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North Bend

This was the trade center and shipping point of a farming and dairying district and sits in the shadow of craggy Mount Si (4,167 feet), a favorite hiking destination for locals, along with its shorter sister, Little Si (1,576 feet). They were named after homesteader Josiah “Uncle Si” Merritt, who built a cabin at the base of the peak in 1862. The rocky landscape is comprised of metamorphosed remnants of an oceanic plate volcano. The history of North Bend is closely tied to its strategic location as a gateway between Puget Sound and the Cascade Mountains: Transportation routes, including early foot trails, wagon roads, railroads, and historic, as well as modern, highways, have shaped the physical growth and the economy of the community. The town today, from downtown to its historic bridges, reflects that history.

North Bend was named after a sharp bend in the Snoqualmie River before it flows over Snoqualmie Falls. When platted by William T. Taylor and his wife, Mary, in February 1889, the town site was called Snoqualmie; later it was called Mountain View and South Fork. Loggers and sawmill hands from nearby camps and mills made it their headquarters. Paved streets, a city-owned water system, and trim houses testified to the town’s progressiveness. A shingle mill, opened in 1890 by William C. Weeks, made most of the wooden pipe used in Seattle’s Cedar River pipeline.

Points of Interest Points of Interest icon

North Bend Historic Commercial District

North Bend’s downtown is a designated King County Landmark District. The most notable commercial structure is the McGrath Hotel Building, at 101 W. North Bend Way, a Spanish Colonial Revival-style structure constructed in two stages, in 1922 and 1926, and listed on the National Register and Washington Heritage Register. It is a significant part of the history of highway and automotive transportation in Washington State and associated with the development of tourism, recreation and commerce in rural King County. It is a particularly prominent piece of architectural design here.. Downtown North Bend, and in particular the McGrath Hotel Building, continue to reflect the community’s long-time role as a provider of services to the traveler.

The North Bend Ranger District

The North Bend Ranger District consists of a group of administrative buildings built between 1933 and 1942 by the Civilian Conservation Corps for the Forest Service, and is listed in the National Register and Washington Heritage Register.

Si View Park

Si View Park is a direct product of a nationwide Depression-era economic recovery program that had significant impact on the physical development of King County. Since its completion in 1941, the park and its facilities have provided for the recreation needs of several generations. The park buildings are also significant for embodying distinctive characteristics of the Park Service Rustic (Civilian Conservation Corps) architectural style.

Covered Railroad Bridge

The covered railroad bridge near North Bend is on a spur of the Milwaukee Railroad that crosses the south fork of the Snoqualmie River. This wood-covered bridge was built in 1910 and is one of the few remaining covered bridges in the state.

Mount Si Bridge

The Mount Si Bridge is the oldest known pin-connected Pratt/Parker truss remaining in Washington. The 171-foot-long pinned steel Pratt/Parker through truss span is a significant engineering feature, originally constructed in 1904 to span the White River near Buckley, Washington. In 1955 it was disassembled and moved to its present site. During disassembly the concrete deck was carefully removed using rotary drills and/or concrete saws, and all members were carefully match-marked so there would be no interchange of parts. The disassembly/reassembly appears to have been a success, as the bridge’s basic structural components and physical appearance remain intact.