Green Lake – Seattle’s Best Walk

Green Lake in fall color
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Sometimes, the richest memories in life are formed in the most mundane of activities. Like walking.

For years, Seattle’s Green Lake Park was my happy place. It still is, really, though I live in West Seattle now and get up to the north end of the city far less often than I should. For a long time, a stretch of many of my Seattle years, Green Lake was always just a few blocks away, and I considered it to be my backyard.

I started most mornings, summer and winter, walking the 3 miles around the lake. Sometimes I walked alone, just me and my walkman. Most of the time I would walk with a friend. Almost always, I would walk with a cup of coffee in my hand from the Urban Bakery or Peet’s.


Early morning winter walks were my favorite. Only the regulars are there then. We would see each other every day. There was the gal on rollerblades with the parrot on her shoulder. The guy that gives Spanish lessons while you walk. Martin, the birdwatcher.

My friend used to say that you see everyone at Green Lake. Maybe next time I’ll see you there?


If You Go

Info: Green Lake Park website | (206) 684-4075

Get There: Green Lake Park is located at 7201 East Green Lake Dr N. in north Seattle (see map)

Features: 2.8-mile paved walking path (wheels ok), basketball, soccer, baseball/softball, tennis, outdoor wading pool, indoor pool, paddleboat and kayak rentals (summer only), hand-carry boat launch, swimming beach, restrooms, cafe.

Canada geese are common at Green Lake
Canada Geese are common at Green Lake. Photo by Lauren Braden
Paddling a rented kayak at Green Lake
Paddling a rented kayak at Green Lake. Photo by Lauren Braden
Lauren Braden’s new book, 52 Ways to Nature, Washington: Your Seasonal Guide to a Wilder Year, is now available for pre-order
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2 Responses

  1. Hi Lauren,

    Congrats on this cool project. I’ve covered Greenlake several times in the past couple months on my blog “Of Paramount Importance”. I love going there, since I can drive in less than 10 mins. We used to live in Maple Leaf and walked and recreated there frequently.

    Here’s a couple of my blog posts –



    1. Thanks, Janet! I love the pictures in your posts. Winter is my favorite time there, but summers are wonderful, too. It’s just a truly special spot and we’re so lucky to have it!

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