Seattle is famous for its rainy weather, but that doesn’t mean you have to stay indoors while you’re visiting. Active vacations are the best kind — and whether you’re looking for an extreme adventure or a leisurely wander through a scenic footpath, there is something for everyone near Mount Rainier National Park in Washington.
Oh, and don’t forget to put some thought into your post-adventure accommodations in Seattle — after all that exploring, you’re going to want a comfortable place to put up your feet and relax. Settling in at a good hotel with a nice shower, warm food, a relaxing environment, and maybe even an adult beverage will provide the perfect ending for your foray into nature.
Here are four of the top things for all levels of adventurers who are interested in exploring the area.
Climb Mount Rainier
It would be kind of a moot visit to Mount Rainier National Park if you didn’t take at least a day to try and climb Mount Rainier itself. That doesn’t mean you’re expected to power your way to the peak, as only about half the people who set out to conquer this mountain successfully reach the top. If you’re in for a physical challenge, climbing this mountain should definitely be on your to-do list (plus, you get some serious bragging rights if you succeed).
Explore the Grove of the Patriarchs
For the woodsy explorer, one great activity in the park is the Grove of the Patriarchs loop trail. Clocking in at just over a mile, the Grove takes about two hours to hike and has some seriously fantastic views. Named after the massive, ancient evergreen trees that surround the trail, the grove is a great hike for the adventurer who doesn’t mind feeling a little small, both physically and emotionally. The beauty of this wooded trail is definitely a must-see.
Check out the Wildflowers
If you’re looking for something a little less physically strenuous — even adventurers need a break once in a while, after all — Mount Rainier National Park is known for its beautiful fields of wildflowers. If you happen to be there during the blooming season, you’re not going to want to miss out on this view. It’s a sensory adventure if ever there was one.
If your visit doesn’t line up with the blooming season, though, don’t worry — you’ll just have to visit again. The park’s website is updated every year with the best months to see the wildflowers.
Hike the Skyline Trail
After resting up seeing some beautiful flowers, you’re probably ready for something a little more intense. The 5-mile Skyline Trail provides adventurers with a stellar view of Mount Rainier itself as well as the Nisqually Glacier — and about four and a half hours of activity.
After you finish these hikes, you’re definitely going to want to give yourself a pat on the back for a job well done and relax — maybe even with a glass of wine.