Burlington Hill

February 2, 2023


Burlington / Mount Vernon, WA

Burlington Hill is a lowly bump in the immediate vicinity of Burlington and is largely developed for residential uses. The very top of this hill is however, occupied by some communication structures and is claimed to be inside their “private property”. The area isn’t fenced off so one can still easily trespass and claim this summit. The drive to Burlington, WA from White Rock, B.C. would only take 1 hour and I made the spontaneous decision on Thursday morning since the weather was too “good” to stay home. The original plan was to drive out the night before for something bigger but I was too exhausted at work to do that. I opted to stay home instead, but when I woke up at 10 am and saw the clear skies I decided to head out for something smaller. A peak is a peak.

I didn’t leave home until almost 11 am as I was feeling lazy and demotivated. The border delay was minimal thank to having the convenient NEXUS card and I made to the base of the hill in exactly 1 hour. I could have driven to the summit but opted to park at the bottom of Hillcrest Drive for some exercise. There wasn’t a designated parking spot for hikers (obviously) so I parked in one of the nearby factories. I worried about my car but I did not see a “no parking” sign so I assumed that my car wouldn’t get towed.

Burlington Hill via Hillcrest Drive from north. GPX DL

The ascent was rather no-brainer as I just needed to take the Hillcrest Drive followed by Bella Vista Lane. All of those roads were nicely paved and I assumed the houses on Burlington Hill should be reasonably expensive. I did have to use GPS multiple times to navigate as I didn’t study the map beforehand. Near the summit I spotted the “private property” sign as warned in some other trip reports. Usually I would not give a fuck but on this particular day a worker’s truck was parked and someone was obviously working inside. I thought I was screwed but then came up with a creative solution by thrashing in from another direction. Instead of directly trespassing their property I opted to make my way into a residential property to the south (hopefully no dog) and then bushwhacked to the true summit from the east side. By doing so I successfully bypassed that worker and his truck and was able to claim the true, highest point.

Sterling Hill in the foreground from where I parked
About halfway up Burlington Hill I got some nice views
I assumed these houses must be expensive with the views…
Dense bushwhacking to thrash in from the east
Those are the communication structures on the summit of Burlington Hill
I wondered around and got some glimpses of views towards the Olympics
Me on the summit of Burlington Hill

I even wondered around to hopefully get some views but then spotted the worker so ran back to dive into the bushes. Thankfully I didn’t think he noticed my presence. I then made some hasty retreat back to the paved roads and leisurely walked down. I almost made an error by taking a wrong turn and this trip proved once again my sense of direction in urban area is much worse than in the wilderness. Thankfully I had my GPS handy and quickly corrected the embarrassing mistake. I then drove to the nearby Sterling Hill to hopefully find a way up there but learnt that hill’s entirely inside either someone’s farmlands or a quarry’s private property. I actually went into the quarry but they were actually actively blasting on this day, so I had to go back. That’s good as I was running a little bit late than I planned. Going home right now had earned me some valuable hours of napping time before showing up at work.

Me at one of the better viewpoints on the descent
Attempted Sterling Hill from the east side but they were actively working..