By Justine McDaniel
Are you and your dog in an around-the-block slump? Shake up your routine and check out some of the area’s best trails and parks. You’ll never take a walk around the neighborhood again.
Cedar River Trail in Renton is part of the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, which turns unused rail lines into hiking trails. The trail is 4.5 miles long and runs next to a 24-acre park, which contains picnic spaces and access to the Cedar River Boathouse. The trail is also adjacent to the Cedar River Dog Park, where your dog can run around off-leash. There is a separate area for small and shy dogs, making it the perfect place for low-key pooches and the big boys, too. 1156 S 3rd St., Renton.
The 11-mile Sammamish River Trail is the perfect place to run or walk with Fido and get a taste of the great outdoors. With Marymoor Park in Redmond at one end and Blyth Park in Bothell at the other, the trail connects the East Lake Sammamish Trail with the Burke-Gilman Trail at the top of Lake Washington in Kenmore. Marymoor Park also has a popular 40-acre off-leash dog area. Marymoor Park, 6046 W. Lake Sammamish Pkwy. N.E., Redmond. Blyth Park, 16950 W. Riverside Drive, Bothell.
Head to Bellevue for Robinswood Animal Corral, a fully fenced, off-leash park that offers drinking water and benches. There are also trails to explore nearby, and the park is often less crowded than other dog-friendly trails. 2430 148th Ave. S.E., Bellevue.
Lake Youngs Trail in Renton makes a 10-mile loop ideal for dog-walking. The path is mildly hilly and circles Lake Youngs reservoir with Petrovisky Park at one end. The trail is full of wildlife and offers a great dayhike for you and your dog. 16600 S.E. Old Petrovisky Road, Renton.
If you’re looking for something slightly different and a little more active for your high-energy dog, try flyball at Seattle FlyDogs. Flyball consists of a jump course with a flyball box which the dogs must trigger; a ball is launched for the dog to retrieve and bring back over the hurdles. The flyball club offers lessons, weekly practice, public demonstrations and tournaments. Flyball builds athletic skills in your dog and camaraderie with other dog owners. seattleflydogs.com