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States boost REI's Black Friday 'OptOutside' plan

Exactly one month ago, outdoor retailer REI announced its campaign to get its employees and customers outside for the day. And a number of states jumped on board.All 143 REI stores are closed for the day, though its 12,000 employees are still being paid, according to the...

Date: 11/27/2015 | Business Wire

How and where to get a Christmas tree permit

Permits are now available to cut your own Christmas tree on Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest land.For the first time this year, kids in the fourth grade can get a free permit. The free permits are part of the Every Kid in a Park program, an effort to encourage kids and...

Date: 11/27/2015 | Explore NW

Record-setting speed

Edmonds hiker trained for epic hike by going off trail in Cascades

Date: 11/25/2015 | Explore NW

Huge trees hide in secret grove near Columbia River Gorge

WILLARD — To find the largest waterfalls in the Columbia River Gorge, all that's required is a drive out Interstate 84 to the many viewpoints and trailheads east of Portland.To find the largest trees in the Gorge, however, you're in for a lot more work.In...

Date: 11/22/2015 | Life

Rock rolls to new home

Ecstatic Edmonds homeowner claims glacial erratic

Date: 11/21/2015 | Local News

Tips to stay safe while playing outside in winter

Winter is clearly here. After the recent storms, it seems like a good time to check in with some safety basics. Don't let winter keep you indoors, but before you go out to play, make sure you're prepared to do it safely.Itinerary

Date: 11/20/2015 | Explore NW

Storm damaged many national forest trails and roads

Last week's storm with heavy rain, strong wind and snow caused widespread damage to roads and trails throughout Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest, rangers say.U.S. 2 is closed at Skykomish due to erosion under a bridge. That blocks access to some trails, including...

Date: 11/20/2015 | Explore NW

Author of Pacific coast guide book to speak Saturday

Author Greg Johnston will visit the Mountain Loop Books and Coffee shop from noon to 2 p.m. Nov. 21 to talk about his new book, "Washington's Pacific Coast: A Guide to Hiking, Camping, Fishing and other Adventures."

Date: 11/18/2015 | Explore NW

How to be prepared for winter travel in the forest

The Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest sent out a press release today reminding people to be prepared for severe weather.

Date: 11/17/2015 | Explore NW

Be sure your mushroom harvest isn't poisonous

The annual fall mushroom picking season has begun and the Washington Poison Center is warning people to carefully check wild fungi before eating them.So far this year, the state's poison center in Seattle has received 16 calls from...

Date: 11/16/2015 | Local News

Sharing Wheels needs help to get bikes to kids in need

Sharing Wheels is looking for donations of single-speed children’s bikes in good condition. The bikes will be refurbished and donated to Christmas House for kids in need.

Date: 11/15/2015 | Explore NW

Watch a storm

Settle in, cozy and warm, inside a Cascade fire lookout

Date: 11/15/2015 | Life

Help Mount Rainier National Park shape future of its wilderness

Mount Rainier National Park is working on a Wilderness Stewardship Plan to guide the use and preservation of wilderness in the park.

Date: 11/13/2015 | Explore NW

Learn about local mushrooms, where to find them

Kate Ambrus, a habitat steward, will discuss local mushrooms and good mushrooming areas around Camano Island and the Cascades at 7 p.m. Nov. 18 at the Camano Multipurpose Center, 141 N East Camano Drive.

Date: 11/11/2015 | Explore NW

Walking on water

Boardwalk at North Creek Park refurbished

Date: 11/05/2015 | Local News

Snow is falling

Update on Stevens Pass, other areas in the Cascades

Date: 11/03/2015 | Explore NW

Tke Sky's the limit

Officials tout potential of Sky to Sound water trail project

Date: 11/03/2015 | Local News

Upcoming outdoor events

Winter classes: See what classes are coming up through the Everett branch of The Mountaineers at 7 p.m. Nov. 4 at the Drewel Building, 3000 Rockefeller, Everett. Representatives from the alpine scrambling, avalanche, back-country skiing, climbing, cross-country skiing,...

Date: 10/30/2015 | Explore NW

He's quickest on the draw

‘Tank’ Dorman, 11, recently won a Fastest Gun Alive championship

Date: 10/30/2015 | Julie Muhlstein

Rower finds his passion in adventure and education

I got a chance to talk recently with Jordan Hanssen of Oar Northwest, a nonprofit devoted to adventure and education. He is the author of "Rowing into the Son" and, with three teammates, is a record-holder for the fastest row across the Atlantic Ocean. Hanssen will speak...

