Year In Review
was another very good hiking year. After a relatively lesser year in
2016 I bounced back with 860 mies vs 818 and 223,300' of elevation gain
vs. 212,800'. Ironically, I had exactly the same 91 trips. This was my
eighth consecutive year with at least 800 miles hiked and my thirteenth
over 700 miles. It was my fifteenth consecutive year with at least
200,000' of elevation gain. Last year I only managed to get in one
backpacking trip. This year I at least managed four trips. Two were
first time trips. This was our eighth year of midweek headlamp
hikes. I made it to about three trips a month from October through
I aim for at least 10 new trails each year. I had a very good year for
trails with 15. With an average of over a dozen per year, I have added
about 180 new trails in the 15 1/2 years since this site was
established. A small number of trips each year really add up.
Speaking of the website, it continues to grow and
757 trip reports
photos. I added 49 new reports with photos. That was a little
less than the previous few years. The site passed its fifteenth
birthday this past March. It is hard to believe how much time has gone
by since I started the site.
I do not set a specific goal for miles, elevation, summits, or nights
out backpacking each year. I just get out as often as possible. The one
exception is trying to reach 10,000' of elevation gain each month. This
is just an ongoing goal. If I do that it means I'm getting out often
and staying in good shape. My streak is now at 148 months and counting.
This was a strange year in one regard. Most years I have one low month.
I just can't get out as often as I'd like. I almost always have at
least one big month. A low month is usually 45-55 miles. A big month is
90-100+ miles. This year my worst month was 64 miles. My biggest month
was 79 miles. Only one long 15 mile day hike separated best from worst.
I would be surprised if that ever happens again.
All totaled, my 860 miles hiked was the seventh highest in the 35 years
I have kept records. My 223,300' of elevation gain was my eighth best
Well enough of the old stuff. It's time to get down to a month by month
review. This adds a little more info for trip planning compared to just
reading my hiking log. Now it's time to get started with January of
The year began with a cold sunny day on Tiger Mountain hiking to Poo Poo
Point. I had three more close in
hikes then did a 12 mile loop at Wallace
Falls & Lake. Next, Gary
and I go tin a cross country ski trip
at Snoqualmie Pass. I ended the month with a trip to Hex Mountain
with Janet and Steve. For the month I hiked 73 miles with 16,500' of
gain. Better than average for January.
two more close in hikes Kim joined me for a trip to Blanchard
Hill just south of Bellingham.
We had a rare sunny day with some ice up high. Gary and I had a long
flat 16 miles ski trip on the Iron
Horse rail grade. A week later
we had our third ski trip of the year together. A 12 mile trip up Amabilis
Mountain was a great trip. For
the month I hiked 65 miles with 13,800' of gain. My lowest elevation
gain month but still not too bad.
John, and I joint others for a snowshoe work party putting up blue
diamonds on the Nordic
Pass Trail. More close in hikes
then John and I did a traverse over Rattlesnake
Mountain. Snow up high and my
first visit since the ridge top was scalped. It did open up good views.
The two trip reports written were the least for any month. I hiked 70
miles with 17,700' of gain.
I hiked up Mt.
Washington with snow up high. I
checked out some new trails on an East
Tiger Mountain loop trip. After
finally hiking on the north end of Chuckanut
Mountain several years ago I
have made it an annual event. It was a warm sunny Easter Sunday hike.
Kim and I went north to Rockport
State Park and then the Beaver
Lake Trail. Lots of spring wildflowers in bloom. I ended the month with
a trip east with Gary and John to the Westberg
Trail. This time I made it all
the way to the observatory. Yet another month right around 70 miles.
For the month I hiked 72 miles with 18,900' of elevation gain.
and I started the month with a trip east to the Iron
Horse Trail east of South Cle
Elum. Lots of wildflowers in bloom. I joined Janet and Steve again for
a trip east to Black
Canyon. We took a ridge route
down. Great wildflowers again. Another new trail section as Kim and I
hiked the Suiattle
River Trail to Canyon Creek.
Gwen joined me for another camp atop a
snowy Iron Peak.
