Top 5+ Urban Trail Runs Around Seattle

Birds chirping, leaves rustling, no pavement--sometimes you want to get away from sidewalks, cars and people. Getting out on a hiking trail is the perfect way to do that. Running on local trails is part of what motivated us to build SwitchLok and we have continued to explore as much as possible during the development process. 

Unfortunately, its tough to drive an hour or more at lunch or after work just to get to a remote trailhead. But what if we didn’t have to? What if you could just pop across town and get a taste of that trail zen experience, get in a quick run and then get back to real life?


With that lofty vision in mind, I set out to find the top URBAN trails for running in the greater Seattle area (my hometown, naturally). Here's how I chose:
1. Must be located in a city
2. Preferably minimal to no pavement
3. Minimal to no 'civilization' visible
4. Must be at least three miles of trail available

This isn't meant to be a scientific analysis--it's just our humble opinions. Let us know what you think or if we missed anything. We're always happy to try a new one.

Discovery Park, Seattle

Discovery Park - North Beach Trail
  • Recommended route - North Beach Trail
  • Good
    • Gorgeous, especially the portion that runs along Shilshole bay. You get incredible views of the sound, the lighthouse, bainbridge island and more than likely, some seals along the way
  • Bad
    • Trails can get very muddy if it rains
    • Fair amount of paved roads
    • Trails twist, turn and intersect, you have to pay attention
    • Can be busy depending on when you go

Redmond Watershed Preserve, Redmond

Redmond Watershed Preserve
  • Recommended Route - Pipeline Train
  • Good
    • Well maintained trails in absolutely beautiful forests
    • Rolling hills and gentle turns--never boring
    • Gates prevent horses and bikes on certain sections
  • Bad
    • Horses are allowed on certain sections--watch out for land mines

Cross Kirkland Corridor, Kirkland

Cross Kirkland Corridor
  • Recommended Route - NE 112th St to Chainline Brewery
  • Good
    • Gravel/Dirt trail is well maintained and never muddy
    • Some beautiful sections, especially when fall colors arrive
    • One trail only, no need to pay attention
    • Beer! There's beer! Stop for a beer at the Chainline Brewery. Its right on the trail and the beer is really good!
  • Bad
    • Some streets to cross
    • You will see some houses, more in the winter when foliage is sparse
    • There is some bike traffic around commute times. Stay on the right and you'll be fine.

Bridle Trails State Park, Kirkland

Bridle Trails Park, Running Trails

  • Recommended Route: Coyote Trail
  • Good
    • Tons of beautiful flat trails to choose from
  • Bad
    • Have to pay for parking or have a discovery pass
    • Watch out for horses and their byproducts--its called Bridle Trails for a reason

Burke-Gilman Trail, Seattle

Burke Gilman Trail, Running Trail Seattle

  • Recommended route - Golden Garden Park to the Fremont Troll
  • Good
    • The route is beautiful - from the scene park views to the water views, this is a favorite run for many people in the Seattle area.
  • Bad
    • During the summer this trail can get very busy.
    • Can be rocky at times, so you need to watch the path.
    • Pavement and buildings in areas