Thursday, December 30, 2010

Northwest Trek: A winter wonderland

This past summer the girls earned free passes to Northwest Trek from the Pierce County Library Summer Reading Program. The passes were due to expire at the end of this week so we took advantage of the time off from school and work and planned a day at the Trek. We also had two buy-one-get-one-free admissions from a visit to the zoo last spring (it is sometimes printed on the back of the Point Defiance zoo admission tickets). Therefore, we were able to attend for the cost of two adult admissions: $32.

We awoke this morning to find a dusting of snow in the yard.  Northwest Trek is in Eatonville which is about halfway to Mt. Rainier from our place.  We knew there would be more snow there so in addition to our sack lunches we packed our hats and gloves and wore our ski parkas.  (I wish we had worn our snow boots too, though the paths had been cleared there were a lot of puddles and our tennis shoes got pretty wet.)

We hadn't visited Northwest Trek before so we planned to get there just after opening and stay for the whole day.  We rode the tram (included in the cost of admission) and visited all the special animal encounters and talks as well as spending plenty of time looking at each exhibit. We also spent some time in the cafe warming up with some hot cocoas and waffle fries.  Before leaving we visited the gift shop to purchase the obligatory magnet souvenir. We left with only 20 minutes to spare before closing so be sure to plan to be there the whole day when you go.

We had a fabulous time and saw more animals, both variety and numbers, than we did in Yellowstone this summer.

 We opted to eat our lunch in the cafe rather than in the snow.

 The beautiful snowy forest

 The Woverines

One of the otters. 

 This otter was a real ham but moved so quickly it was hard to get a shot of him.  He was a lot of fun to watch.

 The sun and the snow reflecting in the beaver churned water was beautiful.

 Horseshoe Lake from the Tram terminal

 Approaching the terminal. There was a grand total of 40 people on the tram.  A very empty day perfect for enjoying the park all to ourselves, or so it seemed.

 The kids smashed a penny while waiting for the tram.

 Bison! AKA American Buffalo

 A harem of Elk under the trees.

 Another Bison.  Isn't he cute with those dark brown puppy dog eye.

 A Moose, a moose!

 Black tail deer

 Cocoa Break!

 Spotted Owl

 Bobcat.  We decided that he was doing yoga up on his balance beam.  He would stretch forward and then lean back and then lower his hind end and then arch very high.  Then he would freeze and hold position.

 The wolves

 Grizzly Bear

 Black Bear

I shot this piece of moss from 15 feet away.  Look at that detail! I am very impressed with my new camera lens, it's incredible.


  1. Great pictures. I was looking to see if it's worth going in the winter! Thanks.

  2. It is definitely worth going in the winter. Have fun!


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