Seattle, Washington, is a hikers heaven. From waterfalls to mountain tops, the very best hikes close to Seattle take you deep into mossy forests or up onto rocky peaks. Plus, you might be only some hours from three totally different Nationwide Parks: Mount Rainier, North Cascades, and Olympic. With the Puget Sound on one facet and mountains flanking the japanese skyline, there’s a hike for everybody round this lush PNW paradise.
Whether or not you reside within the space or are simply visiting, the hikes outlined on this information are all inside two hours of downtown Seattle (not accounting for site visitors).
On the lookout for the very best hikes close to Seattle? Our Seattle climbing information has you coated.
Necessary Reminder: Because it goes in all the locations we share, please follow good path etiquette and bear in mind to Go away No Hint. This implies packing out your entire rubbish (together with rest room paper), being respectful to others on busy trails, and following the established guidelines.
Seattle Hikes — Mapped
Finest Seattle Day Hikes
Lake Serene/Bridalveil Falls
- Distance: 7.5 miles
- Elevation Achieve: 2690 ft
- Issue: Difficult
Hike to Lake Serene for a difficult uphill hike with views out over the Skykomish valley. The path concludes at an alpine lake beneath the towering face of Mount Index. It’s price a dip within the cool, clear water after the sweaty hike up!
The hike to Lake Serene contains an offshoot path to Bridalveil Falls, among the finest waterfall hikes close to Seattle. Water tumbles down the slick granite cliff, and when you squint, you’ll be able to think about the water flowing right into a veil-like form.
The path begins on a road-grade gravel path that winds up by way of western purple cedars and Douglas firs. A few mile and a half in, you attain the turnoff to move as much as Bridalveil Falls. It’s solely a half-mile as much as the falls, however do that on the best way to the lake. You gained’t need to head again uphill on the best way again! After the facet path to the falls, the path turns right into a jumble of roots and boulders. Watch your step as you start heading up the switchbacks, up and up till you attain the lake. Stairs interspaced between sections of the path present a way of aid from the uneven floor. As with all Seattle day hikes, you should definitely pack a rain jacket in case the climate modifications.
Getting There: Head north on I-5 to Everett after which take Freeway 2 to Gold Bar. Flip proper on Mount Index Dr and take the gravel street as much as the trailhead. This parking zone fills up shortly on weekends, so be sure to reach early to safe parking. The Forest Service requires an NW Forest Go for parking.
- Distance: 5.2 miles
- Elevation Achieve: 2122 ft
- Issue: Difficult
The one time I’ve hiked the path to Mount Pilchuck was in the course of winter, with a number of ft of snow on the bottom. The timber bowed over with snow made the hike really feel straight out of a Dr. Suess world. Though hanging, I wouldn’t essentially advocate this as a winter hike, because the path passes underneath or by way of avalanche terrain, and different hazards abound throughout winter situations. However throughout the summer time, this is without doubt one of the greatest trails for mountain views within the Seattle space. The path leads you to a hearth lookout with 360-degree views, together with Mount Baker and Mount Rainier. Inbuilt 1921, the hearth lookout is one in all roughly 90 nonetheless standing in Washington at the moment.
The outstanding views and brief distance make Pilchuck a well-liked path. The path itself is steep and rocky, so it may not be nice for somebody with restricted mobility. Some rocky, scrambly sections result in the lookout, making for an incredible place to eat lunch. Or, this may very well be a straightforward in a single day possibility with the potential for both tenting within the lookout tower itself or on a close-by grassy bench.
Getting There: Head north on I-5 till Everett and head east on the Mountain Loop Freeway (WA-92). Take Forest Street 42 to the trailhead, however be sure to lookup situations as this street might be filled with potholes and difficult to drive at instances. The Forest Service requires an NW Forest Go for parking.
- Distance: 3.6 miles
- Elevation Achieve: 1145 ft
- Issue: Average
For a fast afternoon jaunt to get outdoors and transfer, Little Si is excessive on the checklist of straightforward Seattle day hikes. This brief hike proper outdoors of Seattle climbs by way of traditional PNW forests with views of Mount Si and the North Bend space. Recognized from the television present Twin Peaks, Mount Si rises prominently over the valley beneath and makes for one more nice hike if you need one thing longer and steeper than Little Si. Many Seattleites use these two uphill trails as coaching hikes or runs for bigger PNW goals.
