Shuttle service to Washington trailheads returns this weekend

May 8, 2023, 4:33 PM

Trailhead Director Memorial Day weekend...

Starting May 13, King County Metro (KCM) kicks off Trailhead Direct bus service to locations like Mount Si, Teneriffe, and Little Si. (Photo courtesy of Trailhead Direct)

(Photo courtesy of Trailhead Direct)

To prevent your car from falling victim to break-ins and theft, something police claimed occurs more often amid warmer weather, a popular new shuttle service to Washington trailheads returns this weekend.

Starting May 13, King County Metro (KCM) kicks off Trailhead Direct bus service to locations like Mount Si, Teneriffe, and Little Si. The service started in 2017 and gained popularity, but came to a complete halt when the pandemic hit.

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Now that the service is back, KCM is excited to offer direct service for hikers to enjoy the trails without the worry.

King County Metro spokesperson Ryan Miller said you don’t need a reservation, just show up outside the Broadway Station light rail in Capitol Hill.

“With Trailhead Direct, we want it to be as simple and similar to any other bus route as possible,” Miller told us. “So you can use your ORCA card, you can use a mobile ticket, you can pay in cash, all of the options that are available to you on, you know, a regular bus is available to you on Trailhead Direct.”

Miller said you can bring your bike and even your dog (as long as they are well-behaved). If you want information on the trailheads, there’s a posted schedule. Rides start as early as 7:30 a.m. through approximately 1 p.m.

“The reason why we stop taking people out past 1:30 p.m. is we want to make sure that people have enough time to safely do their hike there and back,” Miller said. “And then we’ll start returning people back at about 11 or so. So if you had caught the first bus, you’d have about two hours to do your hike before the first bus back takes you there. The last bus leaves at 6:30 p.m.”

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Using the Trailhead Direct also prevents smash and grabs.

“It was not the original intent of the program but absolutely is a benefit of not taking your car to the trailhead,” Miller said.

“The shuttles will be nice because it alleviates some of the congestion near the trailheads,” State Trooper Kelsey Harding told us. “In the past, we have seen people park partly blocking the roadway, which causes issues for motorists driving through the area.”

Harding said that if you don’t take the shuttle, do not leave anything in your vehicle in plain sight.

“Pack what you can and are willing to carry on your person,” she said.

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Shuttle service to Washington trailheads returns this weekend