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Backpacker Magazine – May 2010

Local Hikes: Northwest

See five volcanoes, camp at secluded lakes, and hike through a swarm of butterflies. (Click linked trips for GPS waypoints, photos, and more.)

by: Ted Alvarez, Shannon Davis, and Kim Phillips.

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(Map by Andrew Matranga.)
(Map by Andrew Matranga.)
(Map by Andrew Matranga.)
(Map by Andrew Matranga.)

Nathan Barnes
Seattle, WA
Barnes scours maps for less-traveled paths.The result? He’s hiked more than 350 off-the-radar miles a year for the past three years, which makes choosing one top hike pretty hard. 
Favorite hike (currently) Washington’s Alta Mountain and Tin Cup Joe Falls

David Tate
Puyallup, WA
Favorite hike
Wonderland Trail, Rainier NP

Eli Boschetto
Portland, OR
Favorite hike
Enchantment Lakes, Alpine Lakes Wilderness

1. Best view: From Mt. St. Helens
The 10.6-mile Worm Flow Trail leads to a crater rim vista of Mts. Rainier, Adams, Hood, and Baker. 

2. Best falls hike: Eagle Creek Trail
See seven falls in seven miles (tallest: 140-foot Twister Falls) on this cliffside trek.

3. Top basecamp: Middle Fork Campground
Easy access to Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie NF trails, like Snoqualmie Lake Trail (11 miles) 

4. Favorite weekend: Alpine Lakes Wilderness
Day one: Climb to 7,800-foot Aasgard Pass from Stuart Lake trailhead. Camp on a spit on Leprechaun Lake. Day two: Hike to Prusik Peak; camp at Snow Lakes. End at Snow Creek trailhead. (22.2 miles)

5. Top dream trip: Denali NP
Do the 14.6-mile loop around Mt. Eielson for mind-melting Alaska Range views.

6. Best week: Grand Loop, Sawtooth NF

Gain almost 64,000 feet on a 65-mile loop through the jagged heart of one of America’s biggest (and least traveled) wildernesses. You’ll see 33 peaks higher than 10,000 feet, camp by quiet lakes, and finish with a Sun Valley Ale in Stanley.

7. Wildlife: Strawberry Mountain Wilderness
In summer, butterflies mob the milkweed that lines the trails here. Link Slide Basin and Skyline Trails in July for a 17.8-mile blizzard of monarchs.

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