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Signpost Blog

"This little newsletter has been an experiment so far, testing a hunch I've had that such a means of communication among walkers is needed." — Signpost magazine, 1966.

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Hiker Headlines: Goodbye 2020, Winter Wonders, the Other Washington

Dec 30, 2020

It’s December 30. As the year ends, we look back on all the great work the WTA community accomplished in 2020. Getting outside during the winter is great for mental health, plus fee-free days make it easy to explore new state parks. Mount Rainier announced changes to its winter activities. And congressmembers in Washington D.C. asked for funding for local parks. Here’s some news you may have missed while out on trail this week.

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Bringing Nature Closer to Home in Southwest Washington

Dec 30, 2020

WTA has been helping to make Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge into an easily accessible bit of nature. Thanks to a new path that offers a safe walking route, hikers now have two different ways to walk to the refuge from downtown Ridgefield. And those two routes can even be combined to create a 5-mile loop.

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2020 Northwest Exposure Photo Contest Winners

Dec 29, 2020

See all 16 of the winning photos in this year's photo contest!

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What Will You Carry Into 2021?

Dec 28, 2020

2020 was a challenging year, but one that brought new hobbies, habits and self-reflection.

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Rebooting Popular Trails and the Pacific Crest Trail in the Central Cascades

Dec 22, 2020

WTA crews worked all summer to restore and maintain trails across the state. Part of that work included improving trails in the Cle Elum Ranger District of the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest.

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Snow Lake Trail: Helping an Iconic Trail Step Up Sustainability

Dec 22, 2020

How WTA trail crews, volunteers and member support are helping one of Washington's most popular and iconic trails carry increased boot traffic while protecting the beauty that makes it so special.

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Students at Seattle Nativity School Build Connections to Nature and Each Other on Trail

Dec 17, 2020

Seattle Nativity School hosts annual hiking trips with students across every grade, along with a summer backpacking trip for alumni. Two former students, Layla an Christian, reflect on these outdoor experiences and what memories have really stuck with them.

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Hiker Headlines: Awards, Recreation Economy, Palouse Trail Planning, New Map

Dec 17, 2020

It's December 17. We're excited to share that our Advocacy Director, Andrea Imler has received the Jim Ellis Spirit Award for her work. A recent study shows just how much Washington recreationists contribute to the economy. An important connection along the Palouse to Cascades Trail is getting a glow-up. There's an opportunity to share your input on a new trail plan in the Palouse region. And a new online map will help hikers identify land managers on our local public lands. Here’s some news you might have missed while out on trail this week.

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Hiking Every Day for a Month: 2 Young Hike-a-Thoners Tell Their Story

Dec 15, 2020

This year, two young hikers set an ambitious goal. For the month of August, as part of their Hike-a- Thon participation, Lu and Chloe, both 10, set a goal to hike on a trail every day.

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WTA Advocacy Director Andrea Imler Receives Prestigious Jim Ellis Spirit Award

Dec 11, 2020

WTA’s Advocacy Director, Andrea Imler, was awarded with the Jim Ellis Spirit Award for her work in developing the Recreate Responsibly Coalition (RRC) in response to the pandemic on Wednesday, Dec. 9, at the 2020 Mountains to Sound Greenway Trust annual dinner.

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Your Favorite Volunteer Memories of 2020

Dec 11, 2020

You and other volunteers have accomplished a lot in 2020. Here are some of your favorite memories.

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Take a Hike and Help the Economy

Dec 10, 2020

Outdoor recreation is a huge contributor to our state's economy. In 2019, $5 billion was spent on hiking alone. And overall outdoor recreation spending is $26.5 billion. In other words — hiking is good for you, and it's good for our state.

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How to Uncover 'New to You' Hikes on WTA this Winter

Dec 10, 2020

Hint: it's all in the filters.

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Hiker Headlines: Volunteers Rock, Winter Trails, Merging Planets, Boost for Everest

Dec 10, 2020

It’s December 10. Thank you to all the volunteers who supported WTA through an especially challenging year. Summer trails don’t always translate into safe winter trails. Jupiter and Saturn will appear closer than they have since 1226. And, Mount Everest just got a little taller. Here’s some news you might have missed while out on trail this week.

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Small But Mighty: Backcountry Crews Make Big Strides on Lost Trails

Dec 09, 2020

Our pint-size backcountry crews were able to get a lot of work done — donating over 6,000 hours of work to lost trails across the state! We want to share a few highlights from our 2020 season to give you a peek at everything these crews accomplished.

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Trail Volunteers: Thank You from a Blue Hat

Dec 07, 2020

2020 was hard, but volunteers have shown up for trails in a big way.

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Be Kind to Your Feet: Our Favorite Socks

Dec 04, 2020

For hikers, there is no more important tool than your feet. You want to take care of them so they can carry you for endless miles. Here are a variety of socks that our staff and gear testing team recommend.

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Hiker Headlines: Spruce Railroad Trail, Winter Recreation, Christmas Tree Permits, Land Transfers

Dec 03, 2020

It’s December 3. The Spruce Railroad Trail has reopened. A permit is required to park at the many Sno-Parks around the state. We explain the rules and regulations around Christmas tree permits. The Department of Natural Resources announced two land transfers. And, Baker Lake Dam Road will be closed for two full days. Here’s some news you may have missed while out on trail this week.

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Mica Peak Traverse: Completing A New Trail Near Spokane

Nov 25, 2020

This fall, WTA volunteers and partners celebrated another win for trails in the Spokane-area, this time in the form of a trail connecting two of the region’s largest swaths of public land. The California Creek Trail, completed in mid-October, now officially connects Liberty Lake Regional Park and Mica Peak Conservation Area.

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Hiker Headlines: Thankful for the Outdoors, Funding for Projects, Virtual Events

Nov 25, 2020

It’s November 25. Consider 6 outdoor activities to celebrate the season in addition to #OptOutside, which is this Friday. The Forest Service is accepting public comment on which projects should be funded. In-person events put on by the Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest will go virtual this winter. And, a turkey visits a national park. Here’s some news you may have missed while out on trail this week.

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6 Ideas for Making New Outdoor Holiday Traditions

Nov 24, 2020

Spending the holidays outdoors is an annual tradition for a number of WTA trip reporters. And this year, we may want to take a page out of their playbooks.

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