• Mount Rainier peeks through clouds, viewed across subalpine wildflowers and glacial moraine.

    Mount Rainier

    National Park Washington

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  • Expect delays due to road construction.

    Road construction is underway from the Nisqually Entrance to Longmire. The road has very rough areas. All vehicles should proceed with caution. Mon to Fri expect up to 30 minute delays and slow travel for 7 miles. More »

  • Melting snow bridges and high streamflows create hazards for hikers, skiers, and snowshoers

    Be aware of hidden- and potentially fatal- hazards created by snow bridges and high streamflows on Mount Rainier. More »

Transition Season at Mount Rainier

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Date: October 5, 2011

With the Columbus Day holiday (October 10) rapidly approaching, the next phase of preparing for the upcoming winter season at Mount Rainier begins. Cougar Rock and Ohanapecosh Campgrounds will be open through Monday October 10. the Ohanapecosh Visitor Center, Henry M. Jackson Visitor Center, and Longmire and White River Information Centers will also remain open through that date. After October 10 the road to Sunrise will be closed at the White River Campground gate. The road between White River Campground and State Route 410 will be kept open through Sunday, October 30, weather permitting. Hikers and bicyclists will still have access to the Sunrise Road after October 10.

All public facilities at Sunrise will also be closed as park maintenance personnel must begin the annual job of shutting down water, electrical and heat systems; boarding up facilities to protect them from the winter snows; and placing snow poles to identify road alignments during next spring's road opening. This same process will continue into the fall at White River and Ohanapecosh.

At Paradise, the Henry M. Jackson Visitor Center, Paradise Camp Deli and Gift Shop will go to a winter schedule being open on weekends and holidays only. Visitor Center hours are 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The historic Paradise Inn closed for the season on October 3.

The National Park Inn and General Store and the Longmire Museum are open daily throughout the year, providing visitor information, overnight accommodations, dining, and gifts. To make reservations at the National Park Inn call 360-569-2275, or go online to www.mtrainierguestservices.com. For online information on visitor services and accommodations in the gateway communities surrounding the park go to the following websites: www.visitrainier.com, www.mt-rainier.com, www.staycrystal.com, www.destinationpackwood.com, www.minerallake.com.

Park visitors are reminded that weather conditions can change rapidly in the mountains during this time of the year. Be prepared for inclement weather and possible ice and snow on park roads. 

Effective November 1, all vehicles (including 4-wheel and all-wheel drive) are required to carry tire chains that fit your vehicle, while in the park. 

For additional information, check the Mount Rainier webpage or call 360-569-2211. 

-NPS-

Did You Know?

Winter snow buries the lower floors of the Paradise Inn.

At Mount Rainier, winter snowfall is typically heaviest between the elevations of 5,000 and 8,000 feet. Paradise, at 5,420 feet, receives an average of 641 inches of snowfall (nearly 54 feet) every year, making it one of the consistently snowiest places on Earth of those where snowfall is measured.