You may have seen Mount Rainier – the mountain that keeps a sleepy watch over Seattle. It usually pops up in any outside shots of Seattle pictures, or in TV series (yes, I am talking about my favourite Grey’s Anatomy), or movies.
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Rainier is in the Cascade Range and is actually an active volcano, along the North American tectonic plate, just north of Mount Saint Helens. At 14,411 feet, Rainier is the highest mountain/volcano of the Cascades, but actually quite young in geologic terms as it was only formed about 500,000 years (only?!) She is listed as one of the Decade Volcanoes list:
16 volcanoes identified by the International Association of Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earth’s Interior (IAVCEI) as being worthy of particular study in light of their history of large, destructive eruptions and proximity to populated areas.
Source: Wikepedia My friend and I were lucky: we visited on a rare sunny day – and at 30 degrees C, Seattle was undergoing a bout of dry weather – and has been, I’ve been told, for a couple of years (as of 2015), resulting in water shortages. This was evident in how low the rivers were.
Despite this, it was glorious to road trip it out there.
Seattle to Mount Rainier: What awaits you at the National Park?
The National Park was established in 1899 by the U.S. Congress. You can expect numerous hiking trails, various places to stay: inns, opportunities to camp, fish (if you have a permit) or just take a drive around, like we did. Interesting Mount Rainier facts
- The Native Americans referred to Rainier as Talol, Tahoma or Tacoma
- George Vancouver named the mountain its current name, in honour of his friend Rear Admiral Peter Rainier
- On exceptionally clear days, it’s possible to spot Rainier from as far away as Portland, Oregon and Victoria, British Colombia (Canada)
- Roughly five earthquakes are recorded each month at its summit
- It last erupted in 1894
- It can take 2-3 days climbing to reach the summit, and entails traversing the largest glaciers in the United States south of Alaska
- It’s possible to do Seattle to Mt Rainier as a day trip. The journey, by car, is 76 miles (122 km) and takes approx. one and a half hours.
To find out more, visit their official page: Visit Rainier Meanwhile, enjoy my pictures – whet your appetite to go and visit yourself.
I was there a few years ago and the grass was completely yellow! cant believe there is still a drought!!!! beautiful pictures of that great mountain!
I don’t know why but I really had no idea that Mt. Reineir was a day trip away from Seattle. Would love to check this beautiful place out, especiallysince it reminds me of Dante’s Peak. Lol.
Yes – it is a great place to visit.
Yep – possible to do Rainier in a day. It’s possible to go and come back to Seattle in one day, but nicer to stay overnight I think
Interesting that you hit a dry spell. When I was last in Seattle and in the Cascades all it did was rain, rain, rain.
Yes – it would seem when I was there in 2015 that the place had hit a bad dry spell. I think there’s been a lot of rain since though.
I’m fascinated by volcanoes! Sounds like a great day trip, thanks for sharing.
Really liked Mt. Rainier. The view is stunning! We did not get rain but it was still quite cloudy and cold. Still lots of snow when we went, so that limited the trail access. But worth it nonetheless!
Breathtaking views! I would be so glad to make such a trip.
Would love to visit Seattle and Mount Rainer! I find volcanoes so interesting!
I love it there Sabs. I think you would too, if you like nature
Yes – they’re certainly breathtaking views
Interesting: it was bone dry on my visit! Glad to hear you loved it too Patricia
I would love to visit Mt. Rainier, such a beautiful mountain.
I loved it too Amanda
You need to prepare not just physically but also your hiking equipment, especially in winter time. The view is amazing, in winter. Just be careful in the parking lot, because it is so slippery.
I like these “sunny” days at Mt Raineer. When my wife and I visited, it was late June but still cloudy/foggy. We went on the trails anyway and had a great time!
It’s a beautiful place isn’t it