Date: 10/28/2015 | Explore NW

Volunteers, money sought to maintain Heybrook Lookout

INDEX — Not even scenic mountain lookouts are safe from the greedy hands of copper-wire thieves.The Heybrook Lookout, a hiking destination near Index, has been without a lightning-protection system since...

Date: 10/27/2015 | Local News

The best time

Mountain biking in Central Oregon is perfect in fall

Date: 10/25/2015 | Life

More options for fun

Stevens Pass resort to replace 2 chair lifts and add trails, skill parks

Date: 10/24/2015 | Local News

Quintessential NW stroll

Recently expanded Guemes Channel Trail a great fall walk

Date: 10/24/2015 | Life

N. Cascades open but smoky scent lingers

NEWHALEM — On a recent visit, my first sniff when I opened the car door at the North Cascades National Park Visitor Center on the edge of Newhalem told the story: Did you ever put your nose really close to a cold, dead campfire the morning after a wienie roast?

Date: 10/18/2015 | Life

Wander in a wetland

Boardwalk will offer intimate view of fascinating ecosystem

Date: 10/18/2015 | Life

Upcoming outdoor events in Snohomish County and nearby

See what Mountaineers have to offer: Learn about The Mountaineers courses, activities, youth programs and meet members of the club, 6:30 p.m. Oct. 19 at the Seattle Program Center, 7700 Sand Point Way NE, Seattle; Bees:...

Date: 10/18/2015 | Explore NW

Hang out in style in this hammock-tent hybrid

Sometimes, in the outdoors, you just want to hang out.

Date: 10/11/2015 | Life

On Terschelling, the beach stars, but the island directs

It was nearing 10:30 at night on Terschelling, but still not dark as my wife and I cycled through rippling sand dunes, their colors gradually muted by the fading light. Wild rabbits, a frequent sight on this largely undeveloped island in the Wadden Sea, hopped here and there, sometimes darting...

Date: 10/10/2015 | Life

A perfect fall day

Fast bikes, disc golf and bear tracks at Stevens Pass

Date: 10/08/2015 | Explore NW

The passage of time

How photographer created gorgeous image of Alpine Lakes

Date: 10/07/2015 | Explore NW

Best warm soups for a chilly walk in the woods

At the trailhead, while laces are tightened and day packs filled, the incense-laden fragrance of the land I love overtakes my senses. Those pesky urban woes, so imperative only hours ago, are no match for the grand old firs and sparkling alpine meadows along the Old McKenzie Highway.

Date: 10/07/2015 | Life

How to help rescuers see you if you're lost at night

The Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office Helicopter Rescue Team shared a video demonstrating ways to help rescuers find you if you're lost in the backcountry at night.

Date: 10/05/2015 | Explore NW

Paths to reflection: From sea to sea across Scotland, on foot

Two ridges of heather and grass rose up on either side of a narrow lake, like weathered hands scooping a drink of water. The blue sky was furrowed with clouds as bright as the patches of snow on the mountains in the distance. A gravel beach, wide enough for a few tents, etched a parenthesis in the...

Date: 10/03/2015 | Life

87 wild miles

Pacific Crest Trail in county is rugged and rewarding

Date: 09/27/2015 | Local News

Trip on the PCT is life changing for creator of popular podcast

When Daniel "Ratatouille" Hepokoski decided to hike the Pacific Crest Trail, his family and friends wanted him to keep a blog about the trip.

Date: 09/27/2015 | Explore NW

State parks, national parks, forest service sites will be free on Saturday

Saturday is National Public Lands Day. Entrance will be free to state parks and national parks and parking passes won't be required at Forest Service trailheads. 

Date: 09/23/2015 | Explore NW

Travelers from North Carolina thankful for return of bike stolen in Mill Creek

MILL CREEK — A police officer here spotted a stolen bicycle and made sure it was returned to a couple who is traveling across the country.

Date: 09/23/2015 | Local News

Injured hiker, 17, flown to safety from Glacier Peak area

DARRINGTON — A young hiker was flown Monday evening to an Everett hospital after she fell while traveling near the icy flanks of Glacier Peak.

