Seattle area hiking in April
April 17, 2013 1:49 PM   Subscribe

What would be a great day hike this weekend near Seattle? We're looking for a hike that is accessible and glorious this time of year for a day date/outing.
posted by palegirl to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (10 answers total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
I had a lot of fun hiking up/through Monte Cristo this time of year as a day date type thing.
posted by emptythought at 2:14 PM on April 17, 2013

There are hundreds of possibilities. How long do you have to spend? How far are you willing to drive? How vigorous a climb are you up for? Do you like mountains, beaches, oceans, forests, lakes, scenic views of big cities?
posted by Mars Saxman at 2:16 PM on April 17, 2013

Really need some more details. Where are you? How far are you willing to go? What sort of difficulty?

There are so many possibilities!
posted by Tevin at 2:31 PM on April 17, 2013

Response by poster: We're really casual hikers, have books and maps but not sure what's snowed in right now and what's doable. We live in Capitol Hill, looking to get away from the city, can drive an hour or two. Hike 3-5 hours maybe? We're pretty open I think, basically wanting advice about the season. Like you said, there are so many options that recommendations would be helpful.
posted by palegirl at 2:53 PM on April 17, 2013

None of the access roads that get you very far into high country will be open this early, but if you have snowshoes you could head up to the passes (be very careful, weather has taken lives already this spring as you may well know). if you have a long day, they just opened the north cascades highway!
Paradise is open, so you could hike Mt Rainier (again snowshoes)
plenty of lowland rambling hikes, like ft ebey on Whidbey island too.
posted by OHenryPacey at 2:55 PM on April 17, 2013

I'll second OHenry's suggestion for Whidbey. I was on Whidbey Island in April a couple years ago and hiked/explored the Ebey's Landing area. The weather was perfect for me, at least, but of course you'll want to check the 'forecast.' It's one of the most beautiful spots I've visited in PNW and makes me all giddy just thinking about it.

The 'hike' is pleasant - it's rather flat, through an open field, opens up to a beautiful view of the ocean and then follows a ridge for a couple miles north. At the end of the trail there's a series of switchbacks that lead down to the beach. Besides the main trail, there are lots of little trails that lead into the woods. I stuck to the main trail that gave me the best ocean view but I was tempted to veer off a few times. Lot's of wildlife, too.

If you drive, only, it's two hours; if you hop on the ferry at Mukilteo it's probably half that.
posted by Tevin at 3:11 PM on April 17, 2013 [1 favorite]

Take the ferry and hike around one of the San Juan Islands.
Or, my favorite, Dungeness and do the inland sand island by the light house.
Try Hurricane Ridge.
Hike along the Cedar river if you don't want to drive very far.

Too many choices, too little time.

There's a reason people like living here from April thru September.
posted by ptm at 3:27 PM on April 17, 2013

Hike The Geek lists some good easy trails close to Seattle. As far as I know, all of these should be fine in any season. If you head higher into the mountains, check the official web sites for trail and road conditions (snow in the winter, mudslides or flooding in the rainy seasons).
posted by mbrubeck at 5:21 PM on April 17, 2013

Boulder River is supposed to be a good all year round trail. I've done it in Mid May and it is beautiful.

The Washington Trails Association website has sections for trail reports so you could maybe check on there to see if whatever trail you choose has any recent reports of snow.

I can also recommend the 60 Trails Within 60 Miles of Seattle book.
posted by HMSSM at 7:12 PM on April 17, 2013

Whidbey also has some other nice trails; Putney and Saratoga Woods, the woods alongside Greenbank Farms, and the Trillium Woods area to name a few. Plus lots of beaches!
posted by The otter lady at 9:25 PM on April 20, 2013

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