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
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.