Hiking & Backpacking

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Top Nature Hikes in Tacoma

You may not immediately look to Washington’s third largest city for a walk in the wild. So be prepared to have Tacoma surprise you. Within the hustle and bustle of this metropolitan area are some large natural areas laced with excellent trails that invite walkers, hikers, and runners of all ages and abilities to explore and be wooed. So no need to head to the backcountry this weekend if you're looking for a great place to do an all-day hike, long run, or get-back-to-nature stroll. Check out these three urban wildernesses in and near the City of Destiny from my new book Urban Trails: Tacoma instead.  Read more…

Armchair Adventures For Fall

It's that time of year when the mercury plummets, the rains arrive, and we want to wrap ourselves in a warm blanket and cozy up with a book. But that doesn't mean we're going to stop exploring! How does traveling Italy by bike, venturing into the Alaskan wilderness to photograph wildlife, or joining the thru-hiking community on the Appalachian Trail sound? How about making a ground-breaking ascent of Mount Everest via the West Ridge, becoming the first North American woman to do so? All this and more is available for your reading pleasure, so settle in, pour yourself a hot beverage, and enjoy our armchair adventure recommendations. Read more…

Did You Know: Summit Lake Trail

If you’re eager to find a place to take in the beauty of the natural world, the Summit Lake trail ought to be on your list. Bringing you to a crisp alpine lake with spectacular views of Mt. Rainier, this trail is a treat for hikers and naturalists in any weather. Read more…

Trail Talk: Better than the 10 Essentials, Pack Plenty of Knowledge on Your Next Hike

One of the biggest highlights of my career as an outdoors writer so far was being flown to Los Angeles last spring for a TV shoot on the Weather Channel’s SOS How to Survive. The program is hosted by Creek Stewart, a nationally renowned survival instructor and author. Each episode of SOS How to Survive spotlights true life stories involving folks who have dealt with life-threatening situations (often in the wilderness) interjected with segments on survival tips and skills. Read more…

Three Easy Hikes to Enjoy in Joshua Tree National Park

Featuring stunning, easy hikes to explore three distinct regions of Joshua Tree National Park (Lost Horse Valley, Queen Valley, and Pinto Basin), the following is excerpted from Scott Turner's Hike the Parks: Joshua Tree National ParkExcerpt edited for space and clarity. Read more…

Exploring Swift Creek and the Lake Ann Trail at Mount Baker

"See that ledge that runs to the right from Lower Curtis Glacier?” Stewart pointed to the far slope behind him. “That is the intersection of two terranes. Shuksan greenschist is above the line, and Darrington phyllite is below it. A thrust fault runs between them." Stewart (his geology training evident), stood in front of us, pointing at diagrams in his notebook and then the cliff. We had stopped for lunch near Lake Ann. I stood off to the side, letting him talk. He teaches several courses for The Mountaineers, and I’d hoped he’d come on my trip. He could master this geology that I’d found so confusing. We’d seen so much thanks to him. Read more…

Did You Know? Teely Creek Trail

The Teely Creek trail has much to offer hikers: fishing, camping, swimming, geocaching, and a relaxing atmosphere amidst an old growth forest. Read on to learn more about this incredible area, and how you can make the most of your trip if you decide to explore the trail.  Read more…

Gnar Face: A Slip on Aasgard Pass

Our blog series Gnar Face documents the funny, painful, and unfortunate things we’ve done to ourselves in the outdoors. In this edition, we hear from Communications Associate Hailey Oppelt about poor planning on Aasgard Pass. Take a look at the last edition of Gnar Face for more tails of woe and misery. Read more…

Mount Rainier Infinity Loop: Bringing a Vision to Life

“You’re doing what?!” I gasped. It was a typical Monday evening in July and we were sitting at the Elliot Bay Brewery for the launch party of The Mountaineers first peer-to-peer adventure based fundraising campaign, Our Parks | Your Adventure. Being the year of the National Park Centennial, we hoped our campaign would inspire individuals to seek an adventure of their choosing in a National Park while fundraising for The Mountaineers youth programs. Read more…

Trail Tails: Gumbo

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