The Little Si path winds its manner by way of the forest with choices to interrupt off and add on mileage or be part of up with the longer Mount Si path. To move to the summit of Little Si, proceed till you attain the steep uphill part that leads you to views over the valley. On clear days, you’ll be able to see Mount Washington and the summit of neighboring Mount Si. If you happen to full the Little Si hike and are prepared for a problem, attempt close by I90 climbing staples like Mailbox Peak or Rattlesnake Ledge.
Getting There: Head east out of Seattle on I-90 till you attain the city of North Bend. The trailhead parking sits simply north of the Center Fork of the Snoqualmie River. Bear in mind that this parking zone does replenish shortly as it is a standard hike. Be certain to have a Washington Uncover Go for parking.
Lighthouse Level and Lottie Loop Path
- Distance: ~2.5 miles
- Elevation Achieve: 350 ft
- Issue: Simple
Though I like the Cascade Mountains, you’ll be able to’t say you’ve hung out within the PNW with out additionally spending time by the ocean. Deception Go State Park is simply north of Seattle close to the small seaside city of Anacortes. The Lighthouse Level and Lottie Loop Path comprise choices for size or route because it contains two separate loops, each starting on the parking zone for Bowman Bay. You may additionally head north in direction of Rosario Seaside when you nonetheless need to hike extra.
The path follows the bay because it heads to Lighthouse Level, the place you’ll get expansive views of the enduring Deception Go bridge and Whidbey island. Then head again to the path and both again to the parking zone or add on the small loop round Lottie Level. Many seashores alongside the route make for good spots to cease and eat lunch or hang around.
Getting There: Head north out of Seattle on I-5 till you attain Burlington. Then head west on Freeway 20 towards Fidalgo Island and Anacortes however flip south to achieve Deception Go State Park. Park by Bowman Bay earlier than the bridge onto Whidbey Island. Parking within the State Park does require a Washington Uncover Go.
- Distance: 5 miles
- Elevation Achieve: 1482 ft
- Issue: Average
If you’re searching for Pacific Northwest lushness, full with waterfalls, ferns, towering hemlocks and cedars, and greenery galore, Wallace Falls is the hike for you. This Seattle hike follows the Woody Path up the Wallace River to 3 gorgeous waterfalls.
The path to the primary waterfall is fairly reasonable, with a lot of the elevation achieve coming in between the Center and Higher Falls. The Center Falls overlook options arguably the very best views with a birds-eye view of the falls and a panorama of the valley. Plenty of nooks and benches by the river present nice locations to take a break or eat lunch on the best way up or again.
Getting There: Head north on I-5 to Everett after which head east on Freeway 2 till you get to the small city of Gold Bar. There are indicators on the freeway to direct you in direction of Wallace Falls State Park, the place you park in the primary parking zone for the Woody Path. Parking within the State Park requires a Washington Uncover Go.
- Distance: 5 miles
- Elevation Achieve: 1034 ft
- Issue: Simple/Average
The hike to Heather Lake is a superb intro to alpine lake climbing close to Seattle. The brief distance doesn’t embody an excessive amount of elevation achieve however does present some stellar views. Heather Lake is without doubt one of the greatest Seattle hikes for individuals who need to do extra mountain climbing however don’t really feel prepared for a number of the tougher hikes within the space.
Positioned on the north facet of Mount Pilchuck, Heather Lake is the vacation spot, however the journey takes you thru forests and throughout marshes. The path winds up a number of switchbacks, in addition to an previous forest street. Among the switchbacks have eroded, revealing roots and rocks, making strolling difficult. If it has been lately raining (because it usually is), this space could also be slick, and little waterfalls may run down the path. You’ll want to learn our information on the way to keep dry whereas climbing within the rain if the forecast requires rain. On the prime of the switchbacks, the path evens out, and you’ll attain a fork that leads you in a loop across the lake.
Getting There: Just about the identical as for Mount Pilchuck, head north on I-5 till Everett and head east on the Mountain Loop Freeway (WA-92). Take Forest Street 42 to the Heather Lake trailhead signed on the left facet of the street. The Forest Service requires a NW Forest Go for parking.
What are your favourite Seattle day hikes? What’s in your Seattle climbing bucket checklist? Go away us a remark beneath!