7.5 mi rt
max: 6035 ft
gain: ~2205 ft
gpx track, use at your own risk: Koppen
With three days left of my break between quarters I decided to head to the Teanaway. This is one of my favorite hiking areas in the state and I try to visit a couple of times each year. The Teanaway is outside of Cle Elum and has recently been set aside as a recreation area/community forest. There is tons of camping in areas along the road (free) or in actual campgrounds (paid). I am cheap, I go for the free if I don’t spend the night on a mountain.
I left Bham later in the morning and didn’t arrive at parking for the trail until after 1. The traffic/drive was exhausting so I took a nap in the truck. Parking is at a camping area and here is where I ended up spending the night.
Another reason I took a nap is that it was raining and the weather people told me it was going to be clearing up in the later afternoon. It did get better so glad I waited. The trail starts off (N47 25.098 W120 56.305) right out of the parking area and quickly crosses the creek on the bridge. This is a shared trail (hikers, bikers, motorcyclers) but I didn’t see any one but one group (4) of women all day, they were heading down and we passed right before I got to the saddle. The trail stays pretty flat for the first mile, mile and a half before it starts to climb up the switchbacks. This elevation gain lasts around 1.3 miles and gives you about 1000 ft gain. The top of the switchbacks dumps you out at a saddle. Looking right from there I could see over to the summit of De Roux, my original plan for the day. The weather in that direction was dark. I had this perfectly good trail leading to a perfectly good summit to my left and I figured what the heck, I think I will go up Koppen. Left it was.
In the next mile I gained the final 900-ish feet. The trail up was quite nice passing through trees and through open rock outcropping areas. There was very little snow, just a few patches here and there to walk over. The final approach was tame, just a small rocky trail to the summit. It was windy so I hunkered down and enjoyed the views for a bit before heading back down. The down was relatively quick so I was back to the truck way before dusk for my dinner and beer. I stayed at the camping area where I was parked setting myself up nicely for the hike the next day which started just up the road a bit.