Unlock HiiKER PRO+




What to expect

Washington has 3800 trails including medium, easy, difficult, and extra difficult trails. The trail with the highest elevation climb is the Jetty Island Park Loop and the one with the least climb is the Steamboat Prow and Columbia Crest via Glacier Basin Trail. The longest trail is Pacific Northwest Trail at 2010 km. To complete this hike you should budget at least 120 days. For a shorter adventure, you can try the Long Lake Dam Overlook a t 186 m. This could be done in as little as 1 days. Trails with the best offering of hostels include Wawawai County Park Loop, Arboretum Waterfront Trail, Clear Creek Loop Trail - Northwest Bucklin Hill Road, Queets River Trail, and Lake Dorothy via Snoqualmie Lake Trail.

Guide to hiking in Washington

Be prepared for hiking in Washington with the HiiKER app

FAQs about hiking in Washington

What is the climate like for hiking in Washington?

In Washington, spring brings pleasant temperatures for hiking, though trails can be wet. Come summer, east Washington can be hot while west remains moderate. Fall brings stunning colors, cool temperatures, and drier trails. Winter is challenging with snowy conditions. Check Washington Trails Association for seasonal hiking suggestions.

Do I need a permit to hike in Washington?

In Washington, some hiking areas require permits. Check with specific land management agencies like National Park Service or US Forest Service for requirements. Wilderness permits can often be obtained at trailheads or ranger stations. The provides comprehensive permit information.

Is wild camping allowed in Washington?

Wild camping, or dispersed camping, is permitted in certain areas of Washington, often requiring permits. Be sure to follow Leave No Trace principles and restrictions regarding fire safety, waste disposal, and distance from water bodies. Visit the US Forest Service for details.

Are there mountain rescue services in Washington?

In Washington, dial 911 for mountain emergencies, they'll alert the appropriate services. This often involves volunteer organizations like Seattle Mountain Rescue. Before hiking, ensure you have adequate insurance as rescues can be costly. More information at the Seattle Mountain Rescue website.

Are there dangerous plants in Washington?

Washington's diverse flora is impressive for hikers. Expect western hemlock, Douglas fir, and salal in coastal regions. The alpine areas have subalpine fir, heather, and lupine. Forests transition into sagebrush in the arid eastern region. For detailed knowledge, refer to Washington Native Plant Society.

What wildlife should I be aware of when hiking in Washington?

From coastal to alpine environments, Washington's diverse fauna presents black bears, cougars, deer, and unique birds like bald eagles. Along trails, watch for insects like mosquitoes and ticks. Safe wildlife practices are essential, refer to the Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife.