30 within 30: Outdoor Adventures

Getting Outdoors doesn’t have to be difficult! It doesn’t matter what the weather is, you’ll find yourself having a great time outdoors in any conditions with these 30 things to do outdoors within 30 minutes of Bellevue College (and for $30 or less)!

Seattle

Unlock the outdoor wonders that lay throughout the big city, whether you tack it onto the end of your day or simply looking for a nearby escape, “go west”!

1. Kayak on Lake Union

A quick drive to NorthWest Outdoor Center in Seattle, and you’ll find yourself in a kayak paddling around Lake Union, show your BC Student ID and get a discount on gear rentals.

  • Cost: TBD (possible to get 2 hours for 30 dollars?)
  • Activities: Watersports- Kayak
  • Drive time: 22 minutes
  • Location/Directions: 2100 Westlake Avenue North, 1, Seattle, WA 98109

2. Discover Discovery Park

You’ll forget you are even in Seattle when you visit Discovery Park, where you will discover a series of beautiful easy trails surrounded by forest that will guide you down to the beach, a perfect place to explore in any weather! No parking fee.

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Hike
  • Drive time: 28 minutes
  • Location/Directions: 3801 Discovery Park Blvd, Seattle, WA 98199

3. Wander the Ballard Locks

Discover why this beautiful area is such a great place to enjoy in any weather! With a salmon ladder, extensive botanical garden, and ship passage, there is so much to learn and discover here around the water with weather of any kind.

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Walk, learn
  • Drive time: 30 minutes
  • Locations/Directions: 3015 NW 54th St, Seattle, WA 98107

4. Schmitz Preserve Park

Old growth trees, a full forest, all found within only 53 acres? You may think you’re in the Issaquah Alps, but you’re in the heart of West Seattle. A quick tree-covered escape only minutes away from Alki Beach.

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Hike
  • Drive time: 24 minutes
  • Locations/Directions: Schmitz Blvd, Seattle, WA 98116

5. Alki Beach

An essential visit for anyone living in the greater Seattle area, break out those wheels- bikes, boards, blades, and travel the 2.5 mile stretch of beach, packed with history, art, scenery of the Olympics and Sound, and even a lighthouse, rediscover Alki beach!

  • Cost:
  • Activities:
  • Drive time: 25 minutes
  • Location/Directions: Alki Ave SW, Seattle WA 98116

6. Lincoln Park

Following all the outdoor adventures you’re discovering in Seattle, find yourself on the trails throughout Lincoln Park and on the rocky beaches on the sound.

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Hike
  • Drive time: 27 minutes
  • Location/Directions: 8011 Fauntleroy Way SW, Seattle, WA 98136

7. Seward Park

Well known for its Audubon Center, Seward Park houses 2.4 miles of trails to hike and bike where you can enjoy old growth forest, eagles, and

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Bike, Hike
  • Drive time: 28 minutes
  • Location/Directions: 5900 Lake Washington Blvd. S, Seattle, WA 98118 – Follow I-90 W to Rainier Ave S in Seattle. Take exit 3A from I-90 W. Continue on Rainier Ave S. Turn left onto S Genesee St. Turn right onto 51st Ave S in order to continue left on S Genesee Way. Turn right onto Lake Washington Blvd S stay leftfor 1.1 mi until you turn left onto Seward Park Rd.

8. Canoe Lake Washington

Explore Union Bay and the Montlake Cut through a different perspective, rent a Canoe from the UW Waterfront Activities Center and enjoy the wetland animals and plants you ca find right in Seattle.

  • Cost: $10/hour weekday, $12/hour weekend
  • Activities: Watersports- Canoe
  • Drive time: 20 minutes
  • Location/Directions: 3710 Montlake Blvd NE, Seattle, WA 98195

Between the Lakes

Bellevue College is at an amazing location, discover the many ways you can get outdoors only minutes from campus!

9. Weowna Park

Have you been to Weowna? Near Lake Sammamish, find an old growth forest filled with small creeks to make a quick escape from the heat right here in Bellevue!

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Hike
  • Drive time: 11 minutes
  • Location/Directions: Lake to Lake Trail Start, 271-, 411 West Lake Sammamish Parkway Southeast, Bellevue, WA 98008

10. Bridle Trails State Park

Did you know Bellevue has a State Park? Shared with Kirkland, Bridle Trails is filled with loops and strolls of varying miles, but you’re guaranteed to see beautiful forests and greenery, this is also a common location for horse riders, so no surprise if you spot one near the trail!

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Hike
  • Drive time: 17 minutes
  • Location/Directions: Raven Trail, Kirkland, WA 98033

11. Mercer Slough Nature Park

In the heart of Bellevue, discover Washington’s largest remaining wetlands containing incredible diverse wildlife. Follow paved The Periphery Trail on a bike or rollerblades or your wheels of choice around the park, or find your feet on the Bellefields and Heritage Trails looping through a variety of diverse habitats with a peek at some history. You may find canoers and kayakers along the channels, if you want to join them check out some rentals from the nearby Entai Beach Park, and migrate your way to the Slough!

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Walk, Hike, Watersports- Kayak
  • Drive time: 7 minutes
  • Location/Directions: 2102 Bellevue Way SE, Bellevue, WA 98004

12. Luther Burbank

With 3 miles of trails to explore on the waterfront, Luther Burbank is the perfect place to unwind with family or pets. Beaches and forests are accessible to be enjoyed by many.

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Walk
  • Drive time: 10 minutes
  • Directions: 8339-8399 SE 24th St, Mercer Island, WA 98040

13. Rock Climbing at Vertical World (Redmond)

Discover bouldering and top rope climbing right in Redmond. Fill out the waiver before you arrive to get right to climbing.

  • Cost: $16 daily rate. Gear rentals- Shoes $5 Harness $3 Chalk $3
  • Activities: Rock climbing
  • Drive time: 18 minutes
  • Directions: 15036 NE 95th St, Redmond, WA 98052

Issaquah Alps

While there are dozens of trails and activities you can explore in the region known as the Issaquah Alps, made up of three large mountains, Cougar and the surrounding area that house thousands of acres to explore!

14. Margaret’s Way hike

A new trail on the west of Squak Mountain- the smallest of the Issaquah Alps range, enjoy a more challenging 5.5 mi round trip hike with a good amount of elevation gain through beautiful forests.

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Hike
  • Drive time: 14 minutes
  • Location/Directions: 125 W Sunset Way, Issaquah, WA 98027

15. Tour the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery

Learn about the staple fish of the Pacific Northwest! At the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery in the fall, salmon are returning to their birth grounds from the ocean. Learn about the salmon life cycle and the variety that pass through our backyard! The hatchery also houses beautiful flora and a native plant garden, even if there were no salmon to see, this is a beautiful place to walk around!

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Learn, walk
  • Drive time: 14 minutes
  • Location/Directions: 125 W Sunset Way, Issaquah, WA 98027

16. Hazel Wolf Wetlands

Hike a small unknown loop in this wetland where you will see a variety of ecosystems. This is accessible to many of various experiences outdoors and sitting in Sammamish.

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Hike
  • Drive time: 24 minutes
  • Location/Directions: 47.5991, -122.0083

17. Coal Creek Falls

Named by the history of coal mining occurring for over 100 years, discover this 28-foot mossy waterfall is a nice trek through a rich forest.

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Hike
  • Drive time: 15 minutes
  • Location/Directions: 47.5348, -122.1288

18. Big Tree Ridge

A short hike, enjoy the forests and views you will see off of Big Tree Ridge, easy to add on extra miles if you have a map handy, you will enjoy this small hike on Cougar Mountain.

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Hike
  • Drive time: 10 minutes
  • Location/Directions: 47.5474, -122.0713

19. Lake Sammamish State Park

Near downtown Issaquah explore the variety of paths in the lowlands where you will find rivers and trails leading to the lake shore.

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Hike, walk, swim.
  • Drive time: 10 minutes
  • Location/Directions: 47.5474, -122.0713

20. Saint Edward State Park

316 acres of second-growth forest to explore with a variety of trails to choose from, you will have a great time taking in this patch of land Northwest of Kirkland.

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Hike
  • Drive time: 30 minutes
  • Location/Directions: Perimeter Trail, Kenmore, WA 98028

Into the Mountains

Traveling just 30 minutes into the mountains will just scratch the surface of all the things you can explore off the I-90 corridor!

