Nestled in the heart of Washington State, situated in the “gap” of the Yakima Valley foothills, the town of Union Gap hosts adventurers from the Northwest and beyond looking to get outdoors under sunny skies. Hike, bike and ride on hundreds of miles of trails just a short drive in any direction. Stroll riverside pathways, hike rugged subalpine trails and explore the diversity of Washington’s shrub-steppe landscape.
The Yakima Greenway
The 22-mile, paved Yakima Greenway begins in Union Gap and runs along the Yakima and Naches Rivers all the way to the town of Naches. The mostly flat trail leads to fishing lakes, boat landings, picnic areas, nature trails and playgrounds. The Greenway is a favorite for cyclists, runners, families and folks looking for a stroll with furry friends. Just a few miles up the trail brings you to the 46-acre Yakima Arboretum, a green space and refuge cultivated with display gardens, tree collections and natural areas.
Ahtanum State Forest
A short, 45-minute drive takes you from Union Gap to Ahtanum State Forest spanning more than 70,000 acres. Discover this hidden gem with a vast expanse of rolling hills, dense forests, and rugged landscapes, rocky outcrops and open meadows.
Ahtanum State Forest offers hundreds of miles of diverse trails for hiking, mountain biking, off-roading and horseback riding. Tree Phones Campgrounds gives access to one of the most popular trail systems, the 23-mile Grey Rock trail, accessible to hikers, horseback riders, mountain bikes, motorcycles and ATVs. Enjoy views of Mt. Rainier and Mt. Adams, open ridges, ponderosa pine forests, dense Douglas fir stands and spruce forests. The ever-popular Grey Rock 25K and 12K trail runs take place July 8, 2023.
For hikers and equestrians, the Whites Ridge Loop Trail is a must-visit. This 11-mile loop trail meanders through dense forests, open meadows and rocky ridges, providing picturesque views of the Yakima Valley and Mount Adams. Eagle’s Nest Vista is a popular overlook with expansive views. It provides dramatic views of the North Fork Ahtanum, Dome Peak and the Goat Rocks Wilderness Area.
Hiking Close to Home
Right in Union Gap, you’ll find a unique hiking opportunity with two trailheads originating at the Central Washington Agricultural Museum. Both lead to stunning views of upper and lower Yakima Valley from the top of Ahtanum Ridge. After your hike, stop at the adjacent Fulbright Park for a round of disc golf on the 15-hole course.