Mt. Rainier

More travels and another National Park checked off the list.

This week Ray Ray and I visited Mt. Rainier in the evergreen state of Washington. We are on a Northwest swing visiting family and despite not having the usual 2-to-3 days we prefer to fully visit a park, we made due with only one.

Since it’s “only July,” some parts of the park remained difficult to explore. This winter’s snowfall was significant (a good thing) and much of it is still slowly melting. Without the appropriate gear we were limited to easily accessible trails, mostly at lower altitudes.

We did manage to get close to the main attraction. The roads were cleared and all visitor centers were opened. We saw the great mountain as we entered the park, its unique weather system created a batch of clouds that surrounded the top one third of the mountain and slowly disappeared the further away (or down) from the mountain top you looked. And that is one of the most amazing things about this giant beast that, when viewed from afar, creates the most dramatic backdrop against the Seattle skyline.

Mount Rainier rising behind Seattle. (Wikimedia Commons)

John Muir said of Rainier, “Of all the fire mountains which like beacons, once blazed along the Pacific Coast, Mount Rainier is the noblest.” I think he was right.


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