BACKPACKING -- With the snow still a few weeks from clearing off mountain trails, early season backpackers don't have to wait to hit the trail for multi-day trips. The Inland Northwest has a good assortment of trails that some hikers have been enjoying since March.
Here's my list of favorite early-season backpacking treks:
- Hells Canyon of the Snake River, from Pittsburg Landing upstream past Kirkwood Ranch to Hells Canyon Dam.
- Wenaha River out of Troy, Oreg.
- Rapid River out of Riggins, Idaho.
- Selway River upstream from Lowell, Idaho, to Moose Creek.
- Lake Chelan Shoreline Trail to Stehekin.
- Ancient Lakes near Quincy, WA (best March through May).