Scott Brown and his wife Get Naka love the outdoors, particularly hiking. They bundled up for the beautiful trek they planned to make it up Teneriffe Falls and take in the sparkling white landscape.
Best known by its nickname Kamikaze Falls, this spectacular trail lies in the North Bend area of Washington. It winds 5.4 miles round-trip with a breathtaking view at its highest point 2,370 feet high, but it also is home to a surprising legend.
What Scott and his spouse didn’t know is that there is a creature lurking along Kamikaze Falls, one that sniffs out newcomers to the trail. It catches everyone off guard at first.
Once they reached the old Tenerife trailhead, they stumbled across something large, dark-colored and … fluffy. They weren’t sure what exactly was ahead of them, so they cautiously shuffled closer through the powdery snow to find out.
It had sharp teeth, long claws and a happily wagging tail. The quite large furball waiting for them was someone’s dog!
He seemed friendly enough. In fact, he seemed to know the trail and terrain like an expert mountaineer.
Scott told The Dodo that he joked to his wife at first that it was a bear. But this loyal dog was less like a frightening bear and more of an official greeter to Kamikaze Falls.
As Scott and his wife snapped photos, the dog sat and enjoyed their company, watching their antics. He also tried to warn Scott of looming trouble ahead.
“(He) barked at me as I dangerously crossed the snowy bank to the other side. Then he escorted us all the way down.”
But they worried that he was lost or had been abandoned. While chilling at a scenic spot, Scott looked a little closer at their new-found friend.
He had an ID tag hanging from his collar. After Scott read the inscription, he and his wife had a good laugh about their hiking buddy.
“Hi, I’m Smokey. I live nearby so please don’t take me. I like to follow hikers sometimes.”
How appropriate that a local dog living near the wooded area and looked like a small bear would be named Smokey. Scott and Get knew their new pal would be just fine once they left, especially after reading the back side of his ID tag.
“Don’t worry, I’ll go home when I get tired. My people love me a lot. Thanks for being nice!”
Scott and his wife couldn’t believe they had a chance encounter with what turned out to be a local legend. Apparently, Smokey the dog loves wandering down to the trail and escorting countless hikers along their way.
After they hopped into their car in the parking lot, Smokey meandered back toward the nearby neighborhood where he presumably lives. The couple couldn’t believe that as they parted ways, the pup turned to give them one quick bark, then continued on his way.
What a good boy! If ever you’re in the area – who knows, maybe he’ll accompany you on your hike too.