When out-of-town guests visit and want to see something close by that represents Washington, I immediately think of Snoqualmie Falls, a cascade flowing some 268 feet over sheer granite cliffs. It’s a short 25 miles from Seattle, but the Falls and surrounding towns will make you believe otherwise as their charm takes you back in time.
Be warned. Bring a rain jacket if you don’t want to get wet. Even on mildly windy days, the mist from the Falls will blow onto the observation areas.
There are two hydroelectric power plants at the Falls operated by Puget Sound Energy. The two powerhouses were built in 1898 and 1910, respectively. The power company is in the middle of a multi-year upgrade project to update the power plant and enhance the trails, picnic areas, and visitors’ areas. Construction equipment can be seen at the head of the Falls.
The hiking trail to the bottom of the Falls is closed until March 2013 due to the upgrade project. When it re-opens, I highly recommend the family friendly hike down which descends about 300 feet. Seeing the foot of the magnificent Falls gives you an appreciation of the power of falling water.
On the way out, train buffs may also want to catch the Northwest Railroad Museum nearby.