Today I am grateful for fun weekends close to home!

Saturday was my birthday, so to celebrate I wanted to have an adventure close to home.  I set out to find something fun, close, but also something new and special. I go to school all day on Saturday, so our time was limited. The challenge to create a special day was on…..and wow! did we succeed!

After having dinner with my sister in Issaquah, we  drove out to Dingford Creek trailhead and camped out in our westfalia (which we love).  This allowed us a very easy and leisurely morning on Sunday.  We had reservations at Goldmyer Hot Springs at noon.  The Hotsprings are about 5 miles from the trailhead, and on our mountain bikes it would be less than an hour ride.  middleforkgiants

We ended up getting to Goldmyer about a half an hour early, so we left our bikes at the bridge and went for a hike toward Dutch Miller Gap.  The trail wanders along the river through old growth forest.  In the rain and clouds, it was a magical trek.  Perfect for our pre hot spring soak.

By noon we were back at the bridge where we re-mounted our bikes and headed to the caretakers cabin. Goldmyer The cabin is NICE! and looked quite cozy.  They have electrical and satellite, so although about 2 hours from the nearest store, they have some contact with the outside world.

From the caretaker cabin, it’s another 1/2 mile up a creek to the hot springs.  At the hot springs there is a changing shelter and then just the pools.  The top, and hottest pool goes about 30 feet into a cave.  There are three additional pools all directly below the cave pool.  They get progressively cooler.  The coolest pool is the perfect temperature for spending the entire day.  It is just above body temp, so you don’t get too hot or too cool.

If feeling really adventurous, you can dip in the creek temperature pool.  I did this twice, as moving from the coolest to the warmth of the hot springs gives you a delightful tingling sensation.

We spent about three hours in the pools and then headed back to our bikes.  The ride out was a bit cool, as it was mostly down hill.  Arriving back at the westfalia, we stripped off our wet clothes and changed into dry while we made big mugs of hot chocolate and tea.

What an amazing place, so near by, yet an adventure that made my birthday spectacular!



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