GoHike:  Beginner Hiking Series - Foothills - 2021

Day Hiking Course

GoHike: Beginner Hiking Series

Is 2021 your year to start hiking? Do you want to experience the beauty of our Pacific Northwest trails, but don’t know where to begin? In the GoHike: Beginning Hiking Series, we start with basics: Preparation, safety, general fitness tips and knowledge to make hitting the trial less daunting, with a main goal in mind: Getting outdoors with others who are starting out, or who just want to hike at a comfortable, social pace, and making this journey together.

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 course.

Hiking is both calming and energizing. It’s a way to connect with nature, and build community with new people.  We'd love to help you make 2021 your year to start a lifetime of hiking, in one of the loveliest places in the world to do it!    

Are you holding back because of fear of not having the ‘right’ gear, of being unprepared or unsafe, of being out of shape, of being too slow, of just not fitting in?

 In the GoHike: Beginning Hiking Series, we start with basics:  Preparation, safety, general fitness tips and knowledge to make hitting the trial less daunting, with a main goal in mind:   Getting outdoors with others who are starting out, at a comfortable, social pace, making this journey together.

We will introduce you to the essentials of hiking, help you set personalized goals month by month during the course, and most of all, connect you with a community of fellow hikers.   All backgrounds, shapes and sizes will find a welcoming home with us!  So, whether you’re brand new to the trail or have been away for a while, this course will meet you where you are, help you find your trail to success, and have fun doing it!

Who is GoHike For?  

People who want to get out on a hike and would like a community and support to make it happen, starting from where they are!

  • Beginner hikers – or people who haven’t been out for a long time – and looking for an easy gradual start
  • People who are already comfortable hiking but want to find a community of people who are looking for easier more social hikes
  • Anyone who wants to hike in a social, mutually supportive atmosphere
  • We welcome participants from all backgrounds!

Course Schedule:

  • Student Orientation – March 9 (please register for this when you register for the course!
  • Pacing hikes (these are easy low-stress hikes to help you and us determine where you are in terms of gear and the pace and distance you can complete comfortably, and what your season goals are, so that we can agree together what level of hikes and pace would be the best fit for you to sign up for   - no pressure, no judgment!) – these will happen in March.  The Pacing Hikes will open for registration immediately after the orientation. (these are optional but we really hope that you'll sign up for one.  Space is limited so please sign up for only one.)
  • Must complete “Low Impact Recreation” training before mid April
  • Complete at least one course hike per month – mid-April to mid-September.  These will open for registration on the last Friday of each month for the upcoming month. 
  • Graduation: end of September


  • Open the GoHike listing and click on Manage Registration.  This will be to the right of the text when you bring up the listing on your computer, or at the very bottom when you open it on your smartphone.
  • A list of the hikes that are available to register for as of that date will appear on your screen with a checkbox next to each one.  Hikes that you've already registered for will already be checked.  You can check additional boxes, then scroll down and select SAVE and Enter.
  • If there is still space on the hike you will be registered for it.  If the hike is full you can request to be placed on a waitlist.  If you're first or second on the waitlist the chances are pretty good that youll make it onto the hike.

available Hike levels  - April through Sept 

  • Level 1     2-4 miles     up to 500 feet elevation gain
  • Level 2     2-5 miles     up to 750 feet elevation gain
  • Level 3     3-6 miles     up to 1,000 feet elevation gain
  • Level 4     3-7 miles     up to 1,500 feet elevation gain
  • Level 5     4-8 miles     up to 2,000 feet of elevation gain
  • We will offer a progression of hikes with small increases in mileage and gain by month but we'll also continue to make easier hikes available through the summer  for people who may not feel ready or interested to move up.
  • We'll organize periodic check-ins where we'll help you overcome any roadblocks and assess the level that you will want to try the next month.  (Don't worry, no pressure or 'cold calls' - just know that we're out there and available to help you set and meet your goals!)

Course Requirements:

  • Attendance at the GoHike orientation on March 9 
  • Completion of Low Impact Recreation video series
  • Completion of one of the community hikes  each month between April and September
  • “Extra Credit” :  Try a Mountaineers "open" hike, or plan and complete a personal or family hike

 Participant commitment and expectations:   

  • Ability to complete a 2-mile fairly flat pacing hike in under 1.5 hours including rest stops at the time you sign up for the series
  • Commitment to make the time to go on at least 1 course hike each month between mid April and mid September.
    • Early hikes in the series could involve a half day or long summer evening including driving to the trail, but after April the hikes are likely to require being able to get away on a weekend day for 6 to 8 hours including travel time.
  • Commitment to build your stamina over the course of the spring and summer to walk a little further and a little higher to get to more and more amazing places
    • This means going on walks near your home in between course hikes to continue to build your stamina over time
  • Willing to complete the Mountaineers ‘Low Impact Recreation’ video course during the first month of the series so that you will start out as a great ‘trail citizen’!
  • Commitment to borrow or buy the minimum gear for your safety in advance of going on the offered hikes.  It doesn’t have to be expensive or fancy gear, and you don't need to have everything at the very beginning - we’ll help you figure out what you need during your pacing hikes and then help you find the best deals!  
    • We will introduce gear recommendations at each level appropriate to the needs of the season and where the hikes will go.

Badges you will earn:

Course Requirements
Course Activity Date Availability Leader
June Hikes: 3.5 to 6 miles, 400 to 1,500 feet gain (optional)
Northwest Timber Trail
Mon, Jun 27, 2022
Registration closed Jun 25
4 participants
1 instructor
Required Equipment

Start from where you are and the gear and clothing you already have or can borrow!  We'll help you identify what else you might need for safety and comfort specific to each particular hike and the conditions when and where you're going, and we'll give you lots of ideas for how to get any needed pieces of gear or clothing without spending a lot of money.

  • If you don't feel that you're ready to buy the larger gear items up front, check out the Mountaineers Gear Library where you can rent some of the major hiking gear items!   You will need to provide your own clothing and footwear.
Course Materials

There are no materials for this course.