As they say, there’s no bad weather, just bad gear, so grab a coat, a hat, some gloves and boots and get outside to enjoy what some consider the Inland Northwest’s finest season: winter. If skiing isn’t your thing, there’s still plenty to do outdoors. If you are looking for the best winter activities to do in Spokane, then we have you covered!
Outdoor Winter Activities
Even if it’s your very first attempt, strap on a pair of snowshoes and you’re ready to hit the trail. No lessons required. “The moment that you’re in the trees in this snowy wonderland, it’s just really special,” says REI’s Katie Wiseman. “In the winter, I think SNOWSHOEING is one of the most enjoyable activities. It makes the short afternoons really enjoyable.” Mt. Spokane and Newman Lake guided snowshoe tours are frequently offered by Spokane Parks and Recreation.
The Turnbull National Wildlife Refuge offers wonderful opportunities for a nearby, yet wild, space to get in tune with nature’s gentle rhythms. And what better way to relax than BIRDWATCHING as they go about their winter activities. Look for hairy and downy woodpeckers, northern flickers, as well as three species of nuthatches, and red crossbills that call the Refuge home. If you’re serious about birdwatching, consider taking part in the 122nd annual Christmas Bird Count organized by the Audubon Society, taking place from Dec. 14 to Jan. 5, 2022.
Local history buffs will enjoy an outing filled with tales of past inhabitants who walked the very same streets in their hometown. Spokane Historical, a project of Eastern Washington University’s history department, features GUIDED WALKING TOURS (or Sunday driving tours, if a warm car is more appealing) of points both well-known and obscure. Learn about the history of Manito Park or Browne’s Addition, or about historical influences, such Japanese-Americans of Spokane.
For a festive afternoon, there’s no need to look further than a visit to Spokane’s Numerica Ice Ribbon. Pop in starting November 20, weather permitting, for a session of ICE SKATING. The 16-foot-wide pathway, lined with evergreen landscaping, meanders over gentle slopes for 650 feet, and also includes a pond for skaters wanting to try out some spins. Cozy fire pits welcome skaters for a rest, and warm up while having a cup of cocoa from the Sky Ribbon Cafe, with indoor seating also available. Spokane’s official Christmas tree stands watch over the ribbon, and you may even catch some carolers serenading.
When it’s time to CUT YOUR OWN CHRISTMAS TREE, head up to Green Bluff for an always memorable outing to choose the perfect tree. Wreaths and garlands are often available, and a cup of hot cider helps warm hands and tummies. Be aware that local farms have limited stock and sometimes sell out, and reservations may be required, so check ahead at greenbluffgrowers.com.