The Cougar Mountain Ring or Grand Tour, as it has been referred to, has many variations. This route starts from the Wilderness Creek Trailhead and begins with a quick climb through a heavily forested area to the highest point on Cougar Mountain Regional and Wildland Park. The route is classified as moderate, but provides a good workout for the advanced trail runner as well.
The many trails of Cougar Mountain have much history associated with them. Fred’s Railroad Trail was named for Fred Round, who was known for his mining activities in the 1920s and lived his whole life on Cougar Mountain. Harvey Manning, a prolific author of several essential guidebooks to the Northwest, named Shy Bear Trail for the bear that spent much of the winter sleeping at the Shy Bear Bivouac junction with Wilderness Peak Trail. The bear was heard, but never seen. During visits to Cougar Mountain, the bears we named Huckleberry or Blackberry for their incomplete digestion have never shown themselves. Are they descendants of Shy Bear? Don’t let the excess of trail names discourage you. The trails are well marked and the various segments are short.
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