Date: 09/22/2015 | Local News

A lone ranger

He’s on patrol in the Spada Lake watershed

Date: 09/20/2015 | Local News

Tech workers are turning to the Japanese practice of ‘forest bathing’ to unplug

SEATTLE — Before they were to find a “sit spot” in the forest, resisting the urge to check their phones and just pay attention to the nature around them, before they played games under soaring western red cedars like “blindfolded ninja” to sharpen their senses, a group of stressed-out workers who...

Date: 09/20/2015 | Life

Try your best shot in Washington Trails Association photo contest

After all is said and done, when talk about depth-of-field, shutter speeds, backlighting and filters is over, capturing memorable outdoors images usually comes down to less-technical issues: being in the right place at the right time (sometimes by design), and having enough of an...

Date: 09/20/2015 | Life

Rare albatross dies despite rehab efforts

LYNNWOOD — A short-tailed albatross that died while undergoing rehabilitation here is being used to further research on the rare species. Three fishermen rescued the large seabird last month in Neah Bay on the northwest coast of Washington.

Date: 09/19/2015 | Local News

Golden opportunity

Find nature, history in lower Skykomish River Valley

Date: 09/19/2015 | Life

Dance, dine and help underserved kids get outside

Outdoor Youth Connections, a group that helps underserved youth get outdoors, has a fundraising gala at 6 p.m. Sept. 25 at the Edmonds Yacht Club.There will be dinner, drinks and dancing with a live band. There will also be a raffle and a live and silent auction.

Date: 09/17/2015 | Explore NW

A day on the trail with a wilderness ranger

BEND, Ore. — When Drew Peterson tells people he works as a U.S. Forest Service wilderness ranger, they may assume his job is defined by solitude.But that is not always the case: On a busy summer day, a wilderness ranger may stop to talk with as many as 300 people, like...

Date: 09/17/2015 | Northwest

Trails less traveled

N. Fork Skykomish offers stunning hikes and backpacks

Date: 09/06/2015 | Explore NW

Have vegetable oil, will travel

Couple exploring country after creating fully sustainable vehicles

Date: 09/05/2015 | Local News

Gala raises money to help youth get outdoors

Outdoor Youth Connections, a group that helps underserved youth get outdoors, has a fundraising gala at 6 p.m. Sept. 25 at the Edmonds Yacht Club.

Date: 08/31/2015 | Explore NW

Year-round skiing

Why backcountry skiers go the distance, even in a dry summer

Date: 08/30/2015 | Explore NW

3-hour course helps you take better nature photos

Learn how to take better nature photos with photographer Andy Porter. The course will cover how to make the best use of your camera, manual operation, composition, depth of field, focus and more. The course is from 6 to 9 p.m. on Sept. 16 at the Marysville Community Center, 514 Delta...

Date: 08/29/2015 | Explore NW

Hike then swim

Boardman Lake is a short, easy trail to a refreshing little lake

Date: 08/27/2015 | Explore NW

Dreaming of RVs — from my blow-up air mattress

Every time a recreational vehicle passes me on the highway I dream about purchasing a motor home. Unfortunately, my husband doesn’t share my vision.“Do you imagine yourself parking this imaginary RV?” he asks me.

Date: 08/23/2015 | I Brake for Moms

Summer of science

Kids study and learn at Everett Parks camp

Date: 08/16/2015 | Explore NW

Author studies avian behavior

Talking with author Laura Erickson (“Into the Nest”) is like opening the door to the Avian Anecdote Room because she values watching more than just identifying.

Date: 08/16/2015 | Life

Head to the hills

There's still time for summer days in the upper Sky Valley

Date: 08/15/2015 | Life

Pink salmon running hot in local waters

The humpy run in local waters is in full bloom just when it should be (the rule of thumb is mid-August), and if you can't boat a fish or two over the next couple of weeks, you have some serious piscatorial problems."The pink salmon action is about as hot and heavy as...

Date: 08/13/2015 | Sports

Hike, fish, relax

Rainy Lake is high in the mountains yet easy to get to

Date: 08/09/2015 | Life

More tips for wheelchair-friendly hikes and a new book to savor

Two phone calls last Sunday reminded me of the pros and cons of offering a list of destination options, in this case my suggestions for accessible hikes. One reader pointed out that not everyone in a certain age...

