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Foothills Trail: Orting Professional Review and Guide
"The Foothills Trail sits atop an historic railroad bed and snakes through the river valley southeast of Tacoma. This 25-mile-long trail is a popular commuter route and recreational destination for bicyclists, while hikers enjoy shorter, more manageable segments of the trail. One of the most scenic sections, best hiked on a clear day for the unobstructed views of nearby Mt. Rainier, begins in Orting and follows the Carbon River upstream through farmland and forest.Mt. Rainier erupted 500 years ago and sent a 50-foot-deep mudflow down the valley to the northwest all the way to what today is Tacoma. Over time, the long, wide swath of mud settled and became a fertile valley; the Puyallup and Carbon Rivers, which originate on Mt. Rainier glaciers, flow off the mountain and converge on the valley floor southeast of Tacoma."
--Allen Cox, Best Easy Day Hikes: Tacoma (Falcon Guides).
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