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Trip Report Roundup: And the Oscar Goes to…

Posted by Linnea Johnson at Mar 10, 2023 08:39 AM |

The WTA Oscars are here! These seven award-worthy trip reports highlight hiking etiquette, demonstrate inclusiveness and inspire the trail community to get outside.

The Oscars are just around the corner on Sunday, March 12. Inspired by the iconic award ceremony, here are seven award-worthy trip reports from recent months.

Best Cinematography

The northern lights glow on the horizon. Above twinkles a blanket of stars. Below sits dramatic mountaintops shrouded in mist.
The northern lights at Artist Point. Photo by FrozenFoto1.

Trip reporter FrozenFoto1 took an overnight snowshoe at Artist Point in the North Cascades and included a sampling of their movie-worthy photography. The hearty hikers learned a lot about winter backpacking and were rewarded by incredible views of the northern lights, starry skies, Mount Baker and the North Cascades. Come for the aurora borealis pictures, stay for the snow camping tips. 

Best Nature Documentary

Three photos are stiched together. The top shows a huge flock of birds in a wetland area. The bottom left shoes some geese on a grassy field. The bottom right is a great blue heron standing in reeds.
Birds on the Wetland Wildlife Trail at Howard Miller Steelhead Park. Photo by Alpine Wanderer.

The award for Best Nature Documentary goes to Alpine Wanderer, who included stunning photos in their trip report on the Wetland Wildlife Trail at Howard Miller Steelhead Park in the Skagit Wildlife Area. These shots of wintering waterfowl, majestic bald eagles, and a wetland sunset complement a rich report with trail conditions, parking information and the scoop on where to get deep-dish pizza nearby. 

Best Ensemble Cast

Six friends and one dog stand on the bank of Slavin Pond.
Slavin Pond Loop with friends. Photo by TrailKat.

Spokane-area trip reporter TrailKat assembled a delightful ensemble cast of six friends and a pup for an evening hike at Slavin Pond Loop. “Catching a sunset in this flat open space is one of my favorites,” she said. We love to see friends get together for a hike! 

Best Adaptation

A grassy hillside, followed by a forest sits in the foreground. In the background are a series of islands in the Salish Sea.
Four Summit Loop. Photo by JonJonJon.

The award for Best Adaptation goes to a trip reporter who changed course in response to external conditions to ensure a safe, enjoyable hike. JonJonJon checked the forecast and waited until afternoon to start their hike on the Anacortes Community Forest LandsFour Summit Loop and adapted their route to stay warm on a frigid, windy day. 

Best Set Design

Two tents sit on a pass. One hiker is still in their sleeping bag, while another is petting their dog who stands outside. In the background are dramatic mountain peaks and Mount Rainier.
Old Snowy Mountain. Photo by smacgillivray.

The award for Best Set Design goes to trip reporter smacgillivray, who demonstrated first-rate campsite selection on their trip up Old Snowy Mountain via Elk Pass and Snowgrass Flat. They pitched their tents on a durable, impacted surface 200 feet away from water with spectacular views of the southern Cascades and Washington’s volcanoes. 

Best Short

Pine trees scatter the foreground while a river stretches across the photo and into the distance behind them.
Coyote Wall - The Labyrinth Loop. Photo by trailtravelers.

For the Best Short award, we looked for a trip report that concisely tells fellow hikers everything they need to know. At a mere 77 words, trailtravelers’ report prepares readers for a day at Coyote Wall - The Labyrinth Loop along the Columbia River — including an invaluable warning about ticks on trail and a pithy description of trail conditions. 

Best Lead

A harnessed French bulldog sits atop Little Si. Mount Si stands in the distance.
Frenchie at Little Si. Photo by shegoat.

The award for Best Lead goes to trip reporter shegoat’s adorable French bulldog, who hiked Little Si for their first mountain adventure. Shout out to shegoat for a brief but informative depiction of trail conditions AND for modeling excellent hiker pup etiquette.

These seven trip reporters were good actors on trail, provided insightful screenplays for fellow hikers, shared cinematic photography, and directed casts of two-and four-legged friends alike. 

Whether you’re writing your first or 500th trip report, you’re helping the entire trail community stay safe and have fun. We applaud you. 

Interested in getting a real award for your trip reports? WTA staff hand pick outstanding trip reporters who consistently model exemplary hiking etiquette, demonstrate inclusiveness, encourage fellow hikers and provide helpful information on trail and road conditions. Outstanding trip reporters display a unique badge on their profile and reports. To get started, sign up for a MyBackpack account.