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Upcoming Hiker Events

Posted by Crystal Gartner at May 10, 2021 12:30 PM |
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Hiking can often be a solitary experience, but when you're looking to engage with the outdoor community, there is no shortage of opportunities in Washington.

Connect with WTA

Our website, will remain a place for you to find information about local green spaces, updates on trails and moments of joy and inspiration. We hope you can connect with each other and to us on our social channels. Read past trip reports or share your own with the community.

In Person Events    

Autumn Ambles
Leavenworth, WA
Fridays & Saturdays in September, 10 a.m.-12 noon
Thursdays in October (except 10/7), 10 a.m.-12 noon
Join the Wenatchee River Institute for a two-hour autumn amble with one of our knowledgeable naturalists. Walk with us through Waterfront Park as the air begins to cool and the leaves turn gold. You will learn about the natural and cultural history of Leavenworth with many scenic views along the way! What are plants and animals doing to prepare for winter? Can we find all 5 types of salmon that are spawning in the fall? Registration is required, choose your desired date. Ages 6-15 ticket: $5; ages 16+ ticket: $10.

More Saltese, Please! National Public Lands Day
Spokane Valley, WA
September 25, 1 p.m.-4 p.m. 
Inland Northwest Land Conservancy would like to invite you to visit the Saltese Uplands Conservation Area and the Saltese Flats restoration project. Choose from a variety of activities, from mountain biking, to bird watching, to family-friendly volunteer projects. Wrap up your afternoon of adventure with a status update on our efforts to raise funds for this conservation purchase and to learn about plans for the future of this important land. Register for an activity today! Free.

Seattle Center Sculpture Walk
Seattle, WA
October 12, all day
Seattle Center is pleased to collaborate with the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture to bring Temporary Art Installations to campus. Enjoy four Temporary Art Installations on Seattle Center grounds, now through end of 2021, by artists Fumi Amano, Nate Clark, Jovita Mercado and Jac Oliver Trautman. These works were developed through Seattle Office of Arts & Culture Art Interruptions program. Free.

Very Berry Tour of Beacon Food Forest
Seattle, WA
October 17, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. 
Have fun touring around Beacon Food Forest exploring 10 of its berry species. We’ll be spending a little time with each berry species, doing a little maintenance gardening for Blueberries and Raspberries, and taking home some cuttings and/or canes of some berry species to use in your own personal, or another community, garden. Tickets are $35 with some sliding scale available.

A Class on Chanterelles! 
Leavenworth, WA
October 23, 9 a.m.-2 p.m. 
The fall season is a fabulous time to forage for Chanterelle mushrooms! Offered by the Wenatchee River Institute, this class will start by learning the basics of mushroom identification and safety tips for foraging. Most of the class will be spent in the field foraging for chanterelles and observing other species. There is no guarantee chanterelles will be found, but you will learn what key habitat features to look for. Register in advance. $40 non-members, $30 members, limit of 13 participants. 

Fall Fungi Field Trip With Pacific Mycological Society
October 30, 8 a.m.-3 p.m. 
Leavenworth, WA
Fall mushroom season is here! Wenatchee River Institute and Puget Sound Mycological Society (PSMS) are coming together to host a fall fungi field trip. The day will begin at the Wenatchee River Institute with a meeting to set the scene and provide a safety briefing. PSMS guides will take groups of people out to different locations for fungi foraging and collection. There is no guarantee you'll find good edible mushrooms, but you will learn the basics and have an idea of the habitat to look for, based on the season. The guided trips will be out foraging for about 3 hours. Groups will return to WRI to have mushrooms identified. Register in advance. Tickets are FREE, but limited to 30.  