Date: 08/09/2015 | Life

Working to be top dog

Sheepdog trials are under way this weekend in Arlington

Date: 08/08/2015 | Local News

Army extends comment period for helicopter-training plan in Cascades

The U.S. Army has extended the public comment period on a plan to conduct off-base mountain training over the North Cascades and southwest Washington for helicopter pilots to practice flyovers and...

Date: 08/07/2015 | Explore NW

Pink salmon run enjoys solid opening

Although the peak of the pink salmon season is still a week or two away, success rates were good enough over the weekend and early this week to prompt local anglers to get after ‘em, flat out. The humpies are here, in all the usual places, and it's time to start nailing your share...

Date: 08/06/2015 | Sports

Commemorate the capture of wild orcas 45 years ago

Forty-five years ago, orcas were herded into Penn Cove. The young orcas were captured in nets and taken to theme parks around the world.

Date: 08/04/2015 | Explore NW

Pacific Crest Trail closed near Suiattle River Trail

The Pacific Crest Trail is closed from Suiattle Pass north to High Bridge due to a fire that has burned 25 square miles near Lake Chelan.

Date: 08/03/2015 | Explore NW

See the underwater world of trout

The classic film "The Way of The Trout" will be shown at 10 a.m. Aug. 11 and 4 p.m. Aug. 13 at the Northwest Stream Center, 600 128th St. SE, Everett.

Date: 08/03/2015 | Explore NW

Nature is at the root of new preschool in Monroe

MONROE — At a new preschool here, kids will be listening to Mozart in a barn, collecting eggs from a chicken coup, feeding farm animals and tending a garden.Teacher Korista Minney is putting an outdoorsy spin on early-childhood education with a program that combines...

Date: 08/03/2015 | Local News

Worst wildfire weather of season for this weekend

Fire danger is extremely high right now. If you're going to be going outside, please be extremely careful to avoid sparking a wildfire. If a fire does get started right now, it has the potential to get immense very quickly.

Date: 07/31/2015 | Explore NW

Several options at ice caves, none of them good

How do we prevent tragedies at the Big Four Ice Caves?

Date: 07/31/2015 | Web Monkey

A bill for parks and much more

The odds that Congress will reauthorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund before it is scheduled to expire Sept. 30 improved...

Date: 07/28/2015 | Editorials

Adapting to limited mobility takes creativity for outdoor enthusiasts

When I was young, I ran faster than my parents (or so I thought), walked more quickly than my grandmother, climbed trees and left my aunt on the ground, and was oblivious to anyone with a cane, walker or wheelchair.Decades of hiking, kayaking, canoeing, bicycling,...

Date: 07/26/2015 | Life

Trail cams, GPS a big boost for wildlife research

A remote trail-cam photo is worth a thousand words about the wildlife we don’t see while recreating in the great outdoors.A group of female hikers triggered a motion-activated sensor of a camera put out in Pend Oreille County by wildlife biologists.

Date: 07/26/2015 | Life

Creekside calm

Buck Creek Campground is open again and it’s delightful

Date: 07/26/2015 | Explore NW

Yellowstone National Park: Jump into chilling beauty

I used to think that Yellowstone was more bizarre than beautiful.Not anymore.America's first national park offers a landscape of extremes: spewing geysers, bubbling mud pots, hot springs, cold rivers, violent waterfalls, languid lakes, lush valleys, a rocky...

Date: 07/25/2015 | Life

Section of Pacific Crest Trail closed due to fire in Glacier Peak Wilderness

A section of the Pacific Crest Trail in the Glacier Peak Wilderness will close Saturday due to the Blakenship fire, which is burning near Agnes Creek.

Date: 07/24/2015 | Explore NW

Gaining an even greater appreciation for the sport of polo

LA CONNER — The polo riders at the La Conner Polo Club make it look easy.It's really, really not. I mean, I knew it wouldn't be easy. In polo, you must stay astride a powerful animal with a mind of its own, while holding reins in one hand, a mallet in the...

Date: 07/23/2015 | Sports

Polo in the Northwest

La Conner Polo Club plays host to yearly Governor's Cup

Date: 07/23/2015 | Sports

Camping gourmet

How to make easy campfire sandwiches

Date: 07/22/2015 | Life

Your best shot

Some of our favorite outdoor photos from readers

Date: 07/21/2015 | Explore NW

A perfect picnic

Take an outing to a whole new level

Date: 07/19/2015 | Life

Adventure & leadership

Students learn outdoor skills, love of nature in N. Cascades

Date: 07/19/2015 | Explore NW

Mighty Zion National Park envelops visitors in natural wonder

ZION NATIONAL PARK, Utah — This is a spiritual place. A glorious place. A place of serene ocher mountains and leaning narrow canyons.

