Getting to Know the Greenway

                My puppy Watson’s first walk on the Hansville Greenway involved a series of out-and-backs, turn-arounds and repeat pees on trail markers we’d passed multiple times. I wasn’t familiar with the trails but had found an entrance on Hood Canal Road. My mistake was turning on side trails without a map. I wore Watson out.

                Five years later, Watson and I hike the Greenway nearly every day, know the trails inside out and like to spread the joy of being in Nature. If you’re unfamiliar with the Greenway, here’s how to get started.

                For a two-mile, mostly flat hike, park at the Hansville Community Center, 6778 Buck Lake Rd. NE. The Greenway’s start is left across the field past the native plant garden. Maps and poop bags are available there.

                Follow the trail to signpost 0 and veer to the right through the Welcome Wood, home to robins, red-breasted sapsuckers and a short bridge. Watch for roots in the tree-shaded area.

At signpost 1, turn left toward Otter Meadow, then turn right at signpost 2. The meadow can be wet and muddy, but it’s short. Stay on the trail to signpost 3 where you’ll turn left onto the Great Hall.

Towering cedars, pines and alders will shade you from 3 to signpost 10 (and further). Side trails will tempt you, but we’ll cover those another time. Note the giant tree stumps along the way with holes in them where loggers stood on planks to cut a century ago.

Turn right at signpost 10, then veer right at signpost 7. You’re on the Trillium Loop, which blossoms in early spring. This trail will lead you back to the Great Hall, a left turn at signpost 6.

Retrace your steps and you’ve hiked about two miles. One number is missing in the signpost sequence. Can you figure out which one?

Cynthia Taggart