5 Best hikes in Mount Rainier National Park

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Best hikes in Mount Rainier National Park

Hiking in the USA offers a vast array of options, from rugged mountain trails to serene forest paths and breathtaking coastal routes. There are plenty of kid friendly hiking trails across the USA, offering opportunities for families to explore nature together.

With over 260 miles of maintained trails, Mount Rainier National Park is a solid choice when it comes to picking your ideal day hiking destinations outside of Seattle, WA or when passing by during a road trip to San Francisco. Various scenery can be enjoyed during these hikes – from lakes and forests to river valleys alpine meadows. The trails are usually well marked and easy to follow. Designated lunch spots are also available along the trails.

Best time to hike

The best time to visit Mount Rainier National Park is during the summer months. The weather is milder and wildflowers bloom. Rainy days can still occur, so make sure to pack a rain jacket in your backpack. Late June and early September are usually less crowded, so better visit during this time. If you can’t avoid peak season in July and August, try to be there as early as possible to head for a late start (around 5-6pm).

Best hikes in Mount Rainier National Park4

Rampart Ridge Trail

Rampart Ridge Trail can be reached by taking a Trail of the Shadows first, which begins across from the National Park Inn in Longmire. You will be walking through an old forest along the old lava flow. About 2 miles later you will reach a viewpoint overlooking Nisqually River Valley and, weather permitting, view of the mt Rainier itself!

Duration: 3.5 hours; Elevation Gain: 1,350 ft; Distance: 5.2 mi loop

Best hikes in Mount Rainier National Park4

Bench & Snow Lakes Trail

With the constant ups and downs, this trail is not an easy one. However, you will be rewarded with amazing views once you get to the Snow and Trail lakes. The icy peaks of the Tatoosh Range rising high above the lake gave the Snow lake its name. The parking spot for this hike is in Steven Canyon, about 1 mile before Louise Lake and Reflection Lake on the left side of the road.

Duration: 2 hours; Elevation Gain: 700 ft; Distance: 2.5 mi loop

Silver Falls Trail

Starting at the Ohanapecosh Campground, the trail is fairly easy and therefore popular among families with kids. You will see an old grown forest, have a chance to spot wildlife before your reach the final destination – majestic Silver Falls.

Duration: 2 hours; Elevation Gain: 350 ft; Distance: 2.7 mi

Best hikes in Mount Rainier National Park4

Naches Peak Loop Trail

The trail parking is located at Tipsoo Lake picnic area. Naches Peak Loop Trail is an easy walk along the blooming wildflowers with spectacular views of mt. Rainier. The trail is best hiked counterclockwise.

Duration: 3 hours; Elevation Gain: 700 ft; Distance: 4.5 mi loop

Tolmie Peak Trail

Start at Mowich campground and hike out to Mowich lake for some stunning views. It’s a long hike, so take it easy and enjoy the beautiful scenery. Eunice lake offers great views. but your final destination is actually the historical fire lookout tower. Bugs can be pretty annoying, so bring a bug spray with you!

Duration: 4 hours; Elevation Gain: 1400 ft; Distance: 6.4 mi loop

Interested in even more hikes?

Boulder, Colorado is a hiker’s paradise. Why not try some of the best Boulder hikes in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains? With over 200 miles of hiking trails, ranging from easy day walks to challenging climbs, there is a trail for every skill level and preference.

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