Virtual events      

Grizzly Grub: Bear Habitat in the North Cascades
September 23
As part of the Wildlife Speaker Series to deepen our knowledge and appreciation of the wildlife species native to our area, the Methow Valley Citizens Council is hosting this talk by Dr. Bill Gaines of the Washington Conservation Science Institute. The North Cascades hosts a rich diversity of plant life–a mixture of berries, roots and shrubs–that are prime food for grizzly bears. You'll learn about some of the characteristics that make the North Cascades a productive habitat to support a grizzly bear population. Registration required. Free.

Give More 24!
September 23
Give More 24! brings together our entire region for 24 hours of generosity. By giving at the same time, and boosting donations through match dollars and nonprofit prizes, we create one incredible impact. The hiking community can lead the way to trails that will last forever. Whether close-to-home or deep in the backcountry, building truly sustainable trails requires all of us to come together and reimagine what is possible. Support long-lasting trails by making a gift today!

Saving Us: A Climate Scientist's Case for Hope and Healing in a Divided World
September 30, 6-7 p.m.
While others offer doomsday scenarios and point fingers of blame, Dr. Katharine Hayhoe approaches this topic with optimism and inclusivity. She argues that climate action isn’t about being a certain type of person or voting a certain way. It’s about connecting the values we already have, to act for our future. Part of the Nature of Writing series, in partnership with the North Cascades Institute. 0-$5

A Wilderness Puzzle: The Creation of North Cascades National Park
October 6, 5:30-6:45 p.m. 
Join the North Cascades Institute and Lauren Danner as she unfolds the story of how this national park came to be. Register in advance. $15. 

Native Plants to Enjoy All Year
October 12, 7:00 p.m. 
Join Sarah Gage and the Central Puget Sound chapter of the Washington Native Plant Society to learn about common native plants that you can spot all year round. Zoom webinar. Register in advance. Free.

Diversity in the Outdoors: A Conversation With Chevon Powell
November 3, 5:30-6:45 p.m. 
While Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC) have always been out on the trail despite this history, we're now seeing a welcome increase in participation, as well as overlapping conversations about social justice and outdoor recreation. More people of diverse identities are getting out, having fun, and adding to the richness of outdoor culture. Discussions about diversity in the outdoors help to grow a diverse and just outdoor scene. Chevon is the founder of Golden Bricks Events (GBE) and Refuge Outdoor Festival—an annual outdoor recreation camping experience geared toward Black, Indigenous, People of Color. Chevon will be sharing her story of exploring natural and social landscapes, as well as facilitating a reflective conversation in small groups. Register in advance. $5. 

Homewaters: A Human and Natural History of Puget Sound 
November 4, 2021 7:00 p.m. 
David B. Williams will be speaking about Homewaters: A Human and Natural History of Puget Sound, which tells the long story of the Sound, tracing human history from the earliest records more than 12,500 years ago to present. In the book, he discusses Native people, the arrival of explorers and settlers, and how the various inhabitants adapted to place. He also weave in stories of the natural world, covering often overlooked species such as Olympia oysters, rockfish, geoduck, kelp, and herring, as well as the influence of salmon and orca on the Sound. Presented by the Central Puget Sound Chapter of the Washington Native Plant Society. Zoom webinar. Register in advance. Free.

Ongoing Activities

Walk With a Doc
Walk With a Doc is a global community where doctors go on short walks with patients and members of the public. Each walk kicks off with a short presentation on a health topic followed by a short walk through a local park. Currently these walks are virtual due to social distancing measures, but will return to in-person meet-ups as soon as it's safe to do so. Walks are held in Everett, Olympia, Yakima, Spokane and St. Helens Oregon. 

Personalized Outfitting with an REI Expert
Get expert advice from the comfort of your home with our virtual outfitters. Video chat with our team to get the next great piece of gear, advice for an upcoming adventure, or explore the possibilities of a new outdoor activity. Book a live appointment today and connect with our team right from your home. Appointments are available 7 days a week from 5:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. PST. Free. 

Self-guided Forest Bathing
The Washington Park Arboretum has several great resources for visitors to practice forest bathing, an approach to mindfully enjoying nature. Learn about the practice, find resources and share your experience with others. 

Volunteer as an Adventure Scientist
Help collect tree samples for a database that will be used to catch illegal timber harvests. Volunteer hikers collect leaves, seeds and wood samples and send them in to be tested, then the timber industry is able to check the wood that comes through their mills against this data to determine if it was harvested from an area where logging is permitted. 

Be a Citizen Archivist for the National Archive 
Add tags to photos from America's Scenic Byways to make this resource more searchable for the public. First you must register, then you can pick the type of archiving you want to do and get started. There are more opportunities here as well, like transcribing historical documents about the first U.S. roads and trails to be built in Alaska. 

Environmental Film Festival
Explore the collection of current and past festival films now available for streaming. The Environmental Film Festival in the Nation’s Capital (DCEFF) is the world’s premier showcase of environmentally themed films. 

Mapping Seattle's Historic Orchards 
Help identify historic fruit trees in your neighborhood that may be remnants of historic orchards. This project aims to identify and preserve these heirloom varieties still growing in Seattle. 

Living Snow Project
The Living Snow Project mobilizes volunteers to collect and submit samples of pink snow so researchers at Western Washington University can study the microbiome of creatures living in these environments. Anyone in the mountainous US can participate with a simple phone app and a sample kit that can be picked up or mailed to you. 

Story Time at the Miller Library
The Miller Library at UW's Botanic Garden presents monthly stories about gardens, plants and nature. Tune in anytime to watch a virtual reading of a new book each month. 

OTHER Local & Amazing hiking communities

We also keep a list of many other local meet up groups and networks. While you might not be able to connect in person, you might find their online community is someplace you'd like to spend some time.

Explore these accounts and podcasts

  • by land podcast - Hunter and backpacker Emory Wanger began By Land as a way to share his personal journey in the outdoors so others can learn from his time in the field, and to bridge gaps between outdoor communities.
  • Cascade Hiker Project podcast - inspiring you to get out on the trail. Interviews make the show feel like a radio channel dedicated to hikes and backpacks.
  • Dirtbag Diaries podcastClimb. Ski. Hike. Bike. Paddle. Run. Travel. Whatever your passion, we are all dirtbags. Outdoor writer Fitz Cahall and the Duct Tape Then Beer team present stories about the dreamers, athletes and wanderers.
  • For the Wild podcastan anthology of the Anthropocene; focused on land-based protection, co-liberation and intersectional storytelling rooted in a paradigm shift away from human supremacy, endless growth and consumerism.
  • Outdoorsy DivaTraveler, foodie, outdoor lover, & single mom featured in Huffpo Travel, BBC Earth Podcast, and listed as one of the top Black travel bloggers on the planet. 
  • Outside Voices - inspired by one idea: the outdoors belongs to all of us. We all have a relationship to nature, whether through hiking, gardening, sacred ceremony or gathering at the local park. We aim to celebrate and amplify those who don’t always see themselves reflected in the “Great Outdoors” narrative.
  • She Explores podcast - interviews, in-the-field recordings and listener submissions make up a tapestry of episodes covering themes such as solo hiking and camping; entrepreneurship; aging; diversity, equity and inclusion; conservation; motherhood; chronic illness, and feminism as they intersect with outdoor experiences.
  • The Joy Trip Project - James Edward Mills' ongoing search to discover how to lead a harmonious life in balance with the natural world and the rest of humanity. 
  • THE WILD podcast - explores how nature survives and thrives alongside (and often despite) humans. Taking listeners across the Pacific Northwest and around the world, host Chris Morgan explores wildlife and the complex web of ecosystems they inhabit. He also tells the stories of people working in and protecting the wild around us.
  • thewildpod on InstagramGet back to nature with surprising stories of wonder and resilience from the world of wildlife with ecologist @chrismorganwildlife

If you have a suggestion for the Hiker Events Calendar, please email the details and a link to Crystal Gartner at