Coal Creek Trail

EASY 556 reviews
#1 of 5 trails in

Coal Creek Trail is a 5.1 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Renton, Washington that features a waterfall and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 5.1 miles Elevation Gain: 567 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dog friendly

kid friendly

hiking

nature trips

walking

bird watching

running

forest

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

A short hike through the woods while exploring the area's coal mining history. This is an easy hike that will lead you through a historical coal mining region. While the towns are gone you will still be able to view some artifacts from the past. Along the way you will see a coal mine shaft and an information kiosk where you can learn more about its history. There are also a few railroad cart turntables but they are difficult to spot as their concrete foundations are all that is left and the forest has now grown over them. During your hike you will also catch the smell of coal and burnt cinders from time to time. Most of the trail is packed dirt but there are a few hills that can be slippery especially after it rains. If you start your journey from the Red Town parking lot, you will quickly come across an old coal mine shaft. It has been sealed but when standing next to it you can still smell the coal from below. Next to the mine is an information kiosk that will provide you with a little history of the area. It is interesting to read about the towns that were here and try to imagine what life would have been like while traversing the trail of today. On the kiosk you will see a few photos of the miners and their mining village. A little further down you will come to the North Fork Falls along with a few benches to sit and enjoy the waterfall. The falls are not large and it is best to visit them after a few days of heavy rain. From here you will walk through the forest and onto a short section of the trail composed of gravel. The trail is mostly a gentle down hill hike where you will make a few stream crossings on the newly renovated bridges. Soon you will find yourself in a clearing with many black berry bushes, watch out for the thorns as the trail is overgrown at times. Once you make your way back into the shaded forest the trail begins its steep decline. At first you will be hiking down a small ridge but it will begin getting steeper and muddier from here. For this next section you may need to take advantage of the trees and their roots to guide yourself down, especially if the trail is wet. Once at the bottom the trail will level out and you will come to the last two bridges. Once you cross the first bridge you will come to the Forest Drive trailhead. Continue straight to cross another bridge and a short distance later you will see a small retention pond along with the fish ladders at the end of the trail. At a distance of 2.8 miles, 5.6 miles out and back, this hike will provide you and your family with a great short outing along with some history. However if you are looking for a longer hike there are 2 connecting trails, Primrose Trail (.8 miles) and the Forest Drive Trail (about 4 miles out and back depending on route), which can make this a full day hike.

hiking
10 days ago

Excellent local hike that I’ve reached from the trailhead opposite the bus stop for the 240 direction Renton on 119th Street S.E. Even the section to reach the Coal Creek Trail is enjoyable. Narrow and undulating till you reach the parking lot of the Coal Creek Trail parking lot. Excellent trail system with a Starbucks to pull into at Newcastle Commons to warm up.

hiking
muddy
16 days ago

hiking
muddy
washed out
21 days ago

A landslide covers the trail near (approximately.25 mile) the coal creek access point. A little muddy in places. Very wet today.

hiking
muddy
21 days ago

hiking
muddy
21 days ago

hiking
blowdown
27 days ago

There’s a tree down and considerable mud as of 12/22. Easy, short hike. Way too many dogs offleash.

recorded Coal Creek Trail

running
blowdown
1 month ago

hiking
muddy
1 month ago

Smells great, tree down, not much to see. Great for dogs though.

hiking
muddy
1 month ago

1 month ago

Beautiful place for a short hike when time is limited. The smell from the old coal mine are incredible you know when the creek is close because you can smell it.

hiking
muddy
2 months ago

hiking
muddy
2 months ago

A lovely close to home hike today with a bit of mining history attached. This is an easy trail that runs through the greenbelt area in my neighborhood, though it is part of Cougar Mountain Park. This trail is very well maintained, though there are some muddy areas but nothing you can't get around. This is a dog friendly trail that follows Coal Creek with some small falls along it. A great trail for a quick easy hike.

hiking
muddy
2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

Loved this trail- Gorgeous early morning hike, filed with colorful trees, leaves all over, sunrise was gorgeous shining on the trail - creek & waterfall.. simply beautiful

hiking
3 months ago

This was great trial

hiking
3 months ago

easy and pretty

hiking
3 months ago

Nice chill ke

running
3 months ago

In good condition for being October. Not too many people for a Saturday even though the parking lot was full. Totally worth it.

recorded Coal Creek Trail

hiking
muddy
rocky
3 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

barely a trickle of a waterfall. same for far country falls. make sure yuu take a map or have gps access. lots of different routes to take.

running
muddy
4 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

The trail seems to be well maintained. Very shady, some bugs, dog friendly and the creek is great (low, but normal for this time of year). The trails are marked but tend to go in different directions. Will plan to return many times in the future.

hiking
bugs
4 months ago

Good hike! Nice sound of the creek and lots of greenery! There are so many other trails you cross to that made it a little difficult to stay on track. There were a lot of bugs out when I went but nothing too crazy. Would totally do this trail again!

hiking
4 months ago

I started trail running on this trail so it's got a special place in my heart. I love the cool forest here along with the sounds of water flowing and leaves blowing. I highly suggest this hike. you won't regret it.

hiking
4 months ago

Pretty and shaded trail. The waterfall and creek were pretty dried up. Lots if interconnecting trails for horseback riders, and the trail felt very dog friendly. I started via the Sky Country trailhead entrance and its not super straightforward from there to the coal creek trail, but it's a good option if you want to ease up on some of the steep parts that the entrance the app tells you to do. Overall well kept area.

hiking
5 months ago

I really like that this is only about 15 or 20 minutes from my house on the Eastside, so really accessible. When I need a hiking fix, but don't want to drive an hour away, I go here. Very well maintained, great for the kids as well. easy with some water to play with, some history to learn. I've been here several times, and I've never noticed any strange smells as mentioned extensively in another review.

hiking
5 months ago

This was tough for the out of shape mama (me) with some steep climbs but my hubs, 2 kids (10&13) and our two dogs loved it.

hiking
5 months ago

Saw a bear run across the trail. Beautiful casual

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