Getting Kids Out Into Nature

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Book Review: Day Hiking Olympic Peninsula, 2nd Edition, by Craig Romano

mountaineers books, review, craig romano
Day Hiking Olympic Peninsula Cover

Mysterious, deep, ancient forests. Coastal beaches and headlands. Alpine meadows with far-reaching views. Lakes and rivers, wetlands and surf. The Olympic Peninsula has a diverse range of habitats and areas to explore. You can research your next adventure to this wild corner of the country by using Craig Romano’s book, Day Hiking: Olympic Peninsula. This is the Second Edition, with corrections and updates as conditions have changed.

Families will find a lot of choices to explore in this book. Many hikes are short and sweet, and suitable for even the youngest hikers. Some hikes even take place on boardwalks, such as the Willapa National Wildlife Refuge Salmon Art Trail (Hike #8.) Each hike has an overall rating for how great the hike is (how the views are, how much bang for your buck, how beautiful it is) and another rating for how difficult it is. Craig points out trails that are specifically kid-friendly, and even where dogs are allowed or not allowed. You’ll find the driving directions are accurate and straightforward.

I haven’t explored very many part of the Olympic Peninsula yet, so I have a long list of spots I want to get to. This book is going to be an invaluable planning aid as I put together trips for next summer for our family. We’ve never been to the Staircase area, Wynoochee Lake, Hamma Hamma or Lena Lake, or much of the rugged coastline. I aim to remedy that next year; this book will be an important companion as we plan and explore. I know I’ll get up-to-date information about passes and permits, as well as which maps I need to buy and which trails are within our capabilities.


Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher for the purposes of review. All opinions are my own.

Urban Trails: Kitsap by Craig Romano – Book Review

Many of you are familiar with Craig Romano, the prolific and energetic guidebook writer for Washington State. We use his books all the time to plan our hikes to wild and scenic locations. But it’s not always easy to get out to true wilderness. With iffy weather, packed schedules, family illnesses – sometimes we need…Continue Reading

Hiking the Pacific Crest Trail : Washington, by Tami Asars, Book Review

  When I was younger, my biggest dream in life was to hike the Pacific Crest Trail. I was never able to figure out how to tackle that audacious goal, and life moved on, and I set that dream aside. But now Tami Asars has come out with a unique new book about how to…Continue Reading

Book Review: 100 Classic Hikes: Washington by Craig Romano

My bookshelf has two rows of various hiking guides, but recently a new guide came out that will have a prominent spot in the first row. Craig Romano has rewritten and updated Harvey Manning and Ira Spring’s original 100 Classic Hikes in Washington book from 1998, including some of the initial hikes, but adding some new…Continue Reading

National Parks Week 2016, and Review of National Geographic Guides

April 16-24, 2016 has been designated National Parks Week. This national event is a time to focus on and celebrate all that the National Parks have to offer us. During this week, admission is free to all parks, and special events are planned at many sites. The Park Service has created a special website for this…Continue Reading

Day Hiking: Mount St. Helens, Book Review and Interview

Mount St. Helens has held a special place in the soul of the Pacific Northwest since its eruptions in the 1980s. Many of us parents are old enough to remember following the saga on the news, and remember where we were on the day of the big eruption. We find it fascinating to visit this…Continue Reading

Exploring Nature with Wonder

Many years ago, Before Kids, I worked as an Environmental Educator for a local parks department.  We worked at the beaches and in a forested park, leading groups of children and adults, spring through fall, on field trips and nature discovery programs.  We would have several activities to guide children to learn more about the…Continue Reading

Craig Romano Talk and Book Signing

This evening I had the pleasure to attend a talk at the Edmonds Library by Craig Romano.  He spoke about hiking in Snohomish County.  He started with local walks and moved outward to some of the most spectacular scenery in the state and country.  Craig is an energetic, funny, and informational speaker.  He showed beautiful…Continue Reading

Exploring Nature Article in ParentMap

I’ve got another article up in the ParentMap online edition.  It’s chock full of great ideas for getting outside when you don’t have a ton of time.  You’ll even see a few photos of my own kids mixed in. There is so much you can do even if you can’t take time for a day…Continue Reading

Bird Note Podcasts

When we go on long drives, we bring a lot of things along for the kids to do – coloring, books, stuffed animals, paper and pencils.  We also like listening to podcasts to pass the time. One of our favorites is Bird Note, a local production on one of our NPR stations.  Each 2-minute show…Continue Reading