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Trip Report    

Day Hike - Swauk Forest Discovery Trail

Naturalist trip full of flowers. A lovely 3+ mile hike with 500 feet of elevation gain with excellent opportunities to see flowers, trees and birds of the "East of the Cascades".

  • Road suitable for all vehicles
  • The trail is in great condition, and the restroom in the parking lot is open.  Lower areas had mosquitoes.

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Swauk Summit, with Bitterbrush, looking North towards Enchantments and Stewart Range.
Photo by Thomas Bancroft.

We had 2 days of wonderful "naturalizing" at the easy-to-reach Swauk Forest Discovery Trail.  This loop trail system is a few minutes drive from the summit of Blewett Pass. 


We counted over 60 flower species including Tweedy's Lewisia, Hear-leafed Arnica, Bracted Lousewort, Showy Jacobs Ladder, Harsh Paintbrush, Penstemon, Sierra Pea, American Vetch, Silvercrown (Luina), Nineleaf Biscuitroot (parsley), Longspur Lupine, Death Camas, Arrowleaf Balsamroot, Wood's Rose,  Lupine, Western Blue Clematis, Goosefoot Violet, Bitterbrush, Olympic onion, and Western Meadowrue.


Conifer species included Western Larch, Ponderosa Pine, Grand Fir, Western White Pine, Douglas Fir, Lodegepole Pine, and Engelmann Spruce.

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Bird species included Williamson's Sapsucker, Hairy Woodpecker (and young in nest), Western Bluebird, Yellow-rumped Warbler, Cassin's Finch, and Western Tanager.  Many thanks to all the wonderful trip participants and fellow leaders, Tom Bancroft and Leilani Cramer.