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Autumn In Leavenworth, Wa


The City of Leavenworth is one of the greatest tourist destinations in our state. The "Bavarian Village" is perhaps best known for its incredible year-round schedule of outdoor activities and events. No wonder that this town has been chosen by National Geographic as being one of the "50 Next Best Places" to live & play.

Till recently, I used to come to Leavenworth twice a year. In the spring/summertime, I'd come here to raft the scenic Wenatchee river, climb at Peshastin Pinnacles or ride my bike on miles of cross country trails around town. During winter, XC (cross country) skiing, snowboarding at the Leavenworth Ski Hill or snowmobiling through the spectacular Cascade Mountains are my favorite local activities.

In October, I was invited to spend a few days at Sleeping Lady Resort, local mountain retreat that spans nearly 70 acres in a serene forest with eco-friendly lodges and public buildings tucked among the whispering pines beside the pristine Icicle River.

It was my first time in Leavenworth in autumn, and that visit gave me a new appreciation for the season and the town itself.

Though, truth to be told, late October-November are "the slow" months for the outdoor enthusiasts here due to slightly colder weather, more rain/fog and fewer days of sunshine.
But the real beauty of this area is that you will never run out of things to do.

The Icicle River Trail, adjacent to Sleeping Lady is about 8 km of trails winding through woods, over bridges, and across open meadows along Icicle Creek. The trail is great for a an easy morning run, challenging biking ride or an enjoyable horseback ride offered by local outfitter year round. You can also rent a bike at the office to enjoy this trail or for a leisure ride into town.

In the late morning I went for a short hike up the Icicle Ridge hiking trail which is just a short ride from Sleeping Lady and 1.5 miles from Leavenworth.

Though, Icicle Ridge is one of the longest, highest hikes in the Alpine Lakes Wilderness, it can be hiked for as long or as short as you like. Due to poor weather, I hiked just two miles to a small flat spot on the ridgetop, where the trail splits. The trail on your left keeps going after this point to the junction with Fourth of July trail. Later I was surprised to find out that it was also "a very popular" mountain biking trail ( if you are ready to climb 5000 feet and carry/push your bike).

I've never considered mushroom picking an outdoor activity, but while hiking along the ridge found myself drawn to this fungus. Not being sure what it was I decided to leave mushroom picking (and cooking) to the professionals. Next morning at Kingfisher Dining Lodge, I was treated to a delicious breakfast of scrambled eggs, sausages, bacon and.. perfectly cooked, juicy, meaty portabello mushrooms !

For me, staying at Sleeping Lady Resort wasn't my usual hotel experience when I couldn't wait to get out of the room and into the outdoors. There you are in the outdoors ! So, most of my time I spent wondering around the property, enjoying the scenery , relaxing on the bank of Icicle Creek ( they have a few great fire pits right by the water), stopped by their organic garden and KOHO Broadcasting Studios.


I would certainly recommend a trip to Leavenworth and a visit to Sleeping Lady Resort any time of the year. They have great adventure packages all year round, everything from easy going hiking, birding and tubing to more "extreme" like rock climbing and backcountry skiing.

2 comments:

The Accidental Bavarian said...

If you are going to Leavenworth, drop by our site first to see what is happening in town. We've built a site with a whimsical tone from a tourist's point of view. We have a blog of our travels and things we've found there that we like.

Visit us at Accidental Bavarian

Paul Frolov said...

Hey Scotte and Renae,

Thanks for your link! So much great information. I will definitely follow your blog to stay updated on what's going on in my favorite town !