Explore Mt. Rainier - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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We hike a ton, but this was definitely a challenge. The first 2 miles were relentless switchbacks with no downhill or even flat relief. Needless to say, our legs are sore.

Loved this hike! Watched a proposal on top- the weather was amazing, view was great, go do it. Bring $30 cash or you will get a ticket. Good tires recommended as you must drive on a long and bumpy dirt road.

Went solo on this trip the last week in September in 9 days/8 nights. One needs a permit and there is an easy system to sign up on-line either through a lottery system in March or there are walk-up intermarry possibilities if one has a flexible schedule. Also, routes can either be clock-wise or counter clock-wise in layout. The hike could be comfortably be done in 7 days/6 nights from a mileage perspective. I would rate this as 'hard' but not that 'difficult' in that there is +/- 25,000 ft. of elevation gain and loss for the whole hike, 2k-3K per day on average. It is hard as there is so much up and down. Hiking poles for me were a must. It is not difficult in that it is, during the summer months, a heavily traveled trek and the trails are generally well maintained and easy to follow forest paths. Each day you at going up and down at least one major 2K+ foot section between camps. With side-trips, the 93- 96 mile trek easily ends up over 100+ miles. I took the alternative 'Spray' trail in the northwest as this route is higher up, with closer views of the mountain. There are mountain goats, elk, dear and bear and, the ever present marmots. The weather cooperated, for the most part - 4 days of sunshine, 3 days of overcast, 1 day of rain and 1 day of snow (at 6,000 ft.). The temperature was in the 50s during the day which made for excellent hiking conditions, without overheating. There were no bugs and few people in the camp sites in late September. One is rewarded throughout with spectacular views of the mountain, hills, valleys and rivers as well as different scenery on each day as one heads through different sections and climate zones. In late September, the colors of the bushes change to fiery reds, oranges, yellows and purples - all providing a stark contrast to the bare mountain terrain they grow on. The Wonderland Trail takes one through barren outcrops, subalpine meadows, old growth forests, 'burned' out sections that are regenerating, talus fields and, of course, raging glacial river valleys which leave their silty/rocky deposits below. It is 'hard' because of the elevation gains and losses. All bridges were in place and markers in riverbeds were easy to spot as one navigated low lying sections. I enjoyed the campsites as they all have backcountry privies that are convenient and bear poles for your food/trash at night. In late September, there are few that you are sharing with. One of the pluses for this type of hike is that in each corner of the park, there are cache points to pre-stage food if you choose not to carry it all with you. Further, all campsites, save one, had stream, lake or other water sources near by so water for cooking and drinking was not a problem. Few trails of this length are as well laid out and maintained, with spectacular scenery, and this is the grand daddy of them all. Take the time - it is worth it.

This hike was amazing, the views we had of Mt Rainier were incredible. We started the hike around 7:30am, It is essentially just walking up 3 big hills. The weather was great, sunny with a few clouds near Rainier which moved away. The first two mountains we easy and direct, when we got to the bottom of the second there was a sign pointing left for Burroughs trail and right to frozen lake, it confused us a bit because we wanted to do the third burrough mountain so we just continued on up the third one, It did look a bit daunting but the views on the third mountain are the best! It took use about 3 hours out and back, we stopped a bit for pictures and to snack a bit. I recommend hiking early, there seemed to be allot of people starting their hikes at 10am-11 and this is when the clouds seemed to role in so they might of missed their chance for a good view. On the way back we saw a pack of mountain goats, and TONS of chipmunks.

Beautiful hike!

Amazing views but seemed a little more difficult than a medium as most of the trail was uphill. Great payoff though.

The views were incredible! Different lakes, a lot of fall colors and a view on Mount Rainier even if it was cloudy.
The road to get there is pretty difficult : gravel road and a lot of potholes for about an hour.

hiking
5 days ago

This was a great hike with some great views when the clouds broke. Great shots of Rainier.

Amazing view!

Amazing hike. Only went to the second Burroughs but still totally worth it. Did the hike on 9/29 and even though the weather in Seattle was warm (low 70s) it was pretty chilly on the hike (low 50s). Also, I’m used to East Coast, low altitude hiking and even though I could feel a difference because of the altitude, it wasn’t too bad.

Amazing day hike! Crevasse is pretty easy to spot, but definitely keep an eye out (hikers right going up, left going down). Took about 7 hours - we kept a solid pace, but needed a few stops on the last mile and spend about 20 mins at the camp.

Amazing hike! I left set off on the trail around 7am on a friday and didn't see anyone until I was on my way down.

The views were amazing and even with the fog, the view would partially reveal itself every once in a while.

Have fun!

Did this hike last Wednesday under beautiful clear skies. Got to Sunrise around 8 and encountered stiff winds along the ridge to 1st and 2nd Burroughs. The descent into the valley connecting the 2nd and 3rd mountains loses around 350 feet, leaving a long, tough slog of 800+ feet in a mile up to the summit of the 3rd. The elevation plays a role as the approach is in the 7.5k ft. range so pace yourself. Views from the 3rd summit are stupid-good and humbling in their scope. I’ve living in the PNW for 30+ years and hiked at Rainier before; this hike made me feel guilty I hadn’t done more in this area before. Bring layers as most of this trail is completely exposed. Made it back to the Trailhead by noon just as the trail traffic was picking up heading back up the mountain.

