10 Tips on How to Crush Your Next Hike

Lorin Lindell

Did you know Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest is one of the most visited forests in the United States? Hikers experience a range of views, from glaciers and mountain meadows to old-growth forests. Western students can stay within city limits and explore several hikes such as Historic Chuckanut Drive. If you are looking for more nature, Mt. Baker is a short hour and a half drive from Western.

Miranda Abrashi is a senior at Western and is graduating Spring of 2019 with a major in Communication and Business.  When she isn’t working at Extended Education, Miranda can be found exploring Washington State.

What is your favorite Mt. Baker Trail?
“I love going up to Table Mountain and Artists Point for night photography. I also enjoy Hidden Lake Lookout Trail which is in the North Cascades National Park. The best part is no parking pass is required, you only need one if you’re going to camp overnight.”

Sunset in the mountains with a silouhetted woman in shorts standing near a rock enjoying the views.

Sunset from the route to North Twin

Favorite trail in Washington State?
“Depends on the weather and day of course. During the summer I go up to Baker Lake in Concrete, Washington. If it’s rainy and I can’t commit to a long drive, Chuckanut Drive is a close second. It’s so close that even during a busy week I can find time to go outside.”

What advice do you have for fellow hikers?
“Be present while you’re hiking. Enjoy the journey as much as the destination. Stop often and take in your surroundings. No matter how many times you do the same hike you’ll always see something new.”

VIew of mt baker in the distance with trees in the foreground

Panoramic photo of Mt. Baker

What is your must have for every hike?
“A disposable camera to capture the natural beauty.”

What is your recommendation for those new to hiking Mt. Baker?
“Bring your ten essentials; extra food, water, sun protection, raincoat, and emergency shelter. Always be prepared to stay longer than you planned on - more times than not I want to go further or stay longer than I originally thought so I always pack for it. Better to be over prepared.”

Hikers making their way up the side of a mountain. There are views of the surrounding mountains.

Hiking toward Lake Ann


10 Tips on How to Crush Your Next Hike:

  1. Hike with a Group
    Hiking with a group is safer and can be more fun. Put a group together a hiking group or join one of WWU’s hiking events! (http://as.wwu.edu/outdoor/excursions/)
  2. Check the Weather
    Make sure you know what the weather will be like before you go and how it will affect the trail.
  3. Dress for Success
    Washington weather can change quickly. Be prepared for anything. Wear light layers and make sure to bring a raincoat.
  4. Bring Plenty of Water
    Bring plenty of water and make be aware of how much you are drinking. You need enough for the way up and coming back down.
  5. Happy Feet = Happy Hiker
    Make sure you have the proper footwear and socks. It is also good to bring Band-Aids for an emergency or for a blister. You will enjoy the hike and be more focused if you aren’t thinking about your sore feet.

    A group of hikers enjoying the panaramic views from the top of a mountain.

    Remember to stop and enjoy the view

  6. Don’t Count on Your Cell Phone
    Depending on where you are hiking, you may or may not have service. Make sure you are not depending on your phone for directions and that you have a plan in place in case it dies or you lose service.
  7. Take your Time
    You want to enjoy the hike and the view, don’t just rush through. Make sure you are taking breaks as often as you need and that everyone is comfortable with the pace.
  8. Leave No Trace
    The Pacific Northwest is home to beautiful hikes and great views. Remember to keep them that way, if you pack it in, pack it out.
  9. Tell Someone Where You are Going
    Even if you are traveling in a group it is important that someone knows what's going on. Make sure at least one person knows where you will be hiking and what time you expect be back.
  10. Check out the WWU AS Outdoor Center
    For more great tips visit http://as.wwu.edu/outdoor/