Cross posted from Executive News
King County’s Trailhead Direct transit service will return for the season beginning on Saturday, May 28, and run through Sunday, September 11.
This summer, King County Metro and King County Parks are focusing the transit-to trails service on its most popular route with stops at trailheads near Mount Si, Mount Teneriffe, and Little Si. Riders can take the bus, Sound Transit Link light rail, or bike to easily get to the Sound Transit Capitol Hill Link station, where Trailhead Direct coaches will depart every 30 minutes. The 2022 season will include service on Memorial Day, Independence Day, and Labor Day.
“Summer hiking season is returning, and we look forward to helping people reach the trails,” said Executive Constantine. “Trailhead Direct lets you venture to the mountains in a convenient and environmentally friendly way, ensuring the only footprint you leave behind is from your boots or shoes, and not your car.”
Developed in response to overcrowding at popular trailhead parking lots that frequently exceed their capacity over spring, summer, and holiday weekends, Trailhead Direct launched in 2019 thanks to a larger partnership between King County, Sound Transit, Washington Trails Association, and the Washington State Department of Natural Resources. The service has become a popular, eco-friendly way to get out of the city and explore the trails of King County. Since launching, passengers have used Trailhead Direct for over 33,000 hikes, including 5,000 hikes in 2021.
“Metro is looking forward to the new season of Trailhead Direct and to providing access to some of the best hiking in the region,” said Christina O’Claire, Metro’s Mobility Director. “We expect to see another great summer of people taking the stress out of getting to the trail, by using this car-free alternative to Mount Si.”
Trailhead Direct will operate with 14- to 32-seat vehicles and will have a rack for either two or three bikes. Passengers can use Metro’s Puget Sound Trip Planner via Android or iOS apps, desktop, or mobile to get more details about transit stops, routes, and schedules. Metro’s standard fares apply, and riders can pay with an ORCA card, Transit Go Mobile ticket, or cash with exact change.
Passengers are encouraged to check for conditions and updates related to trail accessibility and restrictions before going out and to remember the rules of the trail to ensure a safe trip.
|Adults (19 and older)||$2.75|
|ORCA LIFT Fare*
|Youth (6-18 yrs)||$1.50|
(registered seniors, Medicare, disabled)
|Children (thru age 5)||Free|
“Summer hiking season is returning, and we look forward to helping people reach the trails. Trailhead Direct lets you venture to the mountains in a convenient and environmentally friendly way, ensuring the only footprint you leave behind is from your boots or shoes, and not your car.”
Dow Constantine, King County Executive
“Metro is looking forward to the new season of Trailhead Direct and to providing access to some of the best hiking in the region. We expect to see another great summer of people taking the stress out of getting to the trail, by using this car-free alternative to Mount Si.”
Christina O’Claire, Mobility Director, King County Metro
“Trailhead Direct trips continue to help ECOSS connect immigrants, refugees and other communities of color to outdoor recreation. We are excited for the service’s return. Such partnerships with community-based organizations are critical for promoting equitable access to the health benefits of green spaces.”
Will Chen, Director of Partnerships & Belonging, ECOSS
“The Wilderness Society is thrilled to support the upcoming Trailhead Direct season. The ability to access nature is critical to our health and well-being. This program gives communities all over King County the opportunity to get outside and connect with nature and our public lands. We are looking forward to working with the county and community partners to ensure its success.”
Jacqueline Reyes, Urban to Wild Specialist, Wilderness Society