Home / The Urban Outdoors

The Urban Outdoors

Parkour // Recess for Grownups and Kids

Josh Blakely clears a fallen log with ease.

Straight though it may be, the shortest distance between two points isn’t always flat or easily navigable. Most people would avoid a wall, boulder, or railing by walking around it. But, argue the growing community of worldwide parkour enthusiasts, where’s ...

Read More »

Winter Birding: More Exciting Than It Sounds

Sharp-shinned Hawk. // Photo: Lindell Haggin

Lindell Haggin, an avid birder and Spokane Audubon Society treasurer, narrows the scope of her bird-watching to her North Spokane backyard during the cold months. “A lot of people don’t realize how many birds are around. I’ll get up to ...

Read More »

In-Town Ideas for Staying Active This Winter

No excuses for not getting outside in the winter. // photo: Erika Prins Simonds

Every Sunday morning without fail, a hodgepodge of experienced players and newbies gathers to play Ultimate Frisbee at Wentel Grant Park in Vinegar Flats. Neither knee-deep snow nor Christmas falling on a Sunday is cause to cancel a game. Sometimes ...

Read More »

The Best City Park You’ve Never Heard of: Drumheller Springs

Two bucks enjoy vernal pools. // Photo: Nick Thomas.

Perhaps, like me, you’ve caught brief glimpses of a mysterious, wooded slope as you cruise up and down Ash Street north of downtown Spokane. I’ve long assumed it was just someone’s yard. In fact, that’s Drumheller Springs. There, trails wind ...

Read More »

Getting Cardio When the Air Quality is Bad

Good air. Bad air. // Photos courtesy of Spokane Regional Clean Air Agency.

Those midsummer blood-red sunsets in Spokane carry bittersweet beauty — they’re usually a sign of high levels of fine smoke or dust particles. During those times, and throughout the summer, experts recommend checking the air quality when planning an outdoor ...

Read More »

Regional Clubs Offer Midweek Options for Easy In-town Running

2016 Kickoff Run

The Inland Northwest is a region of runners, evidenced by its many running clubs. There’s something for everyone: Elite women have the Spokane Swifts, elite men have the Spokane Distance Project, trail runners have the Trail Maniacs, and beginner and ...

Read More »

Art Gone Wild

Photos: Janelle McCabe

When was the last time a landscape spoke to you? Were you marveling at the fields of balsamroot in Riverside State Park? Holding your breath as you pedaled over a trestle on the Hiawatha Trail? Gazing out over Lake Pend ...

Read More »

Letter What? Letterboxing Provides New Way to Experience Familiar Spaces

Photo: Erik K.

Adventure. New places. Family fun. Creativity. If any of that sounds enticing, it might be a great time to start letterboxing. No, this isn’t what your mail carrier does with rival mail carriers. It’s a hobby with roots in England ...

Read More »

The Mystery of the Council Circle

The council circle newly in place looks like the perfect place for a regular summertime bluegrass jam, eh? // Photo courtesy of Larry Schwartz.

Did the floods roil over it? Or did a forklift just plop it in place? Has it always been there?  Or, as one Spokane West Central neighborhood teenager, returning to visit his favorite haunt, exclaimed, “Where did THAT come from?” ...

Read More »