Good weather and a fun hike. Gary joined me for a long 14 mile hike on
Creek Trail. More wildflowers in
bloom. Kim and I hiked the Deception
Creek Trail. Lots of solitude
once again.May tied January with the
highest mileage so far this year at 73 miles. I gained
June had 8 hikes and one bike ride. The month started with a trip to DeRoux
Janet. We turned around on the ridge as the snow was rotten on a steep
section. Almost total solitude. Next came another Snoqualmie
Tunnel bike ride. Gary and I
have done it a number of times. This
time John could not make it. A fun 35 mile loop after work. Kim and I
did a first ever hike on the Diablo
A really fun trip. I drove far east for a long day loop trip to Devil's
Mission Ridge. 17 miles tied my
longest day trip of the year. I
joined Kirsten and Steve for a car trip up Reecer
with a little hiking too. Terrific wildflowers up there again. I ended
the month with John's Boeing group for a hike up to Mason
Lake. Tons of
beargrass in bloom. I hiked 68 miles with 17,600' of elevation gain.
The month started with another first time hike. Kim and I hiked up to Hope
Lakes. Some patchy snow and
amazing solitude on the PCT. Kim and I
hiked the Downey
Creek Trail again then went up
an old boot path to a lake high on
the ridge. A long trip to Little
and Thorp Mt. Lookout became
longer when Kim took a wrong turn.
Another 17 mile day. Gary and John joined me for another steep hike up Sulphur
hot day with great views. Janet and I did an overnight trip to Rainbow
first time camping there after many many visits. The last trip of the
month was fantastic. I had long wanted to backpack on Lost
Ridge. Gary, John, and I had a
great time. For the month I hiked 78
miles with a yearly high of 26,800' of elevation gain.
Forest fire smoke was a problem from mid summer until it started
raining. I planned hikes to minimize it. I joined Janet & Steve
a loop trip through Spray
Good wildflower show though past peak. Gwen & I did Alta
Mountain via Lillian and Rampart
Lakes. A fun route. Gary, John,
and I did a great overnight trip to Devil's
Crater Mt. Terrific scenery and
it was over 90 degrees on the way
down. For the month I hiked 77 miles and had my second and last 20,000'
month finishing with 22,400'.
Kim and I did our second loop trip on the Scott
Trail. This time we did not make
it to Park Butte Lookout. It was a
hot day. Sunny with great scenery. I did an early morning trip of Squak
Mt. getting down by 10:00 am just as the smoke filled the air. I
explored a new bike trail to West Rattlesnake Mt. Fun but crowded hike.
Gary and I hiked up to Red
Pass after work. Almost total
solitude. Gary & I went up Mt.
and went to Big Four Ice Caves later. Some good fall colors. Kim joined
me for a trip to the Kendall
via Commonwealth Creek. It was 35 degrees and wet at the Katwalk. 64
miles hiked was my lowest of the year though only 15 miles less than my
highest. 18,200' gained was my sixth best month.
Rains finally began to put out forest fires and clear the air. A trip
up Mt. Washington started another season of midweek headlamp hikes.
Gary, John, and I headed to Ingalls
a larch hike. The Teanaway had been closed by fire for months. The
larch were close to peak and excellent. Gary, John, and I headed to Mt.
Rainier for a hike from White River to Mt.
road to Sunrise had recently closed. Very few folks at a place that is
mobbed until the road closes. I hiked 70 miles for the month with
19,600' of elevation gain.
I started the month with a 10 mile loop on East
My first snowy hike of the season. For the third time I did a 17 mile
hike, my longest day hike of the year. It was a mostly road route to West
Rattlesnake Mt. from Highway 18.
I had total solitude until near
the summit. A long but very fast hike. My second and last trip report
of the month was for a loop trip to Wallace
Falls & Lake. Kim joined
me. Lots of water over the falls. For
the month I hiked 79 miles. That was my highest month of the year. Very
unusual that it was a November. I gained 17,100' of elevation.
McKeever invited Kim & I to come up north for a
I was aware of the trail but it was my first visit.
Deeper snow on top than expected. A long but fun day. I did four more
hikes on Rattlesnake and Tiger Mountains then headed to Lake 22
for a very cold
and icy trip. It was only 13 degrees at the lake. John joined me for my
annual New Year's Eve hike. We did a one way hike over Tiger Mountain.
We hiked above the clouds into bright sunshine. A great day to finish
up another year on the trail. For the month I hiked 71 miles with
19,000' of elevation gain.
My Top 10 Trips
01. Lost Creek Ridge
02. Devil's Park -
03. Iron Peak
04. Ingalls Lake
05. Lillian &
Rampart Lakes + Alta Mt.
06. Devil's Gulch
09. Little Joe Lake
& Thorp Mt. Lookout
10. Sulphur Mountain