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Very busy trail. Small parking lot with not many other options to park nearby. Great views of Mt. Hood and surrounding moutains

hiking
2 days ago

Completed 11/10 - although snow was on trail from the beginning, it was still very well maintained the whole way! Wore hiking boots and runners and both were fine but traction would have been great.
Frozen, snowy lake, no larch color left, but was beautiful blue bird day! Will return, but preferably larch season.

5 days ago

Absolutely Amazing when you reach the top!

Lovely new trailhead and bridges, much better parking situation though sure to draw even more weekend crowds but on this foggy Fall morning I had the trail to myself. A worker told me the Grand Opening for this new trailhead is this Friday Nov 9th. The new trail veers away from the highway fairly quickly, thankfully. Snow started at 4500' today. About an inch was covering the ridge (Tom, Dick and Harry) making things slick. Highly recommend having boot traction of some kind and trekking poles at this point.

hiking
9 days ago

I’ve done this hike 6 times now. It has to be done on a beautiful day. Mid-summer is perfect as long as it’s clear. Training is important if you aren’t an avid hiker. Starting out at a slower pace helps make the whole hike enjoyable. Bring a large garbage bag to slide down the many trails. You’re on snow for about half of it.

the roadside trail head is closed permenantly. do not park on the roadside and walk over, there are trees intentionally blocking the trail at a few points. new trail head is at skibowl. There is a lot visable from the road and they were even nice enough to add some facilities

Beautiful hike! Most people had dogs on leash. There was one off leash that ambushed my dog despite me shouting "recall your dog" because owners had no control. Reactive dog owners beware, a lot of this hike is very narrow.
Great hike, very scenic everywhere

Completed August 12-13 2018
Camped Hiked up twice

Did this a few weeks ago with my fiancé it’s was amazing... one of my bucket list hikes soooo worth it but it took much longer then I thought it would... I will do it again next year!! Maybe summit in 2020...

hiking
16 days ago

Wonderful hike with an amazing view of Mt Rainier at the peak.

However, the main road to the trailhead is closed for the season. We did not know this. So it was an additional 5 miles from the parking lot to trailhead.

All in all an extra 10 miles, but it was worth it.

Really nice, solidly moderate skill level, well-maintained trail with some terrific views of Mount Hood and, on a clearer day, many of the surrounding peaks. We arrived at around 10:00 am on a Tuesday and had no issues finding parking. As others have noted, we did not get a NW Park pass, as it is after Oct. 1.

A beautiful hike!
I would suggest using a 4 wheel drive, or high clearance vehicle. The road to the parking is plagued with potholes. That makes the journey a lot longer to park. There are no facilities here.
It wasn't too busy, and it was a gorgeous fall day!

hiking
19 days ago

10/19 (Fri midday): Picture perfect views at the peak and all along the way. We had a clear, sunny, warm autumn day with no wind. Not one, but two clear blue lakes along a mostly flat trail to a short, steep climb to the peak/fire lookout and stunning Mt Rainier looming super large, so close you could almost touch. Big wow for my east coast guests. Popular hike but not overrun. All mountain hikes I know require driving a long gravel road like this route in, so not sure why everyone is so freaked out by it? Road is in great shape and well maintained, as you would expect with a back road in any National Park. Handled it in a rented Impala no problemo.

This is a pretty crowded trail (parking lot jam-packed at 2 on a Monday) and a decent hike with some great views. As others have said, the crowd thins after Mirror Lake. For me, I'd rate this hike on the easy side, and after doing other hikes around the area, I wouldn't drive the 3 hours roundtrip for this hike again. Still, if you're nearby, it's a quick way to see many peaks. As for the forest pass, on the government website it says the pass is only needed until Oct. 1st, so I didn't get one and had no issues.

hiking
20 days ago

I did this during the summer and it was definitely worth it. The views when you get on top are awesome! Before you get back to your car, stop by Mowich Lake and check it out.

hiking
21 days ago

I hiked this trail in mid October on a foggy-turned-sunny day with a couple friends. The views were spectacular. Mt. Rainier consumes half your view when you get to the top and St. Helens is off to the west. The hike was really easy and fast so it's a great hike for a half day instead of a full day. Also, the dirt road leading to the trail is long but wide and well kept. I took my Ford Fusion up it at 25 mph no problems.

