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Skyline Trail is a 5.9 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Paradise Inn, Washington that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, camping, and backpacking and is best used from July until October.

Length 5.9 mi Elevation gain 1,788 ft Route type Loop

Backpacking

Camping

Hiking

Forest

Partially paved

River

Views

Waterfall

Wild flowers

Wildlife

Bugs

Muddy

Rocky

Snow

No dogs

Description
Waypoints (0)
Facilities
Contact
Getting There

Note: This route is rated moderate-hard. Spikes and poles highly recommended in snow conditions. Trail loops around broad Edith Creek basin, leading through alpine flower meadows, past thundering waterfalls, and over high, craggy peaks. In this one loop you'll experience the best paradise region has to offer. Users recommend going clockwise.

A National Parks Pass is required to enter the park

Mount Rainier National Park Longmire Wilderness Information Center Tahoma Woods, Star Route Ashford, WA 98304 Tel: 360.569.4453

From Tacoma, south 40 miles on Highway 7 to Elbe. Turn east on Highway 706 and drive 10 miles to the Nisqually Entrance Station. Continue 18 miles to the National Park Inn at Paradise. The trailhead is behind the inn.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (1633)
Photos (2955)
Recordings (920)
Completed (4052)
Kevin Krieger
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 13, 2020
Hiking

Awesome trail. Incredible views the entire time. Started at nine to avoid the crowd and it wasn’t very busy… By the time we finished at noon the parking lot was full.

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Leanne Foster
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 13, 2020
HikingGreat!

Get to the Paradise parking lot early!! This trail gets 100 stars !! Beautiful EVERY step and every 360 degree turn! It took us five hours and 2 of those hours for picture stops!! The wildflowers are at their peak. The most wonderful hike EVER ... I’m glad I had my poles. Still a few patches of snow. I did fine in low Merrell hikers that were waterproof. Honestly, if you only do 1 trail in your lifetime - make it be this one!!!!

Jason Hatter
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 12, 2020
Walking

Incredible! The animals are super friendly, I saw a chipmunk climbing all over a little kid who had food and it was hilarious. There is a major temperature drop how do you get higher so make sure you have warm clothes available... especially gloves for any kids.

View Jason's Recording
Mritunjay K.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 11, 2020
Hiking

Amazing trail with beautiful views all the way towards muir camp.

Muqu Javad
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 11, 2020
HikingBugsGreat!No shadeRockySnow

Possibly my favorite trail, we had a clear day yesterday and had views throughout the hike, everywhere we looked was stunning! It’s one of those trails where the journey is just as beautiful as “the final destination” We did it clockwise as we started later in the day to avoid heat and crowds and hiked back to paradise in the dark via the golden gate trail as a shortcut in between. I highly recommend starting earlier and doing the full loop but the golden gate trail was gorgeous with flowers as well (the most we could see with our headlamps) There was some snow that was hard to figure out in the dark after panorama point and the incline really winds you out but overall we did it fairly easily with poles and good boots. Bring warm layers though as it gets chilly up top!

Amanda Henson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 11, 2020
Hiking

it was amazing!

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Kinsley Winn
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 11, 2020
HikingSnow

We completed this hike on July 27th and it was still covered in snow and some ice. We hiked it counterclockwise to have a more gradual ascent. First 1/3 of ascent was paved/clear of snow, second 1/3 had intense snow, and then last 1/3 was dry and rocky up to the top. We used poles, and those without them were struggling. Luckily dirt was coming off the paths so you could make out most of the trails while you were hiking in the snow. The path is not clearly marked without seeing the tracks of others.

Nikki Sullivan
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 11, 2020
Scenic drivingFeeIcySnow

Did this trail on 8-7 and entered the nation park around 8am. Let me be the one to tell you that this is the prettiest hike I have ever done. The trailheads and signs are little misleading at times so be careful. We ended up going counter clockwise by misreading signs. I highly recommend doing this trail clockwise. We gained elevation 80% of the way causing us to also have to climb the icy patches instead of sliding down. The trail was not too busy but when we ended around noon it was highly trafficked.

Tyler Hall
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 11, 2020
HikingGreat!MuddySnow

Done 7/25 — Trail was mostly paved, and clear, however a small portion towards the end was completely obstructed by ice which made it a pain but was very doable. One of the prettiest hikes I’ve ever been on.

Fiji Dave
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 11, 2020
HikingGreat!Rocky

Wow...my new favorite trail of all time! Went thru the West gate at just before 7:00am. No traffic. Started up the trail at 7:30. Definitely recommend going clockwise. Not a cloud in the sky! Parking lot at Paradise was wide open (but it was a Monday morning). Some minor snow crossings (no spikes needed) and a stream crossing. No issues with either. The views are simply stellar! Extremely unbelievable views up close of Rainier! Looking south over the range with excellent views of Mt Adams, Mt St Helens and even Mt Hood. Plenty of marmots and a mountain goat. Wildflowers in full bloom! Did not see any crowds until about a mile from the finish at Paradise Visitor Center. Total hike time for us was a little over 4 hours. Parking lot was packed/no spots when we got back.

Lexie Love
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 11, 2020
HikingBugsFeeGreat!IcyRockySnow

One of the most beautiful hikes I’ve been on so far. Many lookout points during this hike; it was good challenge with a steady incline but gave you just a bit of mercy when it leveled out for a bit. There is snow, so make sure you have comfortable, waterproof shoes with support and anything else to make you feel steady. We went on Monday morning at 8am and by the time we were about a mile and a half to the end of the loop it was absolutely packed, even on a Monday. Would highly recommend doing an early hike if your able.

Lilly Martinez
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 10, 2020
Scenic drivingFeeGreat!Snow

AMAZING!! Definitely one of the most beautiful trails I’ve ever hiked. Would definitely visit again. We saw a chipmunk, and 2 Hoary Marmots. Pretty magical place.

Kamal Ahmed
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 10, 2020
Hiking

Incredible! The beauty and prettiness is splendid. We went on a perfect day; completely clear and sunny. In addition to the gorgeous mount rainier, the meadows and heather are at their peak. It’s the best time to be there. This wasn’t my first time going to paradise and Skyline trail and it won’t be the last.

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Yin-Chen Huang
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 10, 2020
HikingBugsFeeGreat!IcyMuddyOff trailRockyScrambleSnowWashed out

It's definitely a beautiful trail! I started at 10:30AM on Aug 10, 2020 (Mon). Had to park at the additional parking lot. The entire trail was classified as strenuous. The view was great! Mt. Adams and Mt. St. Helens were easily seen. Mt Hood is farther but was still visible if one viewed in the correct direction and stayed focused -- it's a bit darker than the blue sky and quite pointy. The west part of the trail up until Panoramic Point was heavily trafficked. The condition of this part was good. I remembered only two snow crossings. I considered it easy to moderate. However I encountered mosquitoes mostly here. The trail condition of High Skyline was poorer, covered with stacks of shattered volcanic rocks and gravels. I didn't wear suitable shoes and because of my bad memory of breaking my arm in Yosemite, I hiked quite slowly. The east part of the trail was poorly maintained, in my opinion. Not only there were several parts of trails totally covered by thick snow, there's a wide stream crossing that one's shoes would definitely get wet. Speaking about the flora and fauna, I saw several munching marmots and chipmunks. The wildflowers were not as spectacular as one can see on Mt. Rainier postcards. There were indeed colorful but they're tiny and not even patchy. The scene at Myrtle Fall was the closest to a postcard prairie photo, still not spectacular.

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