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Tiger Mountain State Forest was heavily logged and mined for several years. Once depleted of easily-accessed raw goods, the timber and mine companies sold the land to the state of Washington, which in turn officially established it as a state park in 1981. Many of the existing trails are old logging and mining trails with the tracks removed. In 1924, a train carrying ore wrecked on the steep mountainside, and the company that owned the train was unable to remove the train cars and simply left it. The wreckage is still visible today; it can be found near the Middle Tiger Mountain.
The closest large town is Issaquah, which is about three miles to the west. A former mining and lumber town, the town has revitalized itself thanks to the growing tech sector as well as an outdoor recreation industry. Issaquah is famous for its award-winning festival called Issaquah Salmon Days, which usually occurs in early October. The event regularly draws around 500,000 people. Kickstart the perfect RV camping adventure with a search for RVs in King County.
Covering around 13,500 of forests and mountains, Tiger Mountain State Forest offers one of the best opportunities for outdoor recreation fun this close to a major city. Around 40 miles of trails wind and weave through dense second-growth forests that are perpetually layered in a soft veil of moss and dew. The forest floor, clad in spring-green fern and other small plants, is as verdant as the leaves overhead. A few trails lead adventurers to four distinct mountain peaks, three of which offer excellent views of the Seattle skyline. The westernmost peak has an especially good view of Seattle as well as the southern towns, Renton, Kent, and on a clear day, Tacoma. This peak is heavily trafficked, even though it’s one of the more challenging peaks to summit. Hikers have steep elevation gains of about 2,000 feet in a short three-mile distance to contend with.
A shoulder on the western flank of the Tiger Mountain called Poo Poo Point is especially popular with hang gliders and paragliders. Take a running start off a short, bald butte, and for a heart-wrenching split second, moment, drop a few feet before the glider catches the air and sets a-soaring.
Wildlife has once again returned to Tiger Mountain State Forest, and sightings of deer, elk, bobcats, and black bears are not uncommon. Small game creatures like rabbits, turkeys, foxes, and raccoons are typically easier to spot.
Many people opt to rent an Airstream to achieve that fantasy of the classic camping experience without sacrificing comfort. Leaky tents, mosquitoes, and rocks digging into your back. Pass! Although there is no RV camping at Tiger Mountain State Forest because it is strictly a day-use park, there are several options nearby.
The Blue Sky RV Park in Preston could be a good option to consider. Conveniently just minutes away, Blue Sky RV Park is a family-owned business that boasts full and partial hookups, wifi, and oversized sites.
Alternatively, RV camp in Kent at the KOA. This campground has several amenities for its guests that include a dog park, a community camping kitchen, and easy access to a nearby creek for fishing.
Head into the mountains with a rental camper and go camper camping near North Bend, WA. Tinkham Campground is found along the banks of Snoqualmie River. Although it’s a primitive campground, there are faucets with drinking water, vault toilets, and fire rings at each site.
A major advantage of RV camping near Issaquah is the close proximity to Seattle, which hums with activities and fun. Head up the Space Needle for a stunning view of the city skyline. Leave your mark on Seattle by adding to the famous Gum Wall. Tour the Museum of Flight, which houses one of the largest aviation collections in the country. It houses nearly 200 aircraft and several thousand artifacts and memorabilia.
Don’t overlook the towns that ring Seattle; they too have several attractions, museums, gardens, art galleries, and a vibrant night scene. The Seattle Metro area is a hopping tech scene, and Redmond is no exception. Microsoft’s headquarters are based in Redmond, and it is open to visitors. Get a glimpse into the projects the company is working on and learn about their mission to improve the world.
At the end of a long day, kick up your heels outside a motorhome rental and roast marshmallows over a crackling campfire. Don’t let the perpetual Seattle drizzle deter you from having a fun adventure.