Gold Mountain: Kitsap County Highpoint

After two and a half straight days of eating, by the end of Christmas I was feeling fairly horrible and just wanted to get out and do something. Since I flew up here, I don’t have a car at my disposal. Never being one to give up on the idea of adventure, I decided to see if my cousin Daniel would be willing to go on a Boxing Day hike with me. He accepted and even agreed to be at my mom’s house at the early (for him) hour of 8:30am.

We had vaguely decided to hike Mount Si, near North Bend, but I did some quick perusing of the NOAA Snow Depth modeling maps and saw they were calling for 4-8″ for most of the hike. Since neither of us were particularly prepared for hiking I quickly started clicking through Peakbagger looking for a Plan B. County highpointing peakbagger that I am, I settled on Kitsap County’s Gold Mountain. At 1,761′, Gold Mountain was a lock for being snow free and away we went.

Winter Washington hiking

One of the issues with last minute plan changes is that it can be hard to navigate while talking to your driver and trying to preview the route all at the same time. We went 2.5 miles down the wrong trail. After already having done a 5 mile hike, I was so pleased that Daniel was willing to stay out in the damp weather to do the hike I’d actually intended for us to do.

Damp Washington hiking

The short steep section through the misty forest was probably my favorite thing of the hike. It was so quintessentially Washington.

Foggy Washington

A good chunk of the hike was actually on old logging roads, passing through clearcuts to a non-view from the summit. Despite the extra mileage and the anticlimactic view it was wonderful to get out and stretch my legs. Perhaps even more fun was hanging out with Daniel. We have a big enough age gap that this was the first time I’ve gotten to hang out one-on-one with adult Dan. It was a blast.

Summit Gold Mountain

After our 12-mile adventure, we were both starving and when we got back to Bremerton started looking for somewhere to grab a good non-fast food meal. We stumbled upon El Balcon, a tiny Mexican-Salvadorian restaurant. We both got their chipotle steak burritos—exactly what we needed!

El Balcon, Bremerton

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