It's hard to believe that we have lived here for 9 years and haven't yet camped on Mount Rainier. We have gone up during the summer for some hiking and in the winder for some sledding a few different times over the years...but hello, it is one of the most gorgeous parks in the United States...I was determined to camp there! We had to get reservations about 9 months in advance. I knew I wanted to go mid-August during peak wild flower season. The park is gorgeous year round, but it is extraordinary in August. A photographer's dream. It reminds me a of Yellowstone in terms of the traffic, variety of people and languages spoken, etc....It is a must-do!
We convinced Trevor's mom and stepdad to join us...all the more fun when Grandma and Grandpa are around!
We pulled in late Friday night...set up in the dark at the Cougar Rock campground on Mount Rainier. Typical Dalley style right there. And we spent all day on Saturday up at Paradise (that's the literal name of the section of the park we stayed in...and quite fitting, actually!).
We ended up on about a 5 mile loop (intended to go only about 2....but so worth all those switch backs for the view at the top!) The kids did great. Mild complaining from the older two. And Rylan was a champ, he practically ran the entire thing.
The wild flowers did not disappoint. I think we missed the 'peak' by about a week...but they were still unbelievably gorgeous.
We even found some snow! It was perfect hiking weather...upper 60s...but not warm enough to melt these small glaciers.
Notice our awesome hiking footwear. Remember it was supposed to be a short hike?!
Back at camp we played some dominoes and made an easy dinner.
Grandma Judy brought this yellow watermelon and the kids thought it was crazy! It tasted just as good as a red one!
It's definitely on our list of places to return to. Can't beat that scenery only 1.5 hours from home!