1. Climbing Rock Walls

    The most popular indoor location for rock climbers is Recreational Equipment Incorporated (REI, which has a huge practice wall in the atrium of their flagship store on Eastlake Avenue. Stone Gardens also offers classes and practice walls for members and walk-ins.

    Stone Gardens

    • 2839 NW Market

    • 206 781 9828

    • Adult $14; student $13; under 18 $9; rental equipment extra

    Rock climbing walls, Stone Gardens
  2. Kayaking

    Lake Union is the most convenient point, being so close to downtown and its Ship Canal links to Lake Washington and Shilshole. When there’s no wind, the currents are barely an issue even for novices. More adventurous river-runners find their rapid transit in challenging whitewater courses closer to the mountains.

    Sea kayaks, Lake Union
  3. Skiing & Snowboarding

    Seattleites wait anxiously for the first large snowfall that carpets ski runs in the Cascades. Crystal Mountain, Alpental, Snoqualmie Pass, and Stevens Pass attract faithful downhill and crosscountry skiers, and boarders who have honed their skills on the area’s famously challenging snow conditions.

  4. Burke-Gilman Trail

    The legacy of two of Seattle’s earliest railroad men, Judge Thomas Burke and Daniel Gilman, this disused railroad track is a paved trail  that stretches for about 22 miles (35 km) from the western edge of Fremont to the north end of Lake Washington. Cyclists and pedestrians can enjoy the scenic beauty of key sights such as GasWorks Park and Magnuson Park at Sand Point.

  5. Colman Pool

    An alternative to cold, inhospitable Puget Sound is a dip in Colman Pool. It uses heated and filtered saltwater drawn from Puget Sound, which it overlooks from its convenient beach location within Lincoln Park.

    • 8603 Fauntleroy Way SW

    • Adult $3.75, child/senior $2.75

  6. Highland Ice Arena

    There’s only one open-all-year ice rink that serves Seattle. It entertains legions of loyal customers including graceful figure skaters, daredevil hockey skaters, and families with young children just starting to learn the ropes.

    • 18005 Aurora Ave N

    • 206 546 2431

    • Adult/teen (13–64) $6; child/senior (6–12, 65+) $5.50

  7. Snowshoe Treks

    A new trend in wintertime sports is snowshoeing, an ancient method of walking on or through the white stuff. The National Park Service and local outfitters offer a series of guided walks. Beginners should start with an experienced professional guide to lead the outing.

  8. Scuba Diving

    For an adventurous sport opt for scuba diving in Puget Sound to discover undersea creatures such as wolf eels, octopus, sea stars, and urchins with amazing ranges of size and color. Divers embark solo or as part of chartered excursions to take advantage of the coastline that’s never victim to heavy damage or dangerous currents from Pacific Ocean storms.

  9. Windsurfing

    For one of the country’s premier windsurfing meccas, you’ll have to go to Hood River, Oregon, in the Columbia River Gorge. If extreme sports are not your style, Seattle has two prime locations for all who want to let the wind sweep them away — along the west shores of Lake Washington, between Magnuson Beach and Seward Park; and at Golden Gardens Park where Shilshole Bay meets Puget Sound.

  10. Cycling Tolt-MacDonald Park & Campground

    Many of Seattle’s in-city parks have decent single tracks for casual-mountain biking. But for intermediate-level cyclists looking for small challenges in a great riverside setting, head east across Lake Washington for Carnation, in the Snoqualmie River valley, east of Redmond.

    • 31020 NE 4th St

    A cyclist on Alki Beach

Top 10 Places to Rent Gear

  1. REI

    This store helped define Seattle as an outdoor recreation mecca.

    • 222 Yale Ave N

    • 206 223 1944

  2. Marmot Mountain Works

    Stocks supplies for camping, skiing, and rock climbing.

    • 827 Bellevue Way NE, Bellevue

    • 425 453 1515

  3. Feathered Friends

    Has a great selection of climbing gear.

    • 119 Yale Ave N

    • 206 292 2210

  4. Agua Verde Café & Paddle Club

    Rent a kayak or dine on great Mexican food.

    • 1303 NE Boat St

    • 206 545 8570

  5. Moss Bay Rowing & Kayaking Center

    Offers a variety of kayaks and rowboats.

    • 1001 Fairview Ave N

    • 206 682 2031

  6. Gregg’s Greenlake Cycles

    Hire ride bikes or inline skates here.

    • 7007 Woodlawn Ave NE

    • 206 523 1822

  7. Alki Crab & Fish

    Boat and kayak rentals and reasonable seafood on offer.

    • 1660 Harbor Ave SW

    • 206 938 0975

  8. Windworks Sailing Center

    Rent bareboats, or take sailing lessons.

    • 7001 Seaview Ave NW

    • 206 784 9386

  9. Northwest Outdoor Center

    Rent kayaks or paddle along the Canal.

    • 2100 Westlake Ave N

    • 206 281 9694

  10. Center for Wooden Boats

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