Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Mt. Rainier, How Many Pictures Can One Take?

Roger here... This post is definitely about our short time at Mount Rainier; however, I must point out that when I asked Dianne (after a Yakima Valley wine tasting excusion) if she wanted to do this post, she said, "You do the Route Manier Post."  Never again will I feel guilt when she insinuates that I might be slurring!  :-).

On to the post.   I have been seeing Mt. Rainier from a distance for a while:  once when  I was in Seattle with my parents, once when we landed in Portland during my nephew's HS graduation, several times recently from the Olympic Peninsula and Seattle.  Now.... We are there.

 We originally intended to spend four days in the Yakima Valley sampling wine.  When we discovered that taking a slightly different route would take us right next to Mount Rainier National Park, we opted to reduce a couple of wine days (we need no more wine) and stop by the national park.  Since arriving in Washington, we have seen iconic mountains floating above the clouds:  Mt. St. Helens, Mt. Adams, Mt. Hood (the perfect cone), Mt Olympus,  and Mt. Baker (the forgotten giant). 

We finally got to see Mt. St. Helens without clouds from Mt. Ranier
What a mistake it would have been to miss Mt. Rainier ---the MOUNTAIN. 

We found a local RV park in Packwood, WA, that was just a few miles from the National Park.   This was not a fancy place, but it had full hook-ups and lots of grassy room for the doggies to relax (and us).  The next morning we walked the dogs and drove a few miles to the national park entrance.

Our first stop took us to a point where a bridge and tunnel intersect.  The bridge spanned a narrow canyon with a raging stream below.

Love the white water.  We learned that glacial melt water is milky looking.

A short trail led to a view of the mountain and the glacier-scraped rock, covered with red lichen.

Returning to the bridge we were able to look straight down to the churning water.

Moving on, the views of Mt. Rainier became more spectacular.

The view from the reflecting lake was especially nice.

A close-up of the glaciers at the top hint at the bluish color of the ice.

When we arrived at the visitors' center, after exploring the exhibits it was time to go off our diets and have lunch --- wraps in front of The Mountain.  (I was good and had a veggie wrap -- D.)

The foreground of this picture was filled with flowers shown in the pictures below.

After lunch, we opted for a short -- but very steep -- hike uphill to a waterfall.  Our first views, as we got even closer to the mountain, were worth the effort.

A few painful steps later brought us to this even more amazing view.  Wow!

The easier trek downhill took us by the Mt. Rainier Lodge.  What a setting to spend the night.

Before ending, here is one more view of Mt. Rainier, this time with the zoom lens.  All of those black specks are climbers heading to the top of the mountain.  Oh, to be young enough to do this!

To answer the question posed in the title; How many pictures can one take of Mt. Rainier?   Certainly more than we were able to post in this blog.

The pet picture of the day shows Bandido relaxing in the shade.


klbexplores said...

Oh, to be young again??? In my youth my husband wanted to climb a mountain. Silly me, I trained and trained. We climbed Mt Adams which is an easier(?) safer climb. It was a lot like climbing stairs for ten hours with 20 minutes of the most breathtaking views imaginable. The pain in my legs was also unimaginable! But oh the views of a lifetime..... No more mountains for me!!

MsHeyduke said...

Beautiful pictures!