21. Rattlesnake Mountain

Rattlesnake Ledge is a well-loved adventure, escape the crowds and find yourself on a longer trail, exploring the 10.9 mile trail reaching from Snoqualmie point down to Rattlesnake Lake. See if you can have someone drop you off at one point and pick you up at the other, or bring a friend and park either car at the two trailheads. A nice long hike with a steady and gradual elevation, you can explore the forest through the trail that crosses logging roads with little breaks of forest to take in some spectacular views. Enjoy this hike on a hot day, keeping cool in the shade of the dense forest and finish your hike with a swim in the cool Rattlesnake Lake.

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Hike, swim
  • Drive time: 20 minutes
  • Location/Directions: Snoqualmie Point Park, 37580 Winery Road, Snoqualmie, WA 98065

22. Snoqualmie Falls

A short and easy hike that is accessible to everyone, start above and descend to the same level as the great Snoqualmie Falls. A quick escape from the city and surrounded by nature, end at a boardwalk where you can view the falls and river safely.

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Hike, swim
  • Drive time: 29 minutes
  • Location/Directions: 6501 Railroad Ave, Snoqualmie, WA 98065

23. Moncton Ghost Town

Circumnavigate Rattlesnake Lake, with high water levels the remains of this town abandoned just over 100 years ago may be difficult to spot, but look for the small signs that lay on this enjoyable stroll through beautiful scenery. On a hot day, find a good spot to cool down in the chilly waters of Rattlesnake.

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Hike, swim
  • Drive time: 20 minutes
  • Location/Directions: Snoqualmie Point Park, 37580 Winery Road, Snoqualmie, WA 98065

24. Little Si, Boulder Loop

Little Si is a popular hiking trail, with fantastic views of the forest surrounding this smaller peak. At less than 5 miles roundtrip for Little Si, tack on a couple more miles and build your challenge by looping the Boulder trail, find massive moss-covered rocks deposited by the glacier that carved the separation between the peak you just finished and its big sister, Mount Si.

  • Cost:
  • Activities: HikeLocation/Directions: 47.4878, -121.7563

25. Dirty Harry’s Balcony

A pleasant trail delicately shaded by a variety of trees building forest, on Dirty Harry’s you’ll find an awesome amount of artifacts lying along the trail showing a small view into the rich history of Washington’s mountains, make sure to not disturb these artifacts so that others can enjoy! This rocky dry-river bed like trail will intertwine with a small creek, and you’ll find yourself reaching the balcony, make sure to check out this hike of WTA to get parking directions and how to find the trail!

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Hike
  • Drive time: 30 minutes
  • Location/Directions: SE Homestead Valley Rd, North Bend, WA 98045 (47.4338, -121.6325)

26. Kamikaze Falls

Work yourself on this moderate hike, with breaks in and out of the tree cover, at 3 miles you will find yourself at your destination, the cascading waterfall known as both Kamikaze Falls and Teneriffe Falls.

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Hike
  • Drive time: 30 minutes
  • Location/Directions: 48100-48216 SE Mt Si Rd, North Bend, WA 98045 (47.4862, -121.6995)

27. Twin Falls

A short hike with large rewards, find a variety of native plants on the forest floor and lining the trail, leading to this beautiful 70 foot waterfall and flowing river nestled in the forest near North Bend.

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Hike
  • Drive time: 30 minutes
  • Location/Directions: (47.4420, -121.6761)

28. John Wayne Trail

Starting near Rattlesnake Lake, you can discover the John Wayne Trail, extending 253 miles, you can walk or bike along this trail for however long you want. Enjoy beautiful views on this wide and well-used trail!

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Hike, Bike
  • Drive time: 30 minutes
  • Location/Directions: (47.4341, -121.7707)

29. Tolt Macdonald Park

A 574-acre park is a campground but as it sits by a river serves as a wonderful place to enjoy the river and scenery that surround the campground, including a beautiful suspension bridge that will cross you over the Snoqualmie River.

  • Cost:
  • Activities: Walk, Hike
  • Drive time: 30 minutes
  • Location/Directions: 31020 NE 40th Street, Carnation, WA 98014

Anywhere

30. Geocaching

Discover geocaching by downloading the free app on your phone and seeing which treasures you can find! If you are on a hike pull out the app to add an extra adventure to your trail or walk through a park!

Last Updated April 3, 2019