Hike Oyster Dome | Bellingham, WA
Oyster Dome | Bellingham, Washington
Bellingham is a college town about an hour and a half drive from Seattle. It is small and the friendliness of the locals and the intimacy of the town center make you feel a world away from the hussle and bussle of the city. The architecture is antiquated, and everyone seems to knows everyone. If you drive a few miles south, you might find the entrance to the Pacific Northwest trailhead. Don’t be surprised if you miss the start of the hike to Oyster Dome because there is just a small sign and the trail starts at the edge of the Chuckanut highway. You will be tipped off by the number of cars parked along the side of the road. The trail provides gorgeous views of Larrabee National Park and the Puget Sound in the distance. The San Juan Island dot the horizon and add to the ambiance of the locale. I assumed the hike would be easy after reading some reviews online. However, the experience was much more difficult than anticipated.
The hike was only 3.25 miles, so I figured that I would have no problem with the trek. However fifteen minutes in, I realized that the ascent was not going to be as easy as I was lead to believe. Though the 30 plus switchbacks that lead to Blanca Lake were not present, the 1900 ft. elevation gain over 2 miles was more than enough of a challenge for a relaxed Saturday.
We chose to start the climb around 4PM so we could reach the top as the sun was setting. Pictures don’t even do it justice. It felt as if I was in a fairytale. When we first arrived, we were the only people settling in to watch the sunset. However, we were quickly joined by two other groups, so it is obviously a popular place with the locals. If I lived in Bellingham, I would be up to Oyster Dome with a picnic (bottle of wine) every night.