Capitol Hill


Day Hike - Capitol Hill to Queen Anne Hill Circuit

Night hike Capitol Hill, to Queen Anne Hill and return. Down the Howe Stairs, around South Lake Union and up the Galer Stairs to a superb Bhy Kracke Park viewpoint with a retrace to Blaine Stairs through the dirt bikers' Freeway Park. Many, many stairs and a city aglow with holiday lights.

COVID-19: Learn about our most up-to-date guidance for participants and leaders on our COVID-19 Response page. All participants and leaders must agree to the COVID-19 Code of Conduct before participating in this Mountaineers activity.
  • Easy
  • Moderate
  • Mileage: 7.1 mi
  • Elevation Gain: 1,200 ft
  • High Point Elevation: 400 ft
  • Pace: 2.2mph

Meet shortly before 6pm geared up at the entrance to the  Volunteer Park Conservatory (large glass structure) on Capitol Hill.  Nearest bus stop is #10 at E Howe and 15th Ave.

This night hike links the paired Howe St and Blaine St Capitol Hill stairways, favorites of the running and conditioning crowd, with the corresponding Galer Street hill climb on Queen Anne Hill.  Yes, 100's of stairs but all in good condition and well travelled.

The views are magnificent any time of year but over the holidays every crane in town is decorated and the houses on both hills have cheery displays. 

This is not a marathon or declared conditioner hike but we have around 5 miles in ~3 hours so the effective rate, while walking, will be around 2 mph.  Yes, we'll stop for photos and breathers as needed but you should be in reasonable condition for the altitude gain and loss.  Last year's identical December hike was a luminary fiesta.

Headlamps are required and reflective clothing is a good idea, if available.  Leaders will carry traffic wands and stop at all street intersections to minimize traffic risks. 


Capitol Hill

Required Equipment

Required Equipment

The Ten Essentials

  1. Navigation
  2. Sun protection
  3. Insulation (extra clothing)
  4. Illumination
  5. First aid supplies
  6. Fire
  7. Repair kit and tools, including knife
  8. Nutrition (extra food)
  9. Hydration (extra water)
  10. Emergency shelter
Trip Reports