Welcome to the Eastside Hikers and Fast Walkers! While this is mainly a hiking and walking group, we occasionally post other fitness activities such as biking or kayaking. Most of our events are on the eastside, including (but not limited to) Bellevue, Kirkland, Redmond, Woodinville, Sammamish, Issaquah and Mercer Island. Every once in a while we will post an event in Seattle or elsewhere. We like nature trails but we also do some urban walks. Some of our routes are sanctioned Volkssport walks, but most are not. Some of us will bring our canine friends from time to time.
This group usually walks at a fairly brisk fitness pace of about 3.5 miles per hour. Our usual walking distance is about 6-7 miles or 10K, which takes about two hours. Hikes with more elevation gain will take longer, though the distance is usually less. Please read the event descriptions carefully and make sure the distance and difficulty is a good fit for you. Know your own limits and put safety first. If you walk slower than the group, make sure you know the route and try to find a similar-paced walking partner. We don't want to leave anyone behind. We do not provide maps for most of our routes.
We walk year-round, regardless of the weather. Events will only be cancelled in extreme circumstances. It's best to dress in layers and be prepared for any changes in conditions. Some of us like to wear a small backpack to keep a water bottle and extra layers handy -- raincoat, umbrella, gloves, hats, sunglasses, etc. Make sure your shoes are comfortable!
Many people associate "5K" and "10K" with a fundraising or racing event. In this group, it simply refers to the distance of the walk. We are not a competitive or "learn to run" group. All events are free (no fundraising required) unless otherwise noted. We will try to let everyone know the approximate distance and level of difficulty (i.e. flat, hilly, rugged terraiin, etc.) when we post the events. Some of our walks may be sanctioned "Volkssport" walks, which anyone can join for free, but all walkers must register and sign a waiver. Donations are appreciated. If you do have Volkssport books that you want to stamp then it usually costs about $3 per walk. Again, we will let you know if we are doing a Volkswalk so that those of you participating can bring your books and money.
Please click on the "Pages" tab for more details about this group. Also check out the Message Board under the Discussions tab. Feel free to make suggestions if you have any ideas for this group. We are always looking for more leaders.
I look forward to seeing you out on the trails. We live in a spectacular place for experiencing the outdoors with our mild climate and tremendous natural beauty. Let's go out and enjoy it!