Just did this hike on Saturday October 20th with 3 buddies. Couldn’t have picked a better day to do this hike! Perfect weather and not a cloud in site. The views were amazing... clear enough to see Mount Adams, St Helens and even Mount Hood in Oregon!! Saw a mountain goat and 2 avalanches over on the Nisqually Glacier. You could hear the booms...very cool! Well worth the effort as it is tough. Especially (for me at least) the last quarter mile or so was very taxing. Partly because i was fully geared up testing some new equipment carrying about 40 lbs. Took us 5 hours up and 3 hours down. We could have shaved an hour or so off that time if we really pushed but we were in no hurry. Too bad the snow was mostly ice so no glissading but it was a great hike nonetheless. I plan to do this hike a few more times with hopes to summit Rainier by the end of next summer!

hiking
21 days ago

A must do hike if you live in Washington or Seattle! Great views of greenish blue lakes break up the hike on the way up. Not a super long hike - once you hit Eunice lake, it gets steeper but not long to the top. Amazing view from the peak of Mount Rainier! Drive in gets bumpy about 45+ minutes from trail head.

hiking
21 days ago

Was there yesterday 10/21. Not as crowded nor as amazing as it was billed to be. We were disappointed by the color. I guess we missed it. No snow or ice. A little mud. No need for traction 10/21. It was a beautiful day.

When we got to the lake it was nice and sunny, but not much longer when we got to the peak the fog had come up so fast we - couldn’t see anything

We hiked the trail on a beautiful sunny day and the scenery was gorgeous. The 10+ mile gravel road is like a wash board in many areas but there are few potholes. A truck or SUV will have no trouble. A car will have a bumpy, slower trip. It took our group of three 60 year olds and two 30 year olds about 4 hours to do the round trip. We took a lot of breaks, pictures, and had lunch at the fire lookout. The rating of moderate is accurate for this trail.

Simply amazing. A relatively short hike with some of the most breathtaking views at the end. We were lucky to get a sunny fall day and see Rainier in all its glory, along with Adams and St Helens. The drop off the edge is insane, incredible photos for a little effort!

A fun trail with a rewarding view! Just be sure to turn left at the pile of rocks near the top. Got tricked up there for a second ;). If you continue further down along the rocks at the summit you can find a nice little point away from most of the crowd

Beautiful hike! Not a long hike, but good elevation gain. We did it with a 9 & 7 year old. The kids had a great time, but they are used to doing these types of hikes. There was a 360 view that was incredible.

Amazing hike.
The trail is not as hard as it looks from its distance because the first 1.4 miles are flat or downhill.
Rainier view are along several points of the trail, and the view at the top is stunning.

hiking
24 days ago

I only made it 4 miles out. The stretch that I hiked was a nice shaded trail that ran alongside the Hoh River.

Amazing!!!! Spectacular views of the huge craggy mountain peaks, glaciers and Hidden Lake. Meadow has really pretty fall foliage coloring right now. We hiked yesterday, Oct 18th, and temps were perfect. Barely any snow - did not need crampons. Trail started getting muddy in the afternoon. Hiked at a moderate pace and took us 5.5 hrs (with 1.25 hrs spent sitting at the summit overlooking the lake).

Drive to/from trailhead off of Cascade River Rd is as bad as the other reviews say. Guessing it took us 45 min to get up & 30 min on way down. Gets dark early these days! Bring a headlamp if you're starting late!

hiking
25 days ago

Beautiful hike!! So many colors out right now! It’s cold once you get to the lake so be prepared!

hiking
25 days ago

Absolutely magnificent trail. Would highly recommend during the fall season. It took us 2+1+1.5 hrs car to car. It’s an easy hike which is kid and pet friendly. However the drive till there can be tiresome once the gravel road starts.

Really awesome trail with views, and so accessible being right off the highway for any car (forest pass required).

Definitely agree with other reviewers that it’s worth it to take the trail around mirror lake on your way up or back, up to you, and if it’s not too choppy you get an extra beautiful show.

Trail was super well maintained and wasn’t as busy as I expected on a Weds afternoon. Crowd thins after Mirror Lake (trailhead you park @ is Mirror Lake Trailhead). Gorgeous fall colors right now too!

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