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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Ridge Trail on Whidbey Island is a winter marvel

The Ridge Trail at Ebey's Landing National Historical Reserve offers beautiful views of the Salish Sea. (John Nelson)
The Ridge Trail at Ebey's Landing National Historical Reserve offers beautiful views of the Salish Sea. (John Nelson)

Some hikes can be even better in the winter than in the summer.

The Ridge Trail at Ebey's Landing National Historical Reserve on Whidbey Island in Washington is a case in point.

It's a beautiful hike anytime -- with big views from a ridgeline overlooking the Salish Sea. But on a sunny day in winter, this trail is truly magical.

The south-facing, broad views are all in the sunshine, offering the kind of sun exposure that Northwesterners crave in December. Once you reach the end of the bluff, you descend to a remote beach, again south-facing, where the sun warms the island's bluffs and reflects off the water.

It's not California-warm, but it's about the best place in Washington for a beautiful day at the beach in December.



John Nelson is a freelance writer.