I usually use Mon, Wed, Fri for my after-work power hikes. Today, however was a perfect Tuesday to take my 3 1/2 and 4 1/2 year old for a late afternoon stroll on Cougar Mountain. As overrun as the city of Bellevue is with cookie-cutter Mc Mansions climbing up the hillsides, it is still home to 1598-foot Cougar Mtn and plenty of hiking trails snaking their way through forests, old mine shafts, and even an old missile silo.
Today, I took Ava and Mason on a little 2 1/2 mile loop near the 1483-foot north summit of Cougar Mtn called Anti-Aircraft Peak. Recent low-elevation snows had melted back, leaving us a nice stroll through Pacific Northwest greenery. We started at the Shangri La TH. Our favorite stretch was the Lost Beagle trail portion of the loop. I had a beagle for many years, so it also had sentimental value to me. It is a relatively flat hike that is suitable even for infants in a carrier since you are never too far to turn around in the event they implode. Ava got a little nervous since she was worried it was getting dark, but overall, it was an enjoyable way to end another perfect day in Seattle.