My friend and I did it yesterday! Gorgeous weather and yes it is a very strenuous hike. Watch out the crevasse and take you micro spikes!

This was one of the best hikes I have done. This was 2nd time doing it. The first time we ended at 2nd Burrough fog was heavy so we couldn’t see anything. This past weekend the sun was out and shinning. I decided to take my friend the opposite way. So we started on rim trail and ended frozen lake trail. It was steeper going up, but easier coming down, when we reached 2nd Burrough since sun was out. Loads were rolling in we decided to start to head to 3rd Burrough. We asked people coming down they said was worth the hike. When we got to the top it was amazing! There were clouds on top portion of rainier but still amazing. As we enjoyed lunch the clouds started to move and give us glimpses of the top of rainier. Absolutely amazing! Worth it on a clear day. We saw 1 squirrel is all! Was looking for goats but did not see any on Saturday.

Strenuous day hike best started early. Temp changes pretty drastically halfway to base camp. Brought microspikes which helped some, may as well use them if you got. Did not use poles. Such rapid elevation change that I needed more frequent stops towards the end. Great views, but once you get about a mile from the camp you’re just trucking over snow at a high altitude. Nonetheless, I’d do it again. You can hear the glaciers break apart in loud booms and it’s pretty phenomenal.

Beautiful. Just long enough for a short family hike. Easy as far as terrain and trail with a mild uphill. Water is blue and gorgeous. Definitely a do again I Warner weather when you can dip into water.

My wife and I hiked up to 2nd Burroughs and once again it was amazing!! It was the first time to 2nd Burroughs and she loved it. I was hoping to see some Mountain Goats but not this time. We did see a bear heading up to the parking lot which was cool. I recommend if you just go to 2nd Burroughs to start to 3rd Burroughs until you hit the first turn (an extra 20 yards). One of the best view of the mountain and trail!!!

hiking
15 days ago

Beautiful hike! Went there a week ago and the fall colors were just starting to show. Definitely one of my favorite trails.

This is one of the best hikes we have done in all of WA. We started out headed to Frozen Lake because of a recommendation from a park ranger. I would actually not take this route again, if we had gone the other way it would have provided better views of the mountain while heading towards the first burrough. Each burrough you go to has a better view than the last, and I would highly recommend going to the third burrough for a perfect ending. It is about 1.5 miles from the second burrough down an unmarked dirt path below. Warning, it is a harder climb up than the first two. At the top you are about as close to Mt Rainier as possible with great views of the glaciers on the opposite side. Overall, even with the third burrough added on the hikes difficulty was not extreme and offered insane views throughout.

hiking
17 days ago

the views of lake Eunice and Mt. Rainer are beautiful! Start before 9 am to beat the crowds.

TLDR: we fell through the ice into a crevasse.

My boyfriend and I are avid hikers and wanted to do this trail when visiting rainier. We did a lot of research, and even though we knew it could be a dangerous hike, we were mostly warned on changing weather conditions and whiteouts. It was a beautiful day today - record breaking, not a cloud in the sky. We were almost at Muir (which is a very strenuous hike, if we made it to the top it might have been worth it), when POOF, through the earth i fell. No warnings, no holes in the ground, just walking on snow and next thing I know I’m in a glacier way over my head. My boyfriend tried to get me out and then he fell in too. After some struggle, getting soaked by the freezing ice, and getting stuck deeper in the hole, we finally got out. Thank god I had a sat phone and we called for help as I was I injured. On the way down the mountain, the guide fell in another crevasse in a totally different location!! We had never even heard of these and here we were. There was even a warning sign before the snowfield that mentioned whiteouts and weather changes but no mention of crevasses. So, while Rainier is beautiful, and the hike might be good for people with snowshoes or skis, BE CAREFUL. we could have died today.

Great hike! Perfect weather. Love the different terrain. Forest, meadows, rocks, waterfalls. Saw marmots & mountain goats. Pretty green lake. View of Mount Adams & Mount Hood from Panhandle Gap.

Great hike with amazing weather today. This trail is a new favorite of mine on Mt. Rainier. Totally worth the extra effort to go to Third Burroughs.

on Silver Falls Trail

20 days ago

What a beautiful hike!

hiking
20 days ago

Beautiful hike, with unbelievable views of Mount Rainier (if the sky is clear). It was not a very difficult hike, but it is very rewarding on a clear day. We got there early and there was almost no one there. By the time we left, it was packed.

One of my favorite hikes at Sunrise! Spectacular views.. definitely a hike I will never forget. Bring lots of water if hiking in the summer!

Such an great hike! The lake was absolutely beautiful & the lookout was amazing! I recommend hiking boots, we ran into a bit of mud in several areas.

Great views or MR. interesting to sit and watch the clouds change around the mountain. One area approx .25 mi had steep dropoffs and was a bit rocky, narrow path. Otherwise all good.
Finally saw goats! There were in distance but happy to see goats. Also saw 4 young deer, 1 marmot and many chipmunks.
Overall J enjoyed Paradise skyline trail much better.

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