Category archive for Dog-friendly

valley of fire-1

Hiking Valley of Fire

Arriving at the Valley of Fire at sunset leaves no question as to how the valley got its name. Spectacular red sandstone formations, glowing at golden hour, rise in sculpted shapes from the desert floor. The features are solidified shifting sand dunes from the age of dinosaurs. Of course, they’re also impressive in the morning and afternoon. The Valley of…

read » May 5, 2016
Gonzales Canyon

Hiking Gonzales Canyon

This moderate route through a trio of coastal canyons offers a nice respite from the crowded confines of suburban North County. Along the way, you’ll enjoy well-preserved stands of aromatic coastal sage-scrub before reaching an impressive grove of California sycamores along the banks of Gonzales Creek. In spite of coastal North County’s legendary beauty, hiking opportunities north of La Jolla…

read » April 25, 2016
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Hike the Wahkeena / Multnomah Falls Loop

This is it folks, THE trail to do in the Columbia River Gorge (okay, well, I think so anyways). Have a day in Portland? Or, do you live in Portland and have somehow missed this one? Do this hike. I will admit: I have now lived in Portland for five months, and have consciously avoided this trail. The few times I’ve seen…

read » April 13, 2016
Barker Valley

Hiking Barker Valley

Barker Valley in the Cleveland National Forest is a place where you can truly get away from it all. This narrow valley full of massive oaks and tranquil meadows sits in one of the more remote corners of the Palomar Mountains. While the valley itself is too small to qualify for wilderness status, the area has a distinct “wilderness,” feel, making for…

read » April 11, 2016
San Gorgonio via Vivian Creek

Hiking San Gorgonio Mountain via the Vivian Creek Trail

In June of 2015, the Lake Fire burned its way through thousands of acres of forest contained within the San Gorgonio Wilderness area of San Bernadino National Forest. Several popular trails, including the South Fork Trail to San Gorgonio Mountain, are now closed as a result (as of July 2015), leaving some of the more popular routes to the mountain…

read » December 27, 2015
Lake Calavera

Hiking Lake Calavera

Carlsbad’s Lake Calavera Preserve features wetlands, a lake, coastal sage-scrub, and volcanic Mt. Calavera. This oasis tucked into the suburban sprawl of North County offers satisfying diversity for a hike this brief, as well as a few adventurous moments and surprises on the trail. This 3.2 mile lollipop loop visits the most interesting and attractive features of the preserve. The…

read » November 10, 2015
will thrall peak

Hiking Will Thrall Peak via Buckhorn

Will Thrall Peak is one of the most rugged, challenging, and remote peaks in the San Gabriel Mountains. An absolutely epic day hike no matter which way you choose to tackle it, your effort and perseverance will be returned in kind with equal doses of jaw-dropping beauty, peaceful solitude, and a profound connection with the seemingly-untouched wilderness of the high…

read » November 5, 2015
cooper canyon falls

Hiking Cooper Canyon Falls

Cooper Canyon Falls is a beautiful and relatively easily-accessed waterfall in the San Gabriel high country. Just off the Burkhart Trail outside of the deservedly popular Buckhorn Campground, this is wonderful short day hike if you’re camping in the region, a great introduction to the high country, or a quick stop-over on the longer route to Will Thrall Peak (or,…

read » November 5, 2015
Duck Lake

Hike Duck Lake

If you think sparkling aquamarine lakes and shimmering frosted peaks are the stuff of faraway epic adventures, you’ll be surprised at just how quickly you’re immersed in stunning scenery on this spectacular hike just a short drive from the bustling ski town of Mammoth Lakes, California. Your journey begins at the Duck Pass trailhead (elevation 9,128’), where you’ll find ample parking,…

read » October 28, 2015
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Backpack Indian Heaven Wilderness via Thomas Lake

