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I recently had the pleasure of spending several days in Mt. Rainier National Park.  What an incredible place!  It was also the first opportunity I’ve had to use my brand new Senior Pass for entrance into National Parks – and you know, I was so excited!  I left my little trailer back in Oregon in its “foster driveway” where it’s been well Nisqually Entrance - got my brand new Senior Pass all ready to go!looked after by Mackenzie and her mom, Debbie, and just threw my tent and sleeping bag in the back of my car and headed north.  I really didn’t expect to stay more than overnight, let alone three days, so I went unprepared, without enough food or clean (or even dirty!) clothes for more than a few days – otherwise I’d probably still be there.

The weather was fantastic – a little bit of low clouds the first day and then the brilliant blue sky came out… and stayed out!  Mt. Rainier was gorgeous: the wildflowers were in bloom everywhere; the waterfalls were wonderful (there are over 150 waterfalls in the park alone!); the trails were calling my name; the birds and other critters were peeping and chirping (being bear country, and ever aware that there was only a thin piece of nylon between me and a big furry animal looking for dinner or a late-night snack, I made sure all my food items, toothpaste, deodorant, etc. were closed up tight in my car every night!*); the sound of the rivers running all night long made for perfect sleeping conditions; the cell towers were non-existent and to paraphrase an old cliché, the silence was very golden.  And now, I can’t wait to go back!

Hope you enjoy the photos!  There are lots more pics in the photo album – just click on the link at the end. I’ve also included some other links for park information if you’d like to know more about this amazing national park or just want to plan your own trip.  Maybe we’ll meet up for hot chocolate over the campfire!

Little Creek
Little Creek – first night’s dispersed camping; just outside my tent
Fireweed near my first night’s camping spot
Wildflowers with Mt Rainier hidden
Wildflowers in bloom everywhere you looked – Mt. Rainier is still hidden in the clouds up ahead.
Inside the Visitor Center
The roof beams and cross members in the Paradise Visitor Center
Yellow wildflowers
Yellow wildflowers (arnica?) near my first night’s camping spot
Pink fuzzy wildflowers
Rosey Spirea – a member of the rose family
View from the road
A spectacular view of the mountain!
Wildflowers with Mt Rainier in the clouds
More wildflowers… everywhere! Mt. Rainier in the clouds
Bear grass wildflowers
Bear Grass – a member of the lily family
Myrtle Falls
Myrtle Falls from the viewpoint on the trail – about a half mile from Paradise Visitor Center
Mt Rainier peeking out through the clouds
Mt Rainier peeking out from the clouds
We are in bear country!
Don’t forget – we are in Bear Country! Signs everywhere serve as vivid reminders.*
White River
View of the White River – second night’s campsite just across the road on the right
My little campsite visitor
My little campsite visitor – probably a Yellow Pine Chipmunk – looking for crumbs 🙂
250,000 miles!
…and, oh yeah, my vehicle turned over 250,000 miles on the way out of the park! Yahoo!

Yes, indeed, a few days in the mountains was exactly what I needed. I celebrated the one year anniversary of Dinah leaving Planet Earth along with Gracie Kitty’s unexpected leaving this past spring. There’s nothing quite like the mountains, along with wildflowers, creeks and rivers, to get a little perspective back into one’s life.  I highly recommend it.

Additional Links:

Mt. Rainier National Park

Hikes in Mt. Rainier

Mt. Rainier Wildflowers

To see more photos of my trip to Mt. Rainier, CLICK HERE

*While I was at Mt. Rainier, there actually was a report from the ranger of a bear tearing into a tent up on Sunrise at the backcountry campsite area, going after the tube of toothpaste that someone thought was safe to leave inside the tent. Guess they won’t be doing that anymore!

Mt. Rainier National Park
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18 thoughts on “Mt. Rainier National Park

  • August 20, 2014 at 10:05 am

    Wonderful photos! New shoes too!
    Your Encinitas REI buddy..

    • August 20, 2014 at 10:52 am

      Thank you, Norma! I love these Keens! And to think they were on clearance 🙂 Better yet! Thanks for reading and leaving a comment – Mt. Rainier is so awesome, I could live there…

  • August 20, 2014 at 11:17 am

    A breath of fresh mountain air just looking at the pics, Lois. Thanks for sharing them.

    • August 20, 2014 at 11:29 am

      Thanks, Marilyn! It’s a wonderful place to visit, that’s for sure. Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment 😀

  • August 20, 2014 at 1:07 pm

    Lois, you’re skills with that camera are AMAZING! You could be on the staff at National Geographic magazine. Spectacular! Thanks for sharing. xoxoxox

    • August 20, 2014 at 6:08 pm

      Thanks, Linda! It’s just my iPhone 5 – it’s the amazing camera! Someone on FB recommended a “snap-on” lens and I think I might try it… the phone is so lightweight and portable, it’s hard to consider carrying another camera 🙂 Thanks for reading and commenting!

  • August 20, 2014 at 1:57 pm

    Looks stunning the wild flowers are so beautiful on rainier. Have a good time and be safe!

    • August 20, 2014 at 6:09 pm

      Kimberly, I can’t imagine why I’ve never been to Rainier before this! It’s so close and so spectacular – I think I might have moved to Packwood if I’d known… thanks for reading and leaving a comment – I love comments!

  • August 20, 2014 at 4:29 pm

    I don’t care what anyone says . . . the PNW is the most beautiful place in the US. Yeah, I know, there are other places that are beautiful . . . but the PNW is on a grand scale. Your pictures are fantastic. I have never been there. But, virtually, I’ve been to many places because of YOU – thank you, Lois.

    • August 20, 2014 at 6:11 pm

      Nancy, the PNW is certainly a gorgeous place to be and I’ve enjoyed my time living here. The amount of rain it gets makes it a wonderful place for flowers and waterfalls and no one can dispute that there are lots of both of them here. Thanks for stopping by and commenting – I appreciate it!

  • August 20, 2014 at 5:15 pm

    Such beautiful pictures Lois! I have always loved the mt Rainer area!

    • August 20, 2014 at 6:12 pm

      Thanks, Debbie! I’m glad I finally went… what a magnificent place! Thanks for reading and commenting!

    • August 20, 2014 at 7:48 pm

      You’ll love it, Al! There was only one other dispersed campsite being used on the south side of the park where I was and they were several miles away from me down a different road – lots of open spots! I was amazed at how few people where out there.

  • August 21, 2014 at 5:26 pm

    Love your pictures and your stories. I will get there some day.

    • August 22, 2014 at 9:53 am

      Yes, you will, Linda! Thanks for reading and commenting – hope to see you in January!

  • August 22, 2014 at 7:35 am

    This is a national park we have yet to see. Thanks for the tour and lovely images. 🙂

    • August 22, 2014 at 9:55 am

      LuAnn, I think it’s one of the nicest national parks in the PNW. Wonderful visitor’s centers, lots and lots of hiking trails for all levels, over 150 waterfalls! Hope you make it there soon! Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment 😀

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