Just in time for spring…

One of the most common reasons Seattle people give for not getting rid of their cars is that they need to drive to get out of the city*. It’s one thing to give up driving to and from work and for the odd errand, but it’s hard for Northwesterners to imagine a life without hiking, camping, skiing**, snowshoeing, or just getting closer to some of the beautiful scenery that surrounds us. Fellow transit types, I have good news. I have just been introduced to my new favorite Web site (OK, so it’s not my all-time favorite, but I’m prone to hyperbole), Hike Metro. As the name implies, it provides a comprehensive guide to hikes in Western Washington that you can reach by bus.

An excerpt from the introduction:

Despite the limitations of the current transit system, it’s quite possible to use public transit right now to get to the outdoors. This guide shows you how to make use of King County’s extensive bus system, as well as other transit options, to get out and enjoy many hikes without a car. And these hikes aren’t necessarily all just strolls in the park, although some walks through city parks in Bellevue and Seattle are included. Full day outings are emphasized in this guidebook, and quite a few of the hikes are strenuous. Some multi-day backpack trips are included as well. These trips are real wilderness adventures, and proper wilderness skills and equipment are needed to accomplish them enjoyably.

This is a great resource. It includes lots of day hikes (some right in the city), and even multi-day excursions for those brave enough to bring their gear. Our little bus family will definitely try one of the day hikes this summer. The longer ones will have to wait until Chicklet can carry her own pack.

* Though Bus Nerd and I have always rented a car for our annual pilgrimage to Tahoma, we have managed several car-free out-of-town excursions (Mount Vernon, Friday Harbor, and a fall foliage tour of the Cascades, to name a few).
** I posted a few resources for bus-based skiers back in December of 2006.