Wednesday, September 19, 2012

North Admiral and Alki in West Seattle

A beach-loving buddy and I went to West Seattle, today, intending to walk along the beach in the Alki neighborhood. When we arrived, visibility was so low that we couldn't see the water and decided to walk in the North Admiral neighborhood and save the beach walk for a clearer day.

Our 9.3 mile walk took us around Schmitz Preserve Park - an Olmsted Legacy Park and backyard wildlife habitat. We saw two main entrances and did walk into the park but, without a trail map, we feared we'd get lost so we returned to the streets.

We did see some smaller entrances, one had some great wood sculptures pointing the way; another was closed and appeared to lead to a very steep trail.

Another was open but also led to a steep trail; we weren't wearing our hiking boots so, once again, we returned to the streets.

What we thought was going to be a beach walk on a fairly flat terrain wound up being a hilly walk and, due to the fog, we weren't even rewarded with the great views we knew must be there. We came to a few staircases
and saw a majestic golden weeping willow tree in a lovingly landscaped yard.

A nearby plaque informed us that it is over 100 years old and is part of the Seattle Heritage Tree Program.

This neighborhood is home to Alki Elementary

which is right next to Alki Community Center and its imaginative playground

and Schmitz Park Elementary School.

Along the way, we chatted with friendly residents who suggested places to eat and appeared to love their neighborhood. We spotted many beautiful patios, gardens, fences,

and street edges.

We saw sidewalk art

and a Husky fan's mailbox.

I will be happy to return to this area to enjoy the beach on a clear day and to explore the trails in Schmitz Park.

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