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Marshall put hiking steps ahead

Louise Marshall, a Northwest pioneer of publicizing hiking opportunities and trail preservation and founder of the Washington Trails Association, died Aug. 24 at her Lynnwood home. She was 90.

Marshall authored the first comprehensive Northwest hiking book in 1966, “100 Hikes in Western Washington,” which was the forerunner of the popular “100 Hikes” series published by The Mountaineers-Books. She created the first Northwest hiking magazine, Signpost, still published today under the title Washington Trails.

Also in 1966, Marshall founded the Washington Trails Association (WTA), and she co-founded the American Hiking Society in 1976.

She was REI’s first female board member and served for 18 years.

Marshall organized several protests, including one that attracted Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas and helped prevent an open pit copper mine near Image Lake in what is now the Glacier Peak Wilderness.

She loved backpacking on the Pacific Crest Trail so much that she took on the role as director of the Pacific Crest Trail Association when she was in her seventies.

A few months ago, when asked by Washington Trails Association representatives what words of wisdom she wants to pass on to future generations of hikers, Marshall said, “Get organized. Most hikers are not joiners, but we need to be united behind a movement to be heard.”

Memorial gifts may be made to the Washington Trails Association, 2019 Third Ave, Suite 100, Seattle, WA 98101.


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