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Best Spring Hikes in the Seattle Area for Kids and Families

Kid-friendly trails with indoor learning spots that are perfect for cool spring days

Published on: March 07, 2023

Best Spring Hikes in the Seattle Area for Kids and Families

A sign asks people to protect this source of drinking water for the Seattle area. Credit: Luke McGuff/Flickr CC

Cedar River Watershed, North Bend

My kids have fond memories of puddle-stomping the trail at the wonderful Cedar River Watershed, about 45 minutes east of Seattle, and watching ospreys dive for fish in the lake. Kids love the musical rain drums here, too.

Favorite trails: Start out with a stroll. Park your car at Rattlesnake Lake and walk the gentle gravel path a half-mile up to the Cedar River Watershed Education Center.

Indoor options: Inside the education center, kids can learn about the water cycle by popping ping-pong balls into a fabulous system of pipes, talking to the naturalists or touching some fascinating items collected from nature. Check out one of the center’s backpacks stocked with bug-catching tools, binoculars, field guides and other activities for a quick walk around the area. The education center is open, but hours are slim: It's currently open Thursday–Friday, noon–5 p.m., and Saturday, 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Check the website for status updates, hours and more information. Note that some of the parking spaces near Rattlesnake Lake may require a Discover Pass.

Extras: If the weather is nicer, you can connect with trails up to Rattlesnake Ledge (for older kids and adults) or along the Palouse to Cascades Trail (formerly called the Iron Horse Trail).

Next stop: trails of discovery

Image credit: Luke McGuff/Flickr CC

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