Category archive for Trail Write-Ups

Balboa Park 2

Hiking the El Prado Loop in Balboa Park

From 1915-1916, the city of San Diego held an exposition on the site of what was then known as City Park to commemorate the opening of the Panama Canal. In honor of the occasion, exposition planners re-christened the park after Vasco Nuñez de Balboa, the Spaniard who first sighted the Pacific Ocean during Spain’s exploration of Panama. Many of the buildings…

read » September 12, 2016
Chief Mountain Trail

Hike to Chief Mountain

Colorado is home to some of the tallest peaks in the country. With 53 peaks that rank taller than 14,000 ft., it’s safe to say Colorado is prime time “fourteener country”. Hiking to the top of one is something many strive for. Some might do it to see how fast they can summit, and some might do it because it’s a challenge. But…

read » September 7, 2016
Lundy Canyon (13)

Hiking Lundy Canyon

Whenever I embark on a discussion about the merits and demerits of the Southern California climate, inevitably somebody brings up the deplorable “lack” of fall color. People point at the ornamental liquid ambers on the street and scoff at the non-native trees as if this is California’s sorry excuse for one of the better spectacles the natural world has to offer. I…

read » September 6, 2016
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Hiking Tillamook Head Trail in Ecola State Park

From the northern Tillamook Head trailhead, hikers will be treated to a dense — and damp — coastal rain forest. The town of Seaside, just to the north of the trailhead, has an average of 194 days of precipitation each year and an average annual rainfall accumulation of more than 6 feet. So if you’re headed here for a hike, be…

read » September 1, 2016
oneonta gorge-17

Hiking Oneonta Gorge

For years, Northwestern hikers were aware of Oneonta Gorge. They enjoyed it, the stories go, but nobody was crazy about it — certainly not worth dealing with a crowded trailhead or dozens of other hikers on the route, especially when there were so many other phenomenal hiking options so close by. But then, as is often the case, social media…

read » August 31, 2016
Lahaina Pali (11)

Hiking Lahaina Pali

Before the arrival of Europeans, ancient Mauians needed to find a way around a particularly rugged stretch of coastline dominated by sea cliffs, jagged lava outcrops, and rough surf. If one of these Hawaiians was not lucky enough to know somebody willing to lend a canoe, they’d have to find another way to get around this inhospitable terrain. The early…

read » August 22, 2016
Berry Creek Falls

Hiking the Berry Creek Falls Loop

Deep in the heart of California’s oldest state park lie a trio of waterfalls crashing into grottos shaded by towering redwood trees. The popular Berry Creek Falls loop visits these waterfalls via a moderately difficult loop passing through pristine, old-growth redwoods nestled into the large basin that lends this park its name. Big Basin lies in the western half of the Santa…

read » August 12, 2016
canyon de chelly

Hike the White House Ruins in Canyon de Chelly

This three mile trip from the rim to the floor of the canyon stops near the famous White House Ruins and is the only trail in the entire Canyon de Chelly National Monument that can be hiked without a Navajo guide or Park Ranger. Canyon de Chelly National Monument is a unique unit of the National Park Service for several…

read » August 11, 2016
Sugar Pine Trail

Hiking the Sugar Pine Trail

This moderate looping hike features the world’s tallest pine, the sugar pine. As the trail follows the southern rim of the Giant Forest Plateau between Moro Rock and Crescent Meadow, you’ll see numerous examples of this graceful tree. You’ll also enjoy sweeping views from Bobcat Point, a stop at Crescent Meadow, and a beautiful pond along Crescent Creek. Giant Forest…

read » August 10, 2016
big pine lakes palisade glacier-40

Big Pine Lakes and Palisade Glacier via Sam Mack Meadow

An exceptionally beautiful route for day hiking or backpacking, this trek along the North Fork of Big Pine Creek passes several stunning alpine lakes and offers numerous opportunities for idyllic backcountry wilderness camping as well as several more strenuous technical routes to nearby peaks and the Palisade Glacier. It’s no secret that the Eastern Sierra is not short on jaw-dropping…

read » August 2, 2016
Panorama Point Trail

Hiking the Panorama Point Trail

With the Rockies as Denver’s backyard playground, it feels like the mountains are constantly beckoning. Unfortunately we can’t always make time to get out into the the thick of the backcountry. Sometimes we just need a little micro adventure to satisfy our nature cravings. Luckily the Front Range has an extensive number of hikes just an hour away from the Queen City. Panorama…

read » July 28, 2016
miette hot springs-9

Hike to the Source of Miette Hot Springs

A short, easy walk to the historic ruins of the original Miette Hot Springs bathhouse and the source of the springs themselves — the hottest in the Canadian Rockies! So you’ve earned a solid lunch hiking up to the Sulphur Skyline. You’ve enjoyed a well-earned soak in the Miette Hot Springs. You probably think that’s all there is to do…

read » July 27, 2016
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Hiking the Sulphur Skyline Trail

A just-under 5 mile trek to a mountain peak overlooking a phenomenally rugged section of the Canadian Rockies. This moderately strenuous hike is a steady climb the whole way up, and the frequently changing weather conditions may determine just how far you actually make it on the trail. No matter how tough you find this route, it has one of…

read » July 27, 2016
Punta Mesa

Hiking the Punta Mesa & Trans-Preserve Loop

This moderately strenuous loop showcases the beauty and diversity of the Santa Rosa Plateau in satisfying fashion. As you make your way along the southern third of the reserve, you’ll sample nearly every ecosystem on the plateau, including grasslands, Engelmann and coast live oak woodlands, chaparral, sage-scrub, and riparian woodlands. You’ll also visit the historic adobe compound, and you’ll have…

read » July 26, 2016
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Hiking Maligne Canyon

This 5-mile lollipop loop just east of Jasper Townsite takes you along the Maligne River and into the ever-narrowing Maligne Canyon — the deepest gorge in the Canadian Rockies. As the canyon progresses, the walls get taller and close in on the river, creating tumbling cascades and waterfalls through the slot-like canyon. Springs are abound on this route and water…

read » July 26, 2016
moraine lake-1

Hiking Moraine Lake

A stunning area for autumn larch foliage, the easy trail around one shore of Moraine Lake is a must-hike for photographers and lovers of epic scenery in the summer as well. There are lots of opportunities for outdoor adventures here, including kayaking in the aquamarine lake and longer backpacking treks into Consolation or Larch Valleys or across the Wenkchemna and…

read » July 25, 2016
Soldiers Loop

Hiking the Soldiers Loop

This beautiful loop through a quiet corner of Giant Forest offers a bit of park history, beautiful meadows, giant sequoias, and some phenomenal sunset viewing spots at Moro Rock and Hanging Rock. Set aside a cool June evening to get the best out of the hike so that you can enjoy the late evening views west over the Sierra Foothills.…

read » July 21, 2016
Edith Cavell Glacier-7

Hiking to Angel Glacier at Mount Edith Cavell

This short and relatively easy trail puts you within sight of the hanging Angel Glacier and the otherworldly blue glacial pond beneath Mount Edith Cavell — the most prominent peak entirely within the boundaries of Alberta — which was named for an incredible heroine of World War I. Further trail options include a beautiful alpine meadow, and a challenging technical ascent of…

read » July 20, 2016
sunshine meadows-12

Hiking Sunshine Meadows

A figure-8 loop across the border into British Columbia that passes the Continental Divide and three stunning alpine lakes beyond a popular ski resort. With waterfalls and snow in the early summer, spectacular wildflower displays later in the season, and golden larches in the fall, this is often called Canada’s best day hike … and for good reason. Sunshine Meadows…

read » July 19, 2016
Scodie Mountain from the PCT

Hike Scodie Mountain via Northeast Ridge

Note: This map renders additional distance on this route for some reason. The GPX is accurate at 6.9 miles roundtrip. Scodie Mountain is the highest peak in the Scodie Mountain subrange of the southern Sierra Nevada mountains. While this peak doesn’t qualify as a classic, the solitude and views easily make it a worthwhile objective if you are looking for…

read » July 15, 2016