Harvey Manning of Bellevue, considered one of the godfathers of Washington's outdoors community, died Sunday. He was 81. A Seattle native and...

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Harvey Manning of Bellevue, considered one of the godfathers of Washington’s outdoors community, died Sunday. He was 81.

A Seattle native and well-known conservation activist, Manning edited and wrote dozens of influential hiking guidebooks over four decades. He was a frequent co-author with Ira Spring, who died in 2003. Together, they wrote and photographed much of the original “100 Hikes” series of guides published by The Mountaineers, seminal works that launched the hiking avocations of many Northwesterners.

Manning was a founding member of the North Cascades Conservation Council and the editor of its publication. He was also the editor of the Seattle-based Mountaineers club’s climbing text, “Mountaineering: The Freedom of the Hills,” published in 1960, and later “The North Cascades,” which helped draw the nation’s attention to the area that became North Cascades National Park.

He also is credited with a key role in establishing wilderness areas in Washington, working in tandem with The Mountaineers, which Manning joined in 1948.

He had been ailing and unable to hike for several years.

— Brian J. Cantwell, Northwest Weekend editor