I may be a bit bias as the Centennial Trail literally runs right by my house, as in across the street from my front door, but I think it’s one of the better paved trails around. It runs for 29 miles, from Historic Snohomish to just north of little ‘ol Bryant, passing thru both Lake Stevens and Arlington along the way. Following former railway lines, there are benches, picnic tables and even a drinking fountain or two sprinkled along the route.
When I was a kid, long before cell phones and motorized scooters, my cousin and I would meet up on the trail & have picnics. He would call from his house in Lake Stevens and I would answer at my house in Snohomish & after a brief discussion of who was bringing what to the trailside grubdown, we would hope on our bikes and take off towards each other. We would meet someone along the way, pull our dusty bikes over and eat whatever food we were able to smuggle out of our respective houses. Then we would climb back on our metal steeds and pedal back home again.
That kind of childhood freedom makes me nostalgic not only because my life now has far fewer bicycle filled days but also because I fear that carefree freedom, which should be such an integral part of childhood, is fast disappearing. Though London is too small yet to even ride a bike, I hope to someday cover all 29 miles with him; from Snohomish to the Nakashima Farm which marks the end of the trail. And, in the spirit of raising an independent young man, I might even let him ride a bit ahead of me.
Runs from Snohomish, WA
to Nakashima Farm, north of Bryant, WA