The Ultimate Trail to Tavern 3-Day Weekend in Seattle

 

It’s hard to say what Seattleites love more: getting outside or drinking locally crafted beer. Luckily, in this Trail to Tavern® city, you don’t have to choose just one. With more than 40 breweries and tons of ways to get outside (hiking, trail running, cycling, and paddle boarding, to name a few), Seattle certainly has plenty of opportunities to squeeze in visits to both trails and taverns. Here’s our guide for how to make the most of your three-day weekend in the Emerald City.

Day One

Discovery Park is the largest public park in the city. Samantha LarsonDiscovery Park is the largest public park in the city. Samantha Larson.

Start your first day with a lap around one of Seattle’s most popular spots: Discovery Park. Whether you are driving up I-5 or coming in from the airport, take a detour to stop at Cherry Street Coffee House. There are 10 locations around Seattle, and each one has a unique store design. Grab a coffee or tea and a bagel (or housemade quiche!) and continue to the largest park in the city, covering more than 500 acres on a bluff overlooking the Puget Sound.

The 2.8-mile Discovery Park Loop (there’s also a four-mile option) weaves through forests and meadows, past sea cliffs and sandy beaches, while offering stellar views of Mount Rainier, the Olympic Mountains, and Puget Sound. With steep hills that are sure to get your heart pumping, running through Discovery Park is an equally delicious way to wake up as sipping on a handcrafted latte—and here in Seattle, that’s saying something.

If you’ve got some energy left, stop by for a quick session at Vertical World, America’s first climbing gym, which is about a mile to the east. Bring a towel, and you’ll be able to take a hot shower here before getting on with your day, too.

Grab a flight at the Pike Brewing Company.Grab a flight at the Pike Brewing Company. +Russ

From here, make your way downtown for lunch at another classic Seattle site: Pike’s Place Market. Jump in the long line to get a frappuccino from the original Starbucks and grab a sandwich, falafel, or hom bow from one of the outdoor food vendors. Don’t miss the famous fish throwing spectacle, then head over to the Pike Brewing Company for the 3 pm tour and tasting, where you’ll learn about the art of brewing and try out some samples. This family-owned establishment was founded in 1989 by Charles and Rose Ann Finkel, who dedicated themselves to brewing after falling in love with beer while traveling in Europe. From Belgian lambics to English ales, they wanted to bring these flavors back to the Pacific Northwest. The brewery really took off when they concocted the Pike IPA in 1990, which is still one of their most popular drinks.

After a tasting at Pike, spend some time exploring the market, the waterfront, and maybe take a ride or two on Seattle’s Great Wheel for picturesque views of the city and the Puget Sound.

Finish the night with dinner back at Pike’s Place Market at one of Seattle’s newest breweries, the Old Stove Brewing Co. Just because the brewery is the new kid in town, don’t think that Scott Barron, the head brewer, is a greenhorn: he came to Old Stove after stints at three other local breweries. If you like a bold tasting beer, try the Touch Too Much IPA (though we think it’s just the right amount of hops), or the Streaker Citra Ale for something a little lighter and brighter. Pair either option with a Fresh Dip sandwich and you’ll be set.

** Where to Stay**

Get some sleep in a uniquely Seattle abode by renting a houseboat or a sailboat on Airbnb. If you would rather stay on dry land, Hotel Max is a solid alternative—and they offer free craft beer during happy hour (what more could you ask for?).

Day Two

The route to Colchuck Lake makes for a wonderful day hike.The route to Colchuck Lake makes for a wonderful day hike. laffertyryan

For day two, get out of the city and into the wilderness by taking a trip to Leavenworth, a Bavarian-themed village nestled in the Central Cascades. But don’t be fooled by this quirky tourist town—it’s the gateway to some of Washington’s best outdoor adventures. At 2.5 hours away, it’s a bit of a drive from Seattle, but well worth it. Get an early start and book it to Pioneer Coffee Roasting Company along I-90 in North Bend for breakfast and cup of joe before continuing on.

Since you’ll likely want to eat lunch on-the-go, swing by family-owned Good Mood Food once you get to Leavenworth for snacks and a sandwich, and then let the adventure begin.

The Enchantments have been called an alpine paradise, and as soon as you find yourself surrounded by granite boulders and blue alpine lakes (maybe even mountain goats!), you’ll understand why. You could spend a lifetime exploring the area, but the eight-mile out-and-back hike to Colchuck Lake is a great option if you only have a day. You’ll hike through the forest and across several streams before tackling a series of switchbacks. After more than 2,000 feet of elevation gain, you’ll be rewarded with spectacular views of Dragontail Peak, Colchuck Peak, and the Colchuck Glacier.

Leavenworth is also home to one of the best climbing areas in the state, with a high concentration of sweet boulder problems, trad routes, and sport climbs. The Washington Climbers Coalition is an excellent resource for information on the climbing here.

After a day filled with adventure, stop by Leavenworth’s Icicle Brewing Company for a bite to eat and a drink before hitting the road. Try their Colchuck Raspberry Wheat, fermented with Willamette Valley raspberries, with a turkey sandwich or salad.

Once you get back to Seattle, celebrate the day with a cold one (or two!) from Two Beers Brewing Company in Seattle’s Industrial District. After spending several years perfecting the art of homebrewing from his kitchen, Joel VandenBrink decided to take the craft even further and founded the company in 2007. The brewery now produces almost 6,000 barrels every year. The Day Hike, a light and crisp lemony summer session ale, is the perfect way to top off the day’s activities.

Day Three

The Burke-Gilman Trail is part of 90 miles of biking trails in Seattle.The Burke-Gilman Trail is part of 90 miles of biking trails in Seattle. Seattle Parks

Ease into day three with brunch in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood. A good place to start is with a Belgian-style street waffle with sweet or savory toppings from Sweet Iron Waffles or a traditional Syrian breakfast at Mamnoon. Then grab a bike from a local rental shop and head north for a leisurely ride along the Burke-Gilman Trail, a paved bike path that hugs the shores of Lake Washington, Lake Union, and the Ship Canal. The greenery lining the trail is, in part, thanks to the tree-planting efforts of organizations like the local conservation group Forterra.

Check out the salmon ladder at the Ballard Locks as you ride to the end of the Burke to Golden Gardens, a beach on Puget Sound with magnificent views of the Olympic Mountains on a clear day. Rent a paddleboard or kayak and take the easy, two-mile trip out to the Discovery Park Lighthouse. (Keep your eyes peeled for jellyfish below and seals frolicking in the water around you!)

The Burke also offers excellent access to some of the best breweries in town, so get ready for a little brewery hopping on the return trip as you wrap up your weekend in Seattle. Stoup Brewing is the product of a scientist and self-proclaimed beer geek, with a goal to brew the best beer scientifically possible. Just a block away is Reuben’s Brews, whose beers have won awards both nationally and internationally. If you order a pie from Zeeks or Ballard Pizza, you will not only get a discount, but you can also take it into Reuben’s with you.

The family-owned Maritime Pacific Brewing Company’s seafaring theme and traditional recipes are a hat-tip to the Ballard neighborhood’s roots as a fishing town. Try the Old Seattle Lager, made with Cascade hops, or the Flagship Red, both available year round. And just a little farther away is Hale’s Ales Brewery & Pub and the Fremont Brewing Company.

Did we mention that Seattle has a lot of breweries?

But don’t worry about hitting them all in this trip—you need a reason to start planning your next visit, right?

Originally written by RootsRated for Toad&Co.

Featured image provided by David Herrera

Modern Travel: Chile & Argentina – WIN THIS TRIP!

 

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Picture this: You and a friend hiking through the Andes, kicking back in glacial lakes, dancing the night away in Buenos Aires… Well that could become a reality because we’re kicking off our new Modern Travel Collection by sending two people to Chile & Argentina for 13-days of awesome. Oh, and we’ll toss in a new Toad&Co Modern Travel wardrobe for the trip too – because let’s face it, the days of the safari costume are over! Enter our Modern Travel Trip Sweepstakes NOW and you could be wandering the streets of Santiago in no time.

So why Chile & Argentina? Misty mountain ranges, crashing seasides, romantic rolling hills, unruly wildlife, pulsing cantinas… The Argentinians call it buena onda, or “good vibes”. We call it adventure.

WHAT TO DO IN CHILE & ARGENTINA

Pisco Sours: While the Peruvians will claim this cocktail as their own, Chileans are known for knocking back their signature spirit: the Pisco Sour. A mix of Pisco (a brandy distilled from grapes in the winemaking region of Chile) and fresh lime juice with a dash of simple syrup and an egg white for fizz, the Pisco Sour will put some hair on your chest. Santiago, the buzzing capital of Chile, slings a mean Picso since pride is on the line. Wander from barrio to barrio and try the variations on the classic cocktail.

Villarrica Volcano: Adrenaline junkies and thrill seekers will delight in Chile’s adventure capital, Pucon, in central Chile. World class mountain biking, whitewater rafting, hiking, climbing, horse riding – whatever gets your blood pumping – it’s all in Pucon and it all comes with a killer view of smouldering Volcán Villarrica. Known locally as Rucapillán, it’s nickname is a Mapuche word meaning “House of the Pilán” or “House of the Spirit,” and it certainly lives up to it’s name. Villarrica is one of Chile’s most active volcanoes and the top is permanently covered by snow and giant glaciers. Pack a few layers and get spirited away.

Lanin National Park: After a few days traipsing the volcano, journey over the mighty Andes into Argentina. Drop by the country’s picturesque Lake District for some much needed R n’ R and a dip in one of its 24 glacial lakes. Flowing from lake to lake are hundreds of rivers and creeks bursting with salmon and trout. Hike amongst the grand Argentinian forests to the Mapuche reserves – home to the indigenous people who are known for their hospitality and stunning craftsmanship. And in case you’re missing the rumble of a volcano, Lanin Volcano is always there when you when you need it – all 3,776 meters of it.

Bariloche chocolates: Belgium, Switzerland, and Bariloche: The chocolate trifecta. Home to some of the world’s best chocolatiers, Bariloche is a sleepy mountain town with quaint, chalet-style wooden architecture and a serious sweet tooth. Back in the1800’s, German and Austrian immigrants came to Argentina looking for new opportunity and brought their time-honored recipes. Pop into the chocolate shops on Mitre Street, Bariloche’s main thoroughfare, for some of the most delicious chocolate you will ever try.

Empanadas: Is there anything better than buttery, flakey pastry stuffed with goodies and eaten on the fly? Baked, fried, stuffed with meats and cheese, veggies or fruits, drizzled with honey or dipped in salsa – you really can’t go wrong with an Argentinian empanada. And though each region has it’s own take on the snack, Buenos Aires is the unquestionable heartland of empanadas strictly based on the sheer number of empanada shops in the city. Sample versions from the Tucuman Province (big and fried in oil), Salta Province (small and baked in clay ovens), Patagonia (seafood and lamb fillings), or the spicy empanadas of the Jujuy region. Whatever your preference, good luck stopping once you’ve started!

WHAT TO WEAR IN CHILE & ARGENTINA

Boarding Pass ShortPacked for any adventure, these shorts are up for anything: exploring the barrios, cruising the playas and scrambling around in the Andes. They’re styled like classic walking shorts but our performance Travel Twill fabric stretches, keeps you cool, blocks the sun (excellent UPF 40+), dries fast, and repels dirt and salsa stains.

Swifty TankIn a word, the Swifty is smokin’. It wicks moisture and fends off UV rays with a dynamite fabric blend that feels soft as cotton (but it’s actually a rockin’ blend of polyester and green-tech Tencel®). Tiny stripes and curving seams boost the sizzle factor. And Swifty’s hidden zip pocket and generous shoulder coverage means you won’t lose your room key or show your bra straps when you’re hiking up a volcano.

Whirlwind DressAfter two days in Buenos Aires, your hips break loose and you start to walk like the locals do. Blame it on the music, the sunshine and this dress. Super-simple and free flowing, the Whirlwind Dress is made of two layers of cool, quick-dry fabric that handles heat, travel and water with ease. With an excellent 40+ UPF rating to block the burn and a super-secret stash pocket in between layers, the Whirlwind will have you walking to a new beat from sun up to sun down.

OnRush PoloGood looking, refined and ready for action. No, we’re not talking about the Argentine gauchos – we’re describing the Onrush polo. Our Onrush is designed for those who are ready to wrangle the day. Perfect for travel, a day on the trails, city cruising or a sea salt happy hour, the polyester drirelease® and organic cotton knit wicks moisture and keeps you dry and looking muy bien all day long.

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ENTER NOW! Sweepstakes ends 4/14/2015