While the pacific northwest is generally known and beloved for its epic vistas and high peaks, it is also home to countless wilderness areas offering unique environments, from newly formed volcanic zones to small and quiet meadows full of wildflowers. Indian Heaven Wilderness, located two hours from Portland within the Gifford Pinchot National Forest of southern Washington is one such…

read » October 26, 2015
Tuttle Creek Ashram

Hike To The Tuttle Creek Ashram

Mountains have long served as spiritual destinations for those seeking enlightenment. The pursuit of peace, solitude, and even the feeling of being elevated closer to the heavens draws people to heights near and far, from the Buddhist monasteries perched on China’s loftiest peaks to the myriad temples strung across the Himalaya. For those lacking in frequent flier miles, but seeking…

read » October 21, 2015
la tuna canyon

Hiking La Tuna Canyon

If you’re looking for a trail with a bit of that “off the beaten path” feel but still wouldn’t mind keeping an eye on civilization from its vista points, the La Tuna Canyon Trail is a good bet. This meandering 4.3 mile trail provides some decent elevation gain in sections and a surprising variety of scenery — from deep, shaded…

read » October 9, 2015
Long Lake outlet

Hike South Lake to Long Lake

Craving postcard-worthy Sierra views, but don’t have the time (or perhaps, the inclination) to haul a backpack deep into the wilds? Then you’ll likely enjoy this short, but insanely sweet jaunt to Long Lake via the Bishop Pass Trail out of South Lake, where you’ll find yourself almost immediately surrounded by massive granite peaks and shimmering alpine waters. While this…

read » October 8, 2015
Mt. Baden-Powell

Hike Mt. Baden-Powell via Islip Saddle

For most hikers, the trip up to Mt. Baden-Powell involves a relatively straight-forward switchbacking route up from Vincent Gap. This popular 4 mile stretch of the Pacific Crest Trail marches crookedly up the northeast side of the peak, and on any given weekend, a fairly steady steady stream of dayhikers and backpackers can be found making their laborious ways to the summit.…

read » October 7, 2015
ute trail

Hiking the Ute Trail

In the colder months, the Winter Park Resort in the town of the same name is Colorado’s oldest continuously-operating ski resort. More recently, the area has also been opening up to mountain cyclists in the summer as Trestle Bike Park. The park operates miles of biking trails of various difficulties, as well as family-friendly activities like an alpine sled, mini…

read » September 22, 2015
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Hike Viejas Mountain

Viejas Mountain is a monster. It’s not a monster like El Cajon Mountain, which requires you to climb up and down and then back up and down again some more before it grudgingly gives up its stunning summit views. And, it’s not a monster like the Agua Tibia Loop, which assaults your poor knees and feet with endless miles before revealing its own…

read » September 17, 2015
Hiking Triple Falls Oregon

Hike Triple Falls in the Columbia River Gorge

NOTE: This trail was heavily damaged by a rainstorm just before Thanksgiving, 2015. The trail appears to still be passable in the lower reaches but about a mile past Triple Falls, the Oneonta Trail has been washed out and there is no safe or recommended way to pass. The trail below this point has had some trees come down and…

read » September 10, 2015
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Hiking Goat Lake

Few hikes give you this much bang for your buck. Even though the 10-mile roundtrip trek might seem daunting to less experienced hikers, the elevation gain of a mere 1300 feet is minimal. While most lakes nestled in the Northern Cascades make you work for a refreshing dip by forcing you to climb an exhausting amount in a shorter distance, the beauty of Goat Lake…

read » September 2, 2015
Photo by Jared Edmunds for Modern Hiker

Hike Dog Mountain

Dog Mountain is a well-trod 6-miler that will allow you to choose between two difficulties, hard and harder. Thankfully, it’s a lot more accessible than it sounds, and will give you that sense of accomplishment afterward. Plus, you’ll also get the chance to hike through a cloud-infused fog or soak in expansive views of the Columbia River Gorge dependent on…

read » August 31, 2015
Black Mountain summit through morning mist

Hiking Black Mountain

Mountaintops are pretty hard to come by on the heavily-developed strip of land between the Pacific Ocean and Highway 15 in San Diego County. Most of the non-developed topography is dominated by a series of shallow canyons, coastal bluffs, and tidal lagoons. The few hills through this region, such as Mt. Soledad or the bluffs at Torrey Pines, provide nice…

read » August 26, 2015