Hiking & Backpacking

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Best Waterfalls in Northern California’s Cascades

Northern California is home to the southern reaches of the California Cascades, and this rugged volcanic landscape contains some of the most beautiful waterfalls in the western United States. Here are four of my favorites that are featured in my hiking guidebooks, all linked by CA Highway 89: Read more…

Dealing with Bears 101

For hikers, Montana is close to heaven. Thousands of miles of trails lead to scenic mountain lakes, wildflower-covered meadows, and dramatic viewpoints. All winter long (and our winters are really long) Montanans eagerly await the snowmelt when we can once again head for our beloved backcountry. But the melting snows also signal the time when our state’s famous bruins awaken, looking to replenish the fat layer lost during their winter sleep. We humans typically have the opposite seasonal timing on fat layers – another excellent reason to hit the trails. Read more…

Section Hiking the Pacific Crest Trail: Northern California + More - May 22

Ever thought about backpacking sections of the Pacific Crest Trail in Northern California? Philip Kramer, author of the new book Hiking the Pacific Crest Trail: Northern California (Mountaineers Books, 2018) shares key information in this wide-ranging interview. Read more…

Five Things You Didn't Know About Fire Lookouts

You may have hiked to a couple fire lookouts already, sweating your way up a steep trail until you reach an historic wooden cabin perched on a mountaintop. But here are a few things you might not know about lookouts as hiking destinations. Read more…

How To: Lightweight Food Packing & Preparation

Few subjects cause so much hesitation on the part of new backpackers as trail food! How much do I need? What kinds should I pack? The questions are endless, and luckily we have a few tips to help you stay happy and well fed on the trail! Read more…

A non-cook impresses friends with this Dirty Gourmet Trail Brittle

I've lived a charmed life, insofar as I like to eat and have a spouse who loves to cook. I'll gladly wash dishes as my part of this bargain, a chore I've managed with a moderate degree of competence. That said, I was intrigued by a recipe in Dirty Gourmet: Food for Your Outdoor Adventures, a new cookbook from Mountaineers Books. Read more…

Bears Ears Guidebook Author Answers Five Questions About The Monument

Morgan Sjogren’s new guidebook, The Best Bears Ears National Monument Hikes, came out in January, less than two months after the current administration reduced its boundaries by 85 percent. Published by Colorado Mountain Club (CMC) Press, Morgan’s book is the only guidebook published for this region. But Morgan, a writer, adventurer, and competitive trail runner, fell in love with Bears Ears while running in it and wanted to encourage others to explore this region, too. We asked her five questions  about the book and the Monument. Mountaineers Books is the worldwide distributor of CMC Press books. Read more…

Five Questions for PCT Hiker and Author Philip Kramer

We got in touch with author Philip Kramer to ask him a few questions about writing his recent book,  Hiking the Pacific Crest Trail: Northern California. Here's what he had to say. Read more…

Top Ten Tips to Find Less Traveled Trails

The first time I hiked up to Rattlesnake Ledge was in the early 1990’s. The trail was pretty rudimentary following alongside a procession of signs warning you not to venture off the trail into the adjacent public watershed. I brushed through knee-high salal and kept my eyes on the ground lest a loose rock made a play for my ankle. Eventually, I reached the ledge. The view east across Rattlesnake Lake and into the U-shaped glacier-carved Cedar River Valley and South Fork Snoqualmie River Valley was breathtaking — and I had it all to myself! While nearby Mount Si and Tiger Mountain were seeing some play, I was out on the Trail Less Traveled — and it paid off — solitude and a wonderful backcountry experience. Read more…

Sign-up for a backpacking course this spring!

The backpacking season in western Washington can be short - but boy is it sweet! With warmer weather on the horizon, many of our members are starting to think about spending long days on the trails, with campsites in the high country. Read more…