Hiking in the pacific NorthWest
More like Pacific Northbest, amiright?
I am Washington born and bred (more specifically, I was born at the University of Washington Medical Center, grew up in Federal Way, attended high school in Tacoma, and made it back to Seattle for college!), which means that I've spent the lat 20 years with the familiar view of Mount Rainier in sight at all times - and I wouldn't have it any other way! My family loves to hike (we've been doing it every summer for years), and I wanted to have a place where I could save the details of all these hikes in case I ever want to revisit them - so that's the purpose of this page! Whether you're looking for a short morning hike or something more involved, I hope these locations can serve as some inspiration for you!
Van Trump Park | Mount Rainier National Park
Anybody who loves chasing waterfalls and doesn't mind rocky terrain needs to make a beeline straight for this park! This was my last hike of Summer 2017 :(( but it's OK because it was absolutely beautiful, and the wispy clouds were a welcome break from the heat and a reminder of fall being right around the corner! The hike was a 6.5 mile loop and although steep at times, it was pretty manageable all the way up.
This hike was the longest hike I did this entire summer - 14 miles to be exact! It was certainly fun and well-worth it, but I highly recommend packing a lot of water and snacks if you want to make it all the way to the field, which is probably even more beautiful when all the wildflowers are in bloom! I highly recommend this hike if you want to see a bunch of waterfalls on the way to the final view!
Honestly, the entire route of this hike is incredibly breathtaking, especially because it was a clear day and there were pretty wildflowers lining most of the hike. It was 6 mile roundtrip, but most sections of it weren't too strenuous - I'd recommend this to anyone!
The best part about this hike was all the wildflowers in bloom! We started seeing flowers from the minute we set foot on the Reflections Lake trail, and they peppered the path all the way to Reflections Lake and throughout the Paradise Loop. The hike was only a 6 mile loop roundtrip with moderate difficulty, so I highly recommend checking it out!
Seriously though, this hike is a A+ if you're looking for beautiful views of wildflowers! As the Visit Rainier page states, there are "plenty of magenta paintbrush mixed in with yellow arnica and lupine in addition to Western pasqueflower in different stages of its life cycle" - even when I was trudging up steep hills in the August sun, the sight of bright orange and pink and purple made me smile and keep pushing forward.
This hike was 7 miles roundtrip, and we got to the lake after a 2 mile trek, which wasn't too bad! If you keep following the path, you pass over Sourdough Gap, which is a beautiful view of Mount Rainier. We did some wildflowers along the way (my favorite part), and it was a pretty manageable difficulty for my dad, aunt and me.
Honestly, I did this hike during Summer 2016 so the details of this hike are a little bit fuzzy - still, I often look back at these pictures and think, "how lucky am I that a place this beautiful is right in my backyard!" This pike was the first time that I ever saw wildflowers, and I remember gasping every time I saw more.