Rainier National Park
This massive mountain dominates the scenery and is so large it creates its own weather system. We arrived on the 25th September to find the Sunrise Visitor Centre was already closed, much to our surprise. We had no idea of how extreme the weather is here and how quickly it changes.
The campsite we had planned to stay in was
bypassed as the
visitor centre was closed. We still saw all the beautiful views
‘down’ the park, with ears registering the pressure changes, to
would have been better had we known the weather forecast; a hint
frantic boarding up of the lodge and visitor centre, the
forecast was for a
severe snow storm, to below the level of our first chosen
The following day was rainy, cold and some people were wearing shorts and T-shirts!! We took in the park film, exhibits and the museum in Longmire, but decided we had to move south again. We did not do our visit as planned and hope to return here, when the forecast is not for yet more snow. At the lower levels with plummeting temperatures due the next day we needed to leave.
John Muir said of this NP; “Of all the fire mountains which, like beacons, once blazed along the Pacific coast, Mount Rainier is the noblest.”
Even entering the park is a step back in time as the sign, buildings and bridges, all built in the 1800s are beautiful rustic architecture (and National Historic Landmarks). This park is stunning in many ways, only the weather is chasing us out.
The Paradise visitor centre and Inn are open all year round, which is why doors are 8-10ft off the ground/ The Rangers here run snowshoe lessons in winter. While chatting to another RV homer he tried to convince us that being able to step 10ft in one go while wearing snowshoes was worth the cold.