Preparing for Winter Hiking
After seeing a person snowboarding on the cover of Wednesday's Seattle Times, I can no longer deny that winter is right around the corner. The days are growing shorter, the mornings are colder and the trees are losing their leaves.
What's a hiker to do?
Keep hiking, for one. Or switch to snowshoes. There are many choices for great year-round snow-free hikes, and a whole new world opens up if your head out into the snow.
Here are three ways to find excellent destinations for November (or any particular month) on WTA's website:
- Search Trip Reports - See where other hikers typically trek in November. If you click on "Show Advanced Search Options" you can search by month or by specific date range.
- Browse WTA's Hikes of the Week - Last year's selections included Tunnel Creek in the Olympics, Boulder River near Darrington and Shi Shi Beach on the coast.
- Choose from our Seasonal Destinations - These are past features that provide ideas for every season, like River Hikes in the Olympics or Snowshoeing Mt. Rainier.
Hiking and snowshoeing in the fall and winter requires a little more planning and vigilance, however. Check out our Winter Safety Tips for information about snow safety and what additional items to include in your backpack.
You'll also want to know a bit more about the weather and road conditions. WSDOT has up-to-date mountain pass conditions, including cameras on five well-traveled routes.
The Northwest Avalanche Center's website provides not only detailed avalanche forecasts but also comprehensive weather data and forecasts for the mountains. For more lowland weather information, try the information from the National Weather Service.
So get outside and play this winter! And when you're done, please write a Trip Report to tell us about your adventure.