My first national park in Washington was Mt. Rainier, which is one of the iconic landscapes of Washington, raising above 14,000ft. As the most glaciated peak in the United States (minus Alaska), Mt. Rainier spans six different rivers. The picture above was taken at dawn from Reflection Lakes.
Another morning, I got up at daybreak and hiked up to Panorama Point from the Paradise Inn area. The hike was perfectly lit and timed. I love being alone on the trail while everything around me starts to awaken. The high alpine meadows were in full bloom. There were deer everywhere, all of which seemed to barely notice me. I ran into two different deer with their two fawns, saw marmots scurrying back and forth, everything was bristling with the new life of summer.
I camped at Ohanapecosh campground, and discovered a great trail behind the sites. The Washington’s forests are flush with soft green moss and trickling waters.
Mt. Rainier is only about a 2 hour drive from Seattle, a wonderful escape to wilderness close to the bustling city.