and thimbleberry flowers! 

I found a rock to perch on at at the "top" and listened to the birds singing. Without a view, it was much easier to focus on the flowers and the wildlife. 

Because I was worried about getting caught in morning commute traffic, I tried a little trail running on the way down, and I can say the Ira Spring Trail is a great bet for beginning trail runners! The section from the junction with the Bandera Mountain trail is a little rocky, but the last 1.3 miles before getting to the car is wide and flat and makes for nice running. I ran bits of both sections, and made it back to the car at 7am; 25 minutes earlier than I thought I would! 

Traffic was even in my favor. I got back to my place 15 minutes before I expected to. Just enough time to get a coffee before heading into work. 

Sadly, no skittles were consumed on this hike. But I did have some salted peanuts on the way back. 


hikingwithlittledogs on Bandera Mountain

Ooh. I really like the 3rd photo with the foggy trees in the background. 👍

Posted by:

hikingwithlittledogs on Jun 18, 2019 10:08 PM

nwroth on Bandera Mountain

Thanks! There were quite a few moments like that on Tuesday morning. :)

Posted by:

nwroth on Jun 20, 2019 05:47 PM

Bob and Barb on Bandera Mountain

Nice photos of the beargrass! I especially like the last one!

Posted by:

Bob and Barb on Jun 19, 2019 02:41 PM

nwroth on Bandera Mountain

Thank you! It was a really nice little view to have while I was sitting quietly.

Posted by:

nwroth on Jun 20, 2019 05:47 PM

TDoughty on Bandera Mountain

Loved reading the story of another creative morning hiker. I work at 9, and live less than 10 mins. from a couple different trailheads in central Washington. So 3-5 mornings a week, I get up around 6 so I can get in an hour+ of "uphills with views" before work. I can really tell a difference in the way my day goes, when it starts with a hike.
Glad you found a way to get yours!

Posted by:

TDoughty on Aug 25, 2019 05:40 PM