Date: 07/18/2015 | Life

Darrington day trip

Things to do in the sleepy logging town

Date: 07/17/2015 | Life

Upcoming outdoor events

Fisheries: The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is offering public workshop as part of its effort to create a draft environmental impact statement on steelhead fisheries. The effort is related to hatchery programs producing early-returning winter...

Date: 07/16/2015 | Explore NW

Get a guided tour of the night sky at Mount Rainier

A star-viewing party is scheduled from 9:45 to at least 11:45 p.m. (weather permitting) on Saturday at the Paradise area of Mount Rainier National Park, in front of the Jackson Visitor Center.

Date: 07/15/2015 | Explore NW

Mukilteo company rents devices that could save your life in great outdoors

Kevin Stoltz hates hearing about people getting lost or injured and dying while having adventures. He wants people to get out and explore, but he wants them to come home, too.

Date: 07/13/2015 | Business

Slower but sweeter

Really see the state with a trip on Bicycle Route 10

Date: 07/12/2015 | Life

Local nudist park attempts to set skinny dip record today

SULTAN — They’ve got the skinny on how to beat the heat here while continuing to celebrate independence this week.A Sultan nudist club is taking part in “Feel the Freedom,” an effort to set the world record for the most people skinny dipping at the same time on Saturday.

Date: 07/11/2015 | Life

Upcoming outdoor events

Birds of the Garden: Learn about birds commonly seen in gardens at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Camano Multipurpose Center, 141 N East Camano Drive. The presentation will examine skulls, feathers and feet of birds to understand what makes a bird a bird. The...

Date: 07/10/2015 | Life

Learn how to be an outdoor woman

An annual weekend workshop for women, presented by Washington Outdoor Women (WOW) and led by experts, is set for Sept. 18-20. WOW, now in its 18th year, is dedicated to teaching women outdoor skills and natural resources stewardship.

Date: 07/09/2015 | Explore NW

Options considered to restore grizzly bear population to county

People all over the world have weighed in on an effort to help ensure grizzly bears don’t become extinct in the North Cascades.

Date: 07/06/2015 | Local News

Meaningful Movies Network shows films that make viewers think

Some films simply entertain (or not); others raise awareness.

Date: 07/05/2015 | Entertainment

Celebrate the Mountains to Sound Greenway on foot, by bike

The Mountains to Sound Greenway Trust plans to celebrate its 25th anniversary with a multi-day bicycle ride and hikes on July 11 through 19.

Date: 07/05/2015 | Life

See far from up high

Darrington-area lookout being restored, will be available to rent

Date: 07/05/2015 | Explore NW

Learn more about nature at Forest Service events all summer long

Guided walks and other nature programs are planned throughout the summer on the Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest. Here are some of the upcoming events. Big Four Ice Caves: Rangers will lead interpretive hikes at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Saturdays and...

Date: 07/05/2015 | Life

Beach season is here

Jetty Island, Everett's version of paradise, opens on Sunday

Date: 07/05/2015 | Life

Loaner life jackets disappearing from parks around county

EVERETT — They hope it's not happening on purpose.It's easier to imagine a family walking off from a lake day, absentmindedly carrying home a loaner life jacket, when the alternative is blatant theft.Roughly 100 loaner life jackets were stocked in cabinets...

Date: 07/02/2015 | Local News

Climb a volcano

What you need to know to make it up Mount St. Helens

Date: 06/28/2015 | Life

Volunteers needed in Henry M. Jackson, Wild Sky and Alpine Lakes wildernesses

Do you like being outside? Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest could use your help. There are volunteer opportunities this summer in the Wild Sky, Henry M. Jackson and Alpine Lakes wilderness areas.

Date: 06/26/2015 | Explore NW

What a smoke-jumper sees when leaping from a plane

A fire is burning in Olympic National Park. It's strange to think of a rainforest having a wildfire.

Date: 06/25/2015 | Explore NW

Volunteers needed this weekend at fire lookout near Darrington

On Saturday, starting at 9 a.m., crews are going to be working on the North Mountain Lookout near Darrington.

Date: 06/25/2015 | Explore NW

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