Looking for the best hikes in Washington State? We picked out a few that we’re sure you’ll enjoy!
Washington State is one of the best places to go hiking in the USA, during any season. It is home to three national parks, dozens of state parks, and iconic natural landmarks. Washington State is also well-known for its lush greenery. Beautiful panoramic views of forests, mountains, and coastal landscapes await.
The wilderness in this part of the United States is unrivaled, so why not get out and explore? Grab your backpacks, lace up your hiking boots, and have a look at these six amazing hikes. We reckon they are among the best hikes in Washington State.
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Best Hikes in Washington State
This 3.3 mile long hiking trail will reward you with stunning views of mountains, forests, and alpine lakes. Located in Mount Pilchuck National Park, this trail is rated as easy to intermediate, and the beauty you’ll find on this hike is certainly worth the challenge. Starting out flat and gradually becoming a true mountain rain forest path, you’ll eventually reach an elevation of 2400 feet.
As you reach the namesake of this trail, Lake 22, it gets wetter, so be sure to have the right footwear! When you finally reach this pristine lake with the backdrop of the majestic Mount Pilchuck, you’ll be awed by the views. There’s also a path that circles around the entire lake, so if you’ve got time to explore, we would recommend taking your time to make the extra trek.
Mount Storm King
Located near Port Angeles in the Olympic National Park, this trail is rated as difficult and isn’t for beginners. Short but steep, this 3.8-mile roundtrip hike will reward you at the top with magnificent views of Lake Crescent and the surrounding landscape of the Olympic Peninsula. With over 2,000 feet of elevation gain, it has a panoramic view you won’t soon forget.
Also, be prepared to sweat. The last section of this hike will include a scramble and some ropes to help you get to the top, so be sure you know what you’re getting into before you start. If you’re afraid of heights, this isn’t something we’d recommend trying. For the more adventurous spirits, though, this challenge will be worth it. Once you reach the summit, take your time reaping the rewards of your hike by enjoying the view and seeing how high you’ve really climbed.
This trail is located in the Rattlesnake Mountain Scenic Area. One of the most popular hikes in the Seattle area, you can expect to run into lots of other hikers on the trail. This hike is 4 miles roundtrip and has some beautiful lookout points along the way. With views of Rattlesnake Lake and an unrivaled photo opportunity at Rattlesnake Ridge, it’s easy to see why this hike is so popular.
You’ll also find a beautiful park below Rattlesnake Ridge if you’re looking to relax and have a snack during your hike. If you visit during the summer, you’ll also find kayakers and swimmers enjoying the pristine waters of Rattlesnake Lake. Once you’re done with this trail, it has several offshoots to different ones if you’re looking to extend your hike.
One of the most famous hikes in Mount Rainier National Park, this is also one of the most crowded. As a result, it’s easy to see why this is one of the best hikes in Washington state. This moderate trail located in the Paradise hiking area is perfect if you’re looking to see all the highlights of the national park, but maybe not so much if you’re looking for some solitude. This 5.9-mile loop is rated as moderate, and provides access to many other longer trails if you’re looking to extend your trip.
Starting at the historic Paradise Inn, this hike will provide you with breathtaking scenery around the entire loop. You’ll pass through majestic mountain rain forest, see sub-alpine meadows, and be awed by cascading waterfalls, all with a view of Washington’s iconic Mount Rainier as a backdrop.
Hoh River Trail
Another hike located in the Olympic National Park, this is one of the best hikes in Washington state. This trail is more than 17 miles round trip, but there are so many offshoots and attractions that you can really make hiking this trail your very own adventure. Not very steep but still providing beautiful scenery and views, you may even want to camp overnight to be sure you explore as much of it as you possibly can.
The trail remains fairly level most of the way, making this the perfect hike for families with small children. Towards the end, however, it can grow a little steeper and more challenging as you approach the Blue Glacier and Mount Olympus. No matter how far you decide to take this trail, you’ll be rewarded with views of snow capped mountains, the Pacific coastline, and beautiful mountain rain forest.
Wallace Falls Trail
Also in the Seattle area, this trail is located in Wallace State Park and is easily accessible. Rated as moderate, this trail is 5.6 miles roundtrip and is one of the best hikes in Washington state for those looking for their fix of waterfalls. During this hike, you’ll encounter no fewer than nine majestic, cascading waterfalls on the Wallace River.
This hike is split into the lower, middle, and upper sections of the river, so there will be some climbing involved, but the rewards will be well worth it. While you take in the sights and smells of the falls, you’ll also have an amazing view of the Skykomish River Valley below you.
There you have it, six of the best hikes in Washington state for all levels of hikers. Whether you’re looking for an easier family-friendly walk or a more challenging climb to one of Washington’s most iconic lookout points, you’ll be able to find what you’re after.
Pick any one of these hikes and you won’t be disappointed – and you’ll be coming back for more. After all, Washington state has some of the most beautiful nature in the entire country, so it would be a shame not to take advantage of the opportunity to explore it!