I snowshoed at Mt. Rainier a few weeks back with a group of friends on the most gorgeous day. It was what is known as a sun inversion where it’s overcast and foggy in the lowlands (in our case Seattle) and beautiful bright sun up in the mountains! I was so unprepared for sun I forgot my sunglasses … a big mistake when snowshoeing. Luckily Paradise has a convenient little gift shop full of sunglasses options for people like me. Phew.
We stopped by the ranger station for trail recommendations. Some of the girls on our trip had previously done Panorama Point so we opted for Mazama Ridge. The photo above gives you a rough idea of the trail we followed. We started out below the Paradise Lodge and parking lot and then made the steep climb up to the top of the Ridge. It is straight up but the views are incredibly rewarding. Here’s part of our group at the top!
Then we hiked south along the ridge taking in the views of the Tatoosh Range – Pinnacle Peak, The Castle, Unicorn and Boundary Peak. From there we continued into the woods and hiked down to the Reflection Lake loop though we opted to pass the loop and forge on.
So with all that downhill hiking we found ourselves once again climbing. This time climbing back up to the parking lot. It said a mile but I’m pretty sure it was more! After reaching the top it took all our energy just to find our car in the parking lot and make the 2.5 hour drive home.
I also wanted to give an honorary mention to Rattlesnake Ledge because I hiked to the top a couple Fridays back on another beautiful day. You can see the last time I hiked Rattlesnake Ledge here or follow along on my hikes in current time on Instagram (@hollydunning).
Lettering by Holly