Summer Land Trail is a 8.5 mile out and back trail located near Paradise Inn, Washington that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is best used from July until October.
From Seattle, east on I-90, south on I-405 and then south on Highway 169 to Enumclaw. In Enumclaw, south on Highway 410. 36.2 miles past mile marker 26 turn right on Sunrise Rd for 4.3 miles to parking area on right just after Fryingpan Creek. Parking is on either side of the road, the trailhead is on the left (southwest) side near the bridge.
This was a beautiful trail from start to finish. The forest at the beginning was like stepping into another world. Then we reached the river, that at the time, looked like a flowing latte. The log bridge to cross the river was interesting. Thankfully there was a hand rail of sorts. After that it one incredible view after another. The meadows were full of blooming flowers and the sky was clear so Rainier and Little Tahoma were in their full glory. Once we reached the top where the meadows stretch up the mountainsides I was in absolute awe. The only thing that put a damper on that feeling were the signs imploring people not to walk on the meadows because they were recovering from over use and damage. People! Seriously! We all want to enjoy their beauty for a long time and they are a home for all kinds of creatures. DONT WALK ON THE MEADOWS!!! No exceptions! Anyway, we saw a marmot scurrying about and making its strange little call. It was hard to leave this amazing place. The hike back down was pretty good consolation and we saw a bear (which was slightly scary since it was only 10 feet from the trail). I will be hiking this one again for sure!
Our first time hiking Summerland. The trail itself is really well maintained. You'll cross over a number of bridges with beautiful creeks. One is fresh ice water from a nearby glacier and is convenient stopping point to put your feet in. Once you reach the 4.2 mile camping/picnic site you'll like the Von Trapp family climbing the Alps in the Sound Of Music! A truly great experience and absolutely beautiful! Go another 1.5 miles to the Panhandle for stunning views!