I love a good boardwalk. Between avalanche danger and time constraints, I’ve been hitting a lot more local parks lately, and this marshy Snohomish County park is full of nostalgia for me.
I grew up in Mill Creek, and remember when the boardwalk was newly put into this marshy wetland off of North Creek. It was so exciting to explore then! I still love a good boardwalk, so hoping to stretch my legs before the rain hit, met up with Mama Boots for this trail. Located just south of Mill Creek, this is a great destination in Snohomish County but close to 405 and the eastside as well. After all of our recent snow and rains, the marshes were extra-marshy, and streams that were normally a trickle were raging.
Admittedly, this is not the trail for you if hoping to get in some miles. However, with the play structure at the parking area and the interesting sites, it is wonderful for kids. The boardwalk is not entirely flat (it is mobile in some spots over deeper water), so might not be 100% friendly for wheelchairs or people in walkers, but is still a great place to get some scenery in for all ages. The walkway does float, and will bounce at times, which I noticed confusing at least one little Corgi pup. If you park at the south lot, you do begin by doing down a gravel hill before joining the boardwalk (which you’ll need to climb back up of at the end) but the rest will be the floating walkway. On a sunny day I’ve seen snakes and frogs, and the place is a bird-watcher’s paradise.
Once into the marshy wetland, the views to the west are more impressive than the back end of businesses and apartments to the east. There are two spurs along this trail, one to a pond, which I recommend taking, even if not the most aptly named. There is even a bench here and some descriptive signs, although the bench was a little lopsided during my visit. The second spur says its to a viewpoint, but it seems more like they had extra wood and just plonked a spur that went to the property line and called it a day. We did both spurs and continued north to the end of the park. If you are wanting miles and are okay pounding the pavement, continuing north from here links to several other trails (one on the map shown, more in the Mill Creek nature trails).
After reaching the north end of the trail, we turned back the way we came. In total with both spurs, I tracked 1.8 miles. Not a strenuous day by any means, but wonderful for a lazy Sunday.
Distance: 1.8 miles RT including both spurs (2.0 according to WTA)
Elevation: 35 feet (lost at the beginning of the hike, will need to end by climbing up)
Parking: No pass required; but a note due to the play structure the lot can be full often during nice weather
Bathrooms: HoneyBucket at the parking lot
Best Beer Bet: I have not visited yet, but I know that Decibel Brewing is a stones’ throw from the park.