5 Ways to Celebrate Sunshine in Seattle


A mysterious orb shines in the sky, bringing warmth and happiness to residents throughout the Pacific Northwest. Here comes the sun, Seattle. After months of clouds and drizzle, months of trying our darndest to enjoy the indoors, spring has finally sprung. Most of us have our favorite outdoor activities, but unexpected sunlight combined with endless options can paralyze our decision-making abilities. No worries, we've got you covered. So break out those fixie bikes and hipster shades. It's time to go outside.

Biking
Seattleites love cycling on sunny days. Nothing beats the sheer joy of speeding past traffic-stalled cars with the wind in your face. Cruising the wonderful Burke-Gilman Trail along the shores of lakes Washington and Union is a Seattle ride of passage. Need a bike? Hop on one of the green Pronto Cycle Share bikes at University of Washington and throughout the city. A 24-hour pass is just $8.

Hiking
From a walk in the park to awe-inspiring, yet oddly-named trails — Seattle's got you covered. Spring and summer are excellent for hiking here because as winter snow melts in the mountains, the most pristine of alpine trails become accessible. Try the ever-popular Mount Si, or head into the North Cascade for trails and ales.

Sailing
With its annual Seafair Festival and a variety of water-centric activities, Seattle is a sailor's (wet) dream. Watch or participate in Seattle's Duck Dodge sailboat races at Lake Union. These races first took sail in 1974 and have become a Seattle spring-summer tradition. Seattle Sailing Club is an excellent resource for beginner lessons and information. Put the "sea" in Seattle by joining one of their coastal cruising classes on Puget Sound.

Camping
Ahh, camping. There's nothing quite like the bittersweet combination of campfire s'mores and mosquito bites. Tent season officially falls between Memorial Day and Labor Day weekends for most campgrounds in Washington; make your reservations now for camping at Washington State Parks. Head up to Camano Island State Park for a weekend of Olympic Mountain views across Puget Sound.

Drinking (outdoors)
Seattle has some solid options when it comes to drinking outside. From the humble beer garden to the soaring rooftop bar — there's something for everyone. Fremont Brewing's recently expanded beer garden is always a hot spot when the sun's out. Cool off with their tasty Summer Ale or Wandering Wheat. Bridging the gap between brewery beer garden and swanky high-rise, Rooftop Brewing offers a no-frills outdoor sipping experience. Their Glorious Basker, a blood-orange wheat beer, is always refreshing while basking in the glory of the Seattle sun. If you'd rather sip rooftop cocktails, try Frolik Kitchen. Think hip, modern, sleek, and...ping pong.

Brandon Fralic is a Bellingham-based freelance writer. With a focus on the outdoors, travel, and craft beer, he contributes to a handful of publications including Washington Trails, Whatcom Talk, and Outdoor Project.