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Stay Safe on Our Trails

hiker pnw

Interim Chief Paula Schwan of the Issaquah Police Department (IPD) provides helpful information and tips on how you can stay safe while hiking and biking on our local trails.

For hikers

  • Know your limits, including experience level, weight of my gear, distance, and elevation of the trail.
  • Plan your hike: Pick the trail in advance and let someone know where you’re going. Have an emergency plan. Will you have cell service? Check the weather for your hike in advance and plan accordingly.
  • What to bring: Food and water (or be able to treat water from the trail), sturdy shoes, extra socks (wool or synthetic), bug spray, moleskin for blisters, and a locator beacon.
  • Hike smart: The slowest hiker should set the pace. Track your time and distance, yield to uphill hikers, take breaks as needed, eat snacks, watch your step, stay clear of rapid waters or slippery slopes, spray for mosquitos, check for ticks, wear a hat, and watch for wildlife.

For bikers

  • Wear a helmet
  • Stay visible with bike lights and bright clothing
  • Go with traffic flow (ride on same side and direction of vehicles)
  • Obey all traffic laws
  • Yield to traffic when appropriate
  • Be predictable
  • Always stay alert
  • Look before turning
  • Watch for parked cars
  • Stay alert for obstacles in the road and on the trail

IPD does not usually patrol our local trails unless they receive a report (the city recently hired a park ranger who will do those patrols). If you are concerned about personal safety on our trails, please call IPD (911 for emergencies, 425-837-3200 for non-emergencies) so they can respond immediately or delegate appropriately.

Vicki Grunewald is a Harrison Street resident.