Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Hike of the Week: Brightwater, 1/9/21


We had an errand to run that took us into the mysterious city of Brier ... so I looked for a little walk to do while were were out that way. Brier is so odd, being tucked between Mountlake Terrace, Bothell, Lynnwood, and Kenmore, that it meant we could go a lot of places. Then I noticed it on the map: Brightwater. 

I had been curious about Brightwater since it had opened a few years ago. It's a curious blend of sewage treatment center (yep!) and "community amenity" -- with hiking trails, public art, and educational spaces all rolled into one. It's not a "destination hike", but as we were going to be nearby, it seemed the perfect time to finally explore it. 

We parked near the center building -- currently closed due to COVID-19, of course -- and were the first car there. We decided to walk past the center first, and then wander the trails in the north habitat. 

We saw some interesting art, like this branch made from pipe fittings: 

Cris Bruch, South Fork and Puddles

and these blown glass showing organisms that live in dirty water:

Ellen Sollod, Collection and Transformation, detail

The paths crossed creeks...

... wound up hills ...

... and back down to a which, rumor has it, is inhabited by OTTERS. (We didn't see any...)

Then we headed to the south side of the property. There's a busy highway right next to the space, but on early on a Saturday morning it wasn't all that noisy. 

Some long bridges took us across more wetlands -- you can see the freeway to the right of the image. 

We reached the southern edge of the property and turned back, finally seeing the actual treatment plant, oddly glittery in the sun. 

We turned back down along the loop trail rather than taking the shortcut back to our car, and passed another artwork based on a Coast Salish longhouse and and paddles raised in greeting. Grandfather's Wisdom by Andrea Wilbur-Sigo depicts salmon, an octopus, an orca, and the thunderbird. 

We went up the last hill back to our car and noticed that the parking lot was nearly full -- no surprise for such a lovely, if frosty, Saturday. 

It's a very nice space for a gentle walk, and almost everyone was wearing masks (though we didn't see many people!). Do I need to go back? Probably not... but I'm glad we made a visit there. 

Brightwater Center Loop

3.01 miles
151 feet elevation gain

1 comment:

  1. Not what I expected when I dropped by, but such interesting pictures and information.