Explorer Falls (Trip Report)

I feel a cinematic sequence coming on…

Lake Roesiger, Snohomish County, WA- Today was a respite in the recent cold snap we’ve been having here in the Great Northwest. Not by much, but it was above freezing most of the day. 

Under my feet was a mixed bag of ice and packed snow but mostly gravel. No blowdown or obstacles to speak of, clear to the falls…

Except for one point where the road is replaced with a big trench and a bunch of logs shoved around at odd angles to make it as annoyingly obstructive as possible!

It’s either an avant garde homage to World War I era trench warfare or they’re trying to keep the vigilante motorists out. Either way you’ll have to contend with it. 

Sprinkle on some Ice-Melt and that scramble is as right as rain!


Despite the balmy 35°F day, the waterfall was still wonderfully frozen. 

Impressive ice formations grew on anything they could within the spray radius of the falls, including the mysterious “Hobbit Hole”.

The trail to the top of Explorer Falls was clear of any significant impediment or serious traction issues. 

Does this look like the Virgin Mary or is it just me?


King County Search and Rescue was conducting field training along the Explorer Falls route. 

For anyone hiking out to the falls today, it would have been impossible not to notice the curious two person teams with their plastic coated maps in tow. 

I stopped to ask one plucky, yet perplexed looking pair what they were up to:

ME:”Hey, you fellas part of a search party or something?”

FELLA#1:”Yessir, we’re here on a training scenario with King County Search and Rescue!”

ME:”That’s cool! What you looking for?”

FELLA#2: “His water bottle.” 

Yeah, yeah I know, these writers are terrible! But hey, you get what you pay for!  This is a proudly B-list site! 

I like that they went with the “Chainsaw Massacre” trail signage motif


Take the Snohomish-Wenatchee exit off I-5 onto Highway 2 in Everett. At milepost 10 turn left onto 100th St SE (Westwick Road). Just past the French Creek Grange, the road bears sharply to the left (north) and becomes 171st Ave. Continue on 171st Ave SE to a 4-way stop; turn right onto Dubuque Road (36th SE) go east on Dubuque Road for approximately 6 miles; turn left onto S Lake Roesiger Road; bear right at the Y to continue on S Lake Roesinger. Drive 2.3 miles take a right onto Monroe Camp Road. Drive 1.3 miles and then bear left at the Camp Edward (formerly Camp Brinkley) sign and follow the road to end. Do not go up the logging road on the left, stay on the pavement. There is a yellow gate blocking you from going any further and an area to park on the left-wta.org

All together I pranced around for 3.5 miles.

Happy Trails!

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