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

    Mount Rainier

    National Park Washington

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    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 »

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Green Lake Trail

Trail route from Carbon River entrance to Green Lake/ NW
Map of the Green Lake Trail from Carbon River entrance. Use of a topographic map for best the information.

Trail Description:

Distance, round-trip:

9.6 miles

Elevation gain:

1000 feet

Hiking time, round-trip:

4.5 hours

Wilderness camps:


Green Lake is one of the park's most serene mountain lakes. It is surrounded by forest but offers partial views to the south of Tolmie Park.

The trail begins at Carbon River entrance. Three miles in, a trail at Ranger Creek leaves the roadbed sothward toward the lake. It leads through a forest of massive old-growth trees on its moderate ascent to the lake. One mile from the trailhead is Ranger Creek Falls. Beyond the falls the trail ascends another .8 mile to Green Lake.

Along the

Eight hundred year-old Douglas fir trees can be found along the route to Ranger Falls. The falls and the lake are unique attractions.


Camping is not permitted due to the lake's popularity with day hikers and its proximity to the trail. Crosscountry camping opportunities exist in other areas for skilled minimum impact backpackers who seek a primitive camping experience. Permits are required for camping. Permits and current trail conditions are available park-wide from wilderness information centers, ranger stations, and visitor centers. Fires are prohibited. No pets on trails. