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News for Families

Get the latest advice for hiking with kids, opportunities for getting out with your family, and hear from family experts in the WTA community.

Get the latest advice for hiking with kids, opportunities for getting out with your family, and hear from family experts in the WTA community. 

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Progress Report: Backpacking All Year

Apr 05, 2018

Washington Trails editor and mom Jessi Loerch set a goal for herself to backpack once a month this year. She's on track, and finding the sweet spot between spending alone time in the wilderness and sharing nature with some close friends.

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Learning Skills, Building Strength on All-Girls Work Parties

Apr 04, 2018

For 10 years, WTA's all-girl trips have empowered young women on trail.

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Earth Day Hikes for Your Family

Apr 03, 2018

Celebrate Earth Day with the whole family this year. Here are several tree-hugger hikes that will allow hikers of all ages to appreciate Washington's beauty.

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Advice from a Park Ranger: Plan Your Best Vacation at Olympic National Park

Dec 11, 2018

Find a quiet corner of one of America's most popular national parks with this advice from a ranger who works there.

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Go Camping with your Family this Winter

Feb 02, 2018

Winter and early spring are a great time to go camping with your family. Here's why, and some tips on how to do it.

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Prepare Yourself: Backcountry Trip Signups Are Coming

Jan 23, 2018

WTA's backcountry trips are some of the most popular volunteer events we host. Learn how you can be the best prepared for when registration opens.

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Where are They Now? Simon van Tulder, Youth Ambassador

Feb 15, 2018

Learn how a past Youth Ambassador is using his leadership development to further his passion for engineering.

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How a Teacher Is Opening Up a Whole New World for Seattle Teens

Dec 27, 2017

We sit down with Center School teacher Alex Scilletta to find out how a simple snowshoe adventure can make a difference in the lives of students.

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Youth Volunteers Restore Years of Neglect on Ingalls Creek Trail

Feb 23, 2018

This past summer, a group of 10 dedicated teens spent sixteen days camped beside Ingalls Creek, improving one of the key access routes to the Stuart Range and the Alpine Lakes Wilderness.

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Think You Can't Go Camping Every Month? This Mom Did.

Nov 30, 2017

Find out what worked for mom and Washington Trails editor Jessi Loerch.

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Help Save the Every Kid in a Park Program

Oct 10, 2017

Now in its second year, the Every Kid in a Park program has allowed hundreds of thousands of fourth graders from around the country to gain free entry to over 400 National Parks and Monuments. Although the successful program has already been approved for a third year, Congress has recently delayed action on a bill that would have made the program permanent.

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Youth Ambassador Program Reaches New Heights

Jun 20, 2017

Over the past nine months, WTA's youth ambassadors have blown us away with their creativity, hard-work and dedication to the hiking community. Whether they hail from Darrington, Olympia, Yakima or Stanwood, our ambassadors have been giving back in more ways than we could have ever imagined.

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With WTA Support, Community Partners Get Youth Outside

Jun 23, 2017

This spring, our youth program worked with more than 15 organizations to bring hundreds of kids, tweens and teens out for at least one day of service. Over the past few months, WTA has been honored to partner with such a diverse range of schools and youth groups across the state.

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Youth Involvement Leads to Improved Trail Resources

Jul 24, 2017

Ingrid Phillips, an avid hiker, backpacker, and sea kayaker, is a sophomore at Stanwood high school, and member of WTA’s 2016-2017 Youth Ambassador cohort. This winter, she worked with an elementary school class to improve trail visibility on Camano Island.

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Father's Day: Life Lessons from Time on the Trail with Dad

Jun 16, 2017

From how to start a fire to developing a sense of wonder, outdoor fathers have a lot to give.

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Fourth-Graders: Get into Your Park

Jun 06, 2017

Now in its third year, the Every Kid in a Park program continues to introduce children to America's public lands, encourage them to connect with nature and discover the magic of being outdoors.

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Recipes and Tips for Allergic Hikers

Jun 06, 2017

Got an allergy-prone little one? You'll want to read Sarah Kirkconnell's tips and recipes for keeping them healthy and happy on trail. 

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Bring on the Bugs: A Key to Identifying 10 Common Washington Insects

May 25, 2017

Although they are small, insects control much of our natural environment! They pollinate flowers, decompose organic material into soil, and provide food to many other species. The next time you and your family are out hiking, try to spot one of these ten common Washington insects.

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Adventure: Mothers Make It Happen

May 12, 2017

Mothers (grandmothers, aunts and cousins) have opened the doors for so many of us to the outdoors. In honor of Mother's Day, we bring you four stories of mothers leading the charge on trails.

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Hiking With Kids: It's All About the Cupcakes

May 12, 2017

A hiking-obsessed mom gets her reluctant 6-year-old out on trail. And, amazingly, everyone has fun.

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Build Strong Family Bonds While Giving Back to Trails

May 09, 2017

On a recent rainy weekend, a group of WTA volunteers ranging in age from 9 to 60+ came together for a common goal: to give back to trails. We wanted to know what inspired them to spend a cold and wet Saturday digging in the dirt.

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Five Ways to Celebrate National Park Week with Your Family

Apr 09, 2017

National Park Week is April 15 - 23. Plan fun adventures with your family starting with these five suggestions.

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With WTA's Help, Youth Ambassadors Share Their Love for Trails

Mar 04, 2017

Through WTA's Youth Ambassador Program, young people who love to hike and volunteer gain valuable skills and share their love for trails

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10 Years of Youth Engagement

Apr 12, 2017

Thanks to our members and donors, over the past 10 years, WTA’s youth engagement has grown into a comprehensive program serving thousands of students. But that’s not all. It’s also fostering the next generation of environmental advocates.

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Advice From a Pro: Keep Your Kids (and Yourself) Comfortable on Trail

Feb 07, 2017

Käryn Gaffney, Branch Ambassador for the Seattle chapter of Hike It Baby, shares what sorts of tips or gear she packs when she hits the trail with her two-year-old.

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New Guidebook Series, Close to Home

Feb 02, 2017

A new set of guidebooks and a young son have given guidebook author Craig Romano a fresh perspective.

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Youth Ambassador Spotlight: Julianna Hoza

Feb 03, 2017

Learn how this Youth Ambassador has been making big waves in her local hiking community.

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Upcycle DIY: Plastic Bag to Stuff Sack

Dec 06, 2016

Try this fun project with your kids! Use cracker, cereal, or candy bags and some old shoelaces to create bags that are great for hiking excursions.

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Alumni Survey: Collecting a Decade of Memories from Youth Volunteer Vacations

Dec 19, 2016

To commemorate these last ten years, we are looking for volunteers who participated on a youth volunteer vacation from 2007-2016 to share their experience with us.

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Harvest Your Own Christmas Tree in the National Forest

Dec 07, 2017

Head to a National Forest this season to for your very own Christmas tree. Available to cut with a permit from now until December 24, harvesting Christmas trees is a unique way to experience your public lands.

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