Westberg Trail to Manastash Ridge / 西堡步道上馬納斯塔什脊

Yesterday we made a last-minute trip out to Taunton Benchmark. But it was too windy to enjoy the sweeping views. So we spent most of our time behind a shed. Then today, we took a short trip up to Manastash Ridge via Westberg Trail.

Westberg Trail continues
Westberg Trail continues

See more trip photos here.

Westberg Trail at a Glance

Access: Westberg Trailhead
Round Trip: 5 miles
Elevation Range: 1840′-3560′
Gear: none
GPS Track: available
Dog-Friendly: yes

Change in Plans

My initial plan was to go up to Swakane Peak near Wenatchee. So I took a look at my old trips. But then I saw that we were there less than two years ago. So in favor of adding more time in between visits, I looked for another hike.

Since we stayed in Ellensburg last night, I looked for a local hike. Then I realized it had been a while since we were on the Manastash Ridge. Not only would the outing save us lots of driving time, but it would also be on our way home.

Ridge bound
Ridge bound

See more trip photos here.

Westberg Trail

As always, we took the Westberg Trail to go up to Manastash 1. I remembered scrambling down the ridge the last time we were here. But for the puppy’s sake, today we stay on the trail the entire time.

Westberg Trail is a hot spot among outdoor enthusiasts. The initially steep path took us straight up to the viewpoint through a couple of ribs. The side trails could confuse people who haven’t been here before. But the main pathway was easy to follow.

Kittitas Valley from Westberg Trail
Kittitas Valley from Westberg Trail

See more trip photos here.

Manastash Ridge Memorial

A group of Ellensburg high school students had put up an old memorial at the lookout. It stood up here for over 20 years. It was in honor of their beloved coach, Ray Westberg, who died of a heart attack at age 47.

But as time went on, dozens more memorials and signs began to show up on the ridge. They were not only for people but also for pets and animals. So in recent years, the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has removed the ornaments because of clutter. 

Old memorial site
Old memorial site

See more trip photos here.

End of Westberg Trail

Manastash Ridge runs nearly 50 miles from east to west. So the sweeping view from the ridgeline was similar to the nearby hills. Most would turn around at the end of Westberg Trail by the lookout. But others would extend their trip by going farther on the ridge.

We haven’t been here during the blooming season since the first trip. But if we did, we would likely see a wide variety of flowers. Wildflowers like Lupine, balsamroot, paintbrush, sagebrush, and many others would strew along the trail.

East view
East view

See more trip photos here.

Summit Time

We visited the Rattler Benchmark of Umtanum Ridge last November. It was just one ridgeline away south of here. There wasn’t any snow at the turnaround point. But earlier, I saw some farther west on the ridge. It looked woodsy in that direction. 

It was another windy day like the day before. So we dodged the wind behind some tall sagebrush. The part I liked the most was seeing the cities spared across the Kittitas Valley. Places like Thorp and Ellensburg were visible.

Northeast view
Northeast view

See more trip photos here.

Outro

We followed the trail on the way back. Many others were just coming up the ridge as we went down. Later, we stopped by the ranch next to the parking area. So I could show the puppy the horses.

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