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Best Hiking Trails in Washington – USA

Overview

Washington, a US state in the Pacific Northwest, is one of the most beautiful states for mountain hiking.  Olympic National Park and the Cascade Mountains are among the many gorgeous landscapes to hike.  Other areas include: Mount Rainer National Park, Alpine Lakes Wilderness, Mt Baker – Snoqualmie National Forest, Mt St. Helens, Mt Adams, and Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest. The best months to hike in Washington are June to September. Read on for more information on where and when to hike in Washington

Capital: Seattle

When To Hike in Washington – USA?

June – September: Driest, although quite rainy particularly in the western part of the state.  May and October could be fine for lower altitude areas.
May; October
November – April: Cold, rain/snow

Climate: Marine climate in the western part of the state (west of the Cascades) – wet and cool throughout the year. In the eastern part of the state, continental climate, with warm/hot summers and cold, snowy winters.  Afternoon thunderstorms in eastern Washington.  

 

NWS Forecast Office Seattle/Tacoma, WA

Accessibility of Hiking

Easy: Well-marked trails, good maps, guidebooks and lots of resources to help with hiking trip planning.

Transportation required: Car

Where to stay in Washington for hiking:

  • North Bend
  • Port Angeles
  • Marblemount
  • Winthrop
  • Seattle

Top Places to Hike in Washington – USA

There are many areas to hike here: on the Olympic Peninsula, in Olympic National Park, which is beautiful and popular; in the Cascade Mountains which contains all the highest peaks in the state; in the eastern part of the state where various ranges (Selkirk, Columbia) offer plenty of hiking and around Seattle and in Puget Sound. Highest Mountain: Mount Rainier (4392 m) in Cascade range.

Filter out hiking places of Washington – USA by month

Click on the red map pointers to see more info.

Colville National Forest

Chuckanut Mountains

  • Puget Sound & Islands 
  • Larrabee State Park
  • Samish Lake Park

Around Seattle

Gifford Pinchot National Forest

Mt Adams Wilderness

Mount Rainier National Park

Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest

Mt Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest

North Cascades National Park

Olympic Mountains

Washington – USA's Long Distance Trails

Washington – USA's Walking & Hiking Resources

Washington Hiking Books: Lots of books, small sample below

  • Hiking Washington: A Guide to the State’s Greatest Hiking Adventures, 2nd Edition, A Falcon Guide, by Oliver Lazenby, 2020, Falcon Guides
  • Day Hikes in Washington State: 90 Favourite Trails, Loops, and Summit Scrambles, by Don J. Scarmuzzi, 2021, West Margin Press
  • Moon Washington Hiking: Best Hikes Plus Beer, Bites, and Campgrounds Nearby, by Craig Hill, 2021, Avalon Publishing
  • 100 Classic Hikes WA 3E: Olympic Peninsula / South Cascades / Mount Rainier / Alpine Lakes / Central Cascades / North Cascades / San Juans / Eastern Washington, by Craig Romano, 2016, Mountaineers Books
  • Day Hiking Central Cascades, by Craig Romano, 2023, Mountaineers Books
  • Day Hiking Eastern Washington, by Rich Landers & Craig Romano, 2013, Mountaineers Books
  • Day Hiking Olympic Peninsula, by Craig Romano, 2007, Mountaineers Books
  • Day Hiking Mount St. Helens, by Craig Romano, Aaron Theisen, 2015, Mountaineers Books
  • Hiking Trails of the Pacific Northwest
  • Northern California, Oregon, Washington, Southwestern British Columbia, by Craig Romano, William L. Sullivan, 2020, Rizzoli 
  • Hiking the Pacific Crest Trail: Washington: Section Hiking from the Columbia River to Manning Park, by Tami Asars, 2016, Mountaineers Books 

 

Washington Hiking Associations:

 

Best Hiking Trails in Washington:

There are so many fantastic hikes in Washington, it is impossible to choose just a few, but here is a small sampling. You can find more details on hiking these trails from hiking guidebooks, official park websites, trail maps/apps, other websites, and tourist offices:

  • Skyline Trail Loop – Mount Rainier National Park
  • Blue Lake – North Cascades
  • Pacific Crest Trail
  • Gothic Basin – North Cascades
  • Mount Storm King – Olympic National Park
  • Rattlesnake Ledge – Rattlesnake Mountain Scenic Area
  • Mount Angeles – Olympic National Park
  • Snow Lake – Alpine Lakes Wilderness
  • Mount Si – Mount Si Natural Resources Conservation Area
  • Tolmie Peak – Mount Rainier National Park
  • Colchuk Lake – Alpine Lakes Wilderness
  • Lake 22 – Cascades

Easy Hiking Trails in Washington:

  • Cape Flattery –
  • Hurricane Hill – Olympic National Park

 

Washington Hiking Websites:

 

Washington Weather Website:

 

Washington Official Tourism Site:  

 

Washington Hiking Apps: 

 

Washington Hiking Maps: 

What Else To Do

Other Important Points