Hiking & Backpacking

All posts

Three Generations Outside: A Love Letter to my Sons and Granddaughters

Our small town in rural Pennsylvania didn’t have a community center. Or a swimming pool. The only thing for us children to do when we weren’t in school was hike the surrounding hills and mountains. My family was poor, so we never went on vacations that didn’t involve a tent or camper. My strongest and most vivid memories growing up are from experiences in the outdoors. Spending time in the forests and mountains is as natural to me as breathing. Read more…

Car Camping and Backpacking Gear Comes to the Gear Library!

Our new Gear Library is committed to helping the next generation explore the outdoors. Since launching in August 2018, we have partnered with local youth-serving agencies to offer free access to outdoor gear to help increase access to our wild places.  We are excited to announce that car camping and backpacking gear are now included in our gear offerings! Attend our upcoming Gear Library orientation on April 8 to learn more. Read more…

Southcentral Alaska Goal Hikes

Hiking goals in Alaska are as diverse as the people you meet out on the trail; they come in all shapes, sizes and ambitions. But one thing is pretty universal: The ideal of an end-of-summer “goal hike” that you train for all summer long. Read more…

Leader Spotlight: Gordie Swartzman

For our Leader Spotlight this month we talked to Gordie Swartzman, a naturalists leader with the Seattle Branch who encourages new leaders to lead out of their passion! Read more…

DIY Organic Snacks To Bring On Your Next Hike

Enjoying the great outdoors can definitely work up an appetite. Packing the right amount of food and water on a hike is essential. Not only will you need energy, but it allows you to go further down the trail when it’s so easy to turn back. Seasoned hikers know the common snacks you can quickly throw in a bag, like beef jerky and nuts. But there are more options available. Consider these DIY organic snacks to bring on your next hike. Read more…

Basic Hiking Skills Course - May 6 & 8

Are you an experienced hiker/backpacker? Or maybe a a new hiker/backpacker? Someone who has  hiked or backpacked in the past and wants to become active again? Regardless of where you're starting, this two-evening course has something for you. It's designed for both new hikers or for people who have hiked before but want to step up their game with an introduction to safe hiking in the Pacific Northwest. Read more…

Thirst: 2600 Miles from Home

It takes a whole lot of gumption to take off on a journey by yourself, all the more for a woman on her own striding through the wild. When Heather "Anish" Anderson decided to set the self-supported Fastest Known Time for hiking the Pacific Crest Trail, she had the gumption but courage was something she had to work on. The following is an excerpt from her new memoir, Thirst: 2600 Miles from Home. Read more…

Winter's Beauty on the Old Sauk Trail

My knees sank into the snow. I had my face close to the quilt of white that covered the stair-step moss. In a few places, their feathery green leaves showed through. These are one of the biggest mosses in the Pacific Northwest. A new leaf grows each year from the stem of last year’s. An elegant bryophyte, with lacy foliage, it can form a matt a foot or more, thick. The combination of snow and moss made the forest floor look like a thick and fluffy winter comforter had been thrown across it. The leaf tissue looked frozen and shriveled, but it smelled alive; vibrant life was just waiting for a warm day. Read more…

Did You Know? Hole in the Ground & Crack in the Ground

Two geological wonders are hiding in Fort Rock State Park. Learn more about these hidden gems in our second installment of a blog series we're calling "Back-Road Adventures in Oregon". If you haven't, read the first blog about the history of Fort Rock State Park.  Read more…

Trail Tails: Coulson

Trail Tails is a special feature showcasing the mutts of The Mountaineers! This month we recognize Coulson, owned by Mountaineer Darcy Jayne.  Read more…