Just because it's cold outside doesn't mean you have to be stuck inside.
It's great to get outdoors any time of year and fortunately, there is no offseason for hiking. That's why Teresa Hagerty of Cascade Mountain Adventures joined New Day NW to tell us about a selection of safe and family-friendly hikes all around Washington that are especially fun in the winter.
These five hikes were selected due to their reasonable year-round access, minimal/non-existent avalanche risk profile, and terrain suitable to most outdoor adventurers. There is something here for adventurers young, old, and fuzzy throughout the winter season. Dogs are permitted on the first four hikes in the list below:
A lovely deep forest stroll through mossy trees on the banks of the Middle Fork Snoqualmie River. This six-mile out-and-back rolling trail crosses several gorgeous creeks and offers a beautiful location to listen to the rainfall. Note: There is no cellular service in the Middle Fork Snoqualmie area.
South Puget Sound:
This short and sweet trail ascends 1,000 vertical feet in roughly a mile. The summit of Mount Peak is newly adorned with a beautiful replica fire lookout. This trail is easy to follow and the modest elevation of 1,800 ft. offers an accessible location all winter long.
The Lake Wenatchee State Park offers four miles of easy travel snowshoe travel along the shores of Lake Wenatchee. Remember to pack or purchase your SnoPark Permit and enjoy a winter day by the water. Protip: The sunset on a clear day is spectacular!
Riverside State Park is located just outside of the heart of Spokane and offers miles of beautiful winter strolls. Visitors can trek as far or as short as they like to enjoy views of the Spokane River and near-urban forest therapy.
The ocean awaits those who want a break from snowy weather. The 9.4-mile roundtrip hike to Cape Alava in Olympic National Park is a mostly flat trail through the trees to the Pacific Ocean. Note though that your furry friends will need to stay at home as dogs are not permitted on National Park trails. A permit is required for overnight camping and bear canisters are required year-round to protect food from the clever resident raccoons.