King Benchmark by Lord Hill Regional Park and Snoqualmie River / 金基準

  • Reading time:6 mins read

King Benchmark by Lord Hill Regional Park perches above Snoqualmie River and the Skykomish River near Monroe. The two rivers become the Snohomish River south of the park. Meanwhile, Mount Pilchuck, 18 miles to the north, is visible on a clear day.

Tower of King Benchmark
Tower of King Benchmark

See more trip photos here.

King Benchmark at a Glance

Access: Lake Fontal Road
Round Trip: 7.7 miles
Elevation Range: 960′-1600′
Gear: none
Route Info: Scott Rice
GPS Track: available
Dog-Friendly: yes

A Plethora of New Roads

From the locked gate at Lake Fontal Road, it’s under four miles each way. We parked by one other car and started walking just before sunrise. Due to logging, many new side roads have since surfaced. It could be disorienting without looking at the map closely.

NOTE: There are conflicting accounts from online reports over private land ownership. Exercise discretion beyond the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) border at mile 2.5.

The first viewpoint was by the first clear-cut, boasting expansive west-to-north views. The clearing must’ve been recent, as Google satellite images from this year still showed trees in that area. Soon, we dove back into the trees and continued.

The first clear-cut
The first clear-cut

See more trip photos here.

Leaving DNR Land

We walked past an unnamed pond and passed another clear-cut in half a mile. It also looked recent, judging by the satellite images. But I decided to continue and return later for the views. I knew none would be at the summit.

We went outside the DNR land past the clearing in under a mile. Then, we took the leafy uphill road at the next fork and headed south. Soon, the path made two more switchbacks through debris before ending by the brambles.

USGS marker on King Benchmark
USGS marker on King Benchmark

See more trip photos here.

King Benchmark Summit Plus Exit

It took some scrambling around the bushes before suddenly coming upon a road. So we followed it as it led us straight to the lone tower. There was some east view, but I couldn’t tell what I was seeing. We left the top after our usual photo session.

We stopped by the muddy pond, which the dogs dove right in. But they found out the hard way when they had difficulty getting out of the dirty water. Then we hung out by both viewpoints for a long while before lazing down the mountain.

West-to-northwest panorama
West-to-north panorama

See more trip photos here.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Discover more from One Hike A Week / 每週一行

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading