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Olympic Feats: Exploring the Queets Trail
Our group had originally intended to do an eight-day trip with three layover days at a base camp 5 miles beyond Pelton Shelter, where the river canyon forms at Service Falls. We were looking to explore a route to the Upper Queets Basin, which would have necessitated getting above the impassable canyon.
Scenic Splendor on the PCT; Rainy to Harts Pass
As is our annual custom for a dozen years now, my brother Keith flew out from Iowa for his annual fix of Seattle seafood, microbrews, and mountain backpacking. Our “to do” list had for some time included the stretch of the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) from Rainy to Harts Pass, but the relatively easy distance of 31 miles had previously caused us to divert to more challenging trips elsewhere.
A Field Guide to Hard Hats
Why do volunteers wear green, orange or blue hats? The answer can be found at WTA's annual Crew Leader College.
Just Say Howdy
A horsepacker shares advice on what to do when you meet four-legged hikers on the trail
Memories of Ira
A Tribute to Hiking Pioneer Ira Spring
Maintaining the Methow
WTA's trail maintenance program extends across the mountains into the Okanogan National Forest
Drying Out
Dehydrating your own food can be a cheap and tasty alternative to prepackaged backpacking meals
Tool Time
Trail maintenance volunteers get their pick of all sorts of cool tools
Baby on Board
Hiking with little ones can be challenging but fun
Freeze-Dried
WTA tests the good, the bad and the ugly in backpacking meals
Spotting Grizzlies
The excitement of looking for bears in British Columbia's Selkirk Mountains
Water Filters
Our test of products designed to give you clean, safe water in the backcountry
What's in a Name?
The geography of Washington's backcountry is loaded with history
Trails Ravaged
October rains and December winds wreak havoc on the state's trails, bridges and forest roads. And it's still only January ...
Softshells Sell
New materials invade the gear world
A Voice in the Wilderness
Forty Years of Fighting Forewards by Harvey Manning
Washington's Forgotten Mountains
The Kettle Range overflows with beauty and solitude
More Than Just Gear
Avalanche safety courses are essential for exploring winter and spring backcountry safely.
All in a Day's Pack
Three packs that can hold the ten essentials and much more.
Kids Are Volunteers Too
The Cohns make WTA volunteering a family-friendly activity
In for the Long Haul
Five long-distance routes offer challenges for the resilient hiker
Healthy Hiking
Getting fit on the trail is easy, fun, and good for you.
Gear for Your Feet
Boots and other products to pamper your piggies on the trail.
Going Solo
Women hikers confront concerns about being alone in the backcountry
A Lucky Find
Taking a spectacular trip to Horseshoe Basin
Teanaway Magic
Lofty peaks, geologic wonders and great summertime hikes beckon in the Alpine Lakes
Testing the Tents
Four new backpacking tents won't add much weight to your pack
Getting to the Top
Trails to Washington Summits
A Good Night's Sleeping Bag
Three pricey but high-quality bags offer the peak of comfort
Exploring the Dark Divide
Despite its intimidating name, the Dark Divide is a place of sunny ridges and tremendous wildflower meadows.
Fire 'Em Up
Our test of four backpacking stoves that use a variety of fuels
Vegetarian Chow for the Trail
Lipsmackin’ Vegetarian Backpackin’ by Christine and Tim Connors
Into the Deserts
The deserts of Central and Eastern Washington offer three seasons of explorations
Respecting Bird Creek Meadows
WTA helps repair trail on Yakama Indian Nation Land
Outfitting Fido
We review hiking gear for your canine companions
Olympic Event
The Skyline Trail is a test of endurance worthy of the other Olympics
Poet of the Mountains
Danger on Peaks by Gary Snyder
MSR's Evo Snowshoes
Improved design offers more gripping, less tripping
Super Jackets
Six extremely lightweight jackets that keep the wet off
The Map Makers
More than a century of topographic maps
Remembering Greg
We remember the man who made WTA what it is today
Washington's Wildflowers
Searching for early bloomers in the lowlands
Fixing Tiger Mountain
WTA volunteers repair trails in a very popular foothills park
Shoes for the Approach
Four hybrid shoes offer extra grip for hikers who like to scramble
Families Go Hiking
A guide to taking children of all ages on the trail, including a list of kid-friendly hikes, an interview about kids doing trail maintenance, and essays on backpacking as kids.
Hydration Solutions
We review five small packs designed to keep you well-hydrated
Hiking the Inland Northwest
Day hikes and overnight trips in Spokane’s backyard
Sleeping with Synthetics
We review four synthetic-fill sleeping bags with a range of prices
Way Out West
Rugged coast, trail ladders and fresh crab on B.C.’s West Coast Trail
Home Away from Home
WTA tests four 3-season tents, from heavy to lightweight
Going Light
Slimming down your gear to go faster and farther
Wasting Time in the North Cascades
North Cascades National Park offers a wealth of challenging and rewarding overnight trips
Slowing Down in Holden Village
The remote hamlet of Holden offers an escape to new experiences
Packing It All In
We review two full-featured, lightweight overnight packs
A Tough Job
Mount Baker-Snoqualmie trails coordinator faces many challenges
Exploring the Urban Wilderness
A review of The Street-Smart Naturalist by David B. Williams
Natural High
Exploring the Pacific Crest Trail north of Rainy Pass
A Sharp Lookout
Dodger Point Lookout provided eyes on the sky during World War II
Hiking Legends
WTA honors twelve elders who’ve made a huge difference for hiking and wilderness
A Tough Trip Over Easy Pass
Scenery, solitude and challenges in North Cascades National Park
Warm Up This Fall
Lightweight insulation that will keep you dry and toasty
Global Warming and Hiking Part 1
Ozone Polluting the Cascades: Alarming levels of ozone at Mount Rainier may making hiking there bad for you.
Global Warming and Hiking Part 2
Shrinking Glaciers, Dying Lichens: Pollution is destroyinh what we love about wilderness.
Global Warming and Hiking Part 3
Driving Force: Let's admit it: hikers contribute to air pollution.
Building On Badger
Flocks of volunteers build a 1.2-mile trail in a new reserve outside Richland
Wild in Washington
WTA profiles all 30 Wilderness areas in the state, from a tiny island refuge to the vast expanse of Olympic National Park.
Refuge
Discovering the landscape of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge
Ancient Trails
Hiking to Machu Picchu on Peru's Inca Trail
The Underwear to Wear
We test four sets of mid-weigh base layers
The Douglas Legacy
A review of The Footpaths of Justice William O. Douglas: A Legacy of Place
How to Store Your Gear
A few hours of maintenance can extend the life of your hiking stuff
Toleak by Moonlight
The sights and sounds of the Olympic wilderness coast in winter
Hiking Place Names
The stories behind names in the backcountry.
Light as the Wind
Five wind shirts offer decent rain protection and weigh very little
Breaking Trail at Beacon Rock
WTA volunteers start work on a new route in Southwest Washington
Desert Bloom
Umtanum Ridge is at its best mid-April to mid-May
Waterfalls
Searching for sublime waterfalls of the Cascades
Backcountry Food
From gorp to gourmet, Washington Trails dishes up a special issue of recipes, taste tests, tips and after-hike grub to fuel your next hike.
Taking Stock
Horses, mules and llamas are essential to WTA’s backcountry trail crews
Immersion Hiking
How to Spend 20 Summer Weekends on the Trail
Hiking (Almost) Forever
Hiking beyond age 50: Take your time and pick your hikes carefully
High-Tech Sandals
New technical sandals morph hiking boots with sandals
Getting to Know the Mountain
A journal from the Wonderland Trail around Mount Rainier
Alpine Lakes Reflections
Thoughts on the past, present and future of the popular wilderness
Mad River Memories
Finding sanity in the Entiat Mountains; plus, how to find soft beds for day hiking adventures.
Backpacking Tents for a Crowd
Roomy, lightweight tents for families, friends and pets
Where to Hike with Kids
A review of Joan Burton's "Best Hikes with Kids: Western Washington and Cascades"
Better Sleep On It
Four new sleeping pads offer different strategies for comfort
Mountain Butterflies
Spotting butterflies on the wing in the Cascades and Olympics
Hiking "Round the Mountain"
Exploring the slopes of the forgotten volcano: Mount Adams
Greg Ball Trail Completed!
WTA youth crews build a fantastic new trail to Wallace Lake
Traversing the Bailey Range
Solitude and scenery on Olympic National Park's premier high route
British Columbia Hiking
So many reasons for hiking north of the border.
The William O. Douglas Trail
A new 75-mile route celebrates the life of the justice and conservationist
Alpine Fly Fishing
How and where to catch trout in the backcountry
Last Child in the Woods
A review of Last Child in the Woods by Richard Louv
Lowland Trails
Maintaining suburban trails just as important as the backcountry
Mount St. Helens in Autumn
An overnight trip, day hike suggestions, and an account of a climb to the summit of St. Helens
Choosing Trails to Work On
How WTA creates its work party schedule for the year
Stairway to Heaven
Clear lakes, huckleberries and easy trails make Indian Heaven a delight
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