Mount Rainier National Park dominates the skyline of Seattle, Washington. Many visitors are attracted to its majesty, expanding their travel ideas to include a two fold trip or vacation their and drive southwest to experience its neighbor, Mt. Hood.
Mt. Rainier National Park's roads are winding, passing through communities who choose to live dangerously close to this dormant (sleeping) volcano. As the road rises up, get out before entering the winding mountain passes to snap a shot of Seattle in the distance. Then drive further up the highway; make sure you stop at the varied information centers enroute, four in total.
Start your trip early. Stick to clearly marked routes and avoid former logging roads because avalanches and mud/volcanic debris slides are not uncommon. Rainier is a volcano and experiences frequent tremors. However, it is vital to get to the northeastern side by sunrise because the view is out of this world. Some of the best views of the Emmons Glacier can be taken from this vantage point, and as the morning light increases, travelers are rewarded with a sudden burst of alpine colors – pink flowers, lush green grassy outcrops and dazzlingly white ice and snow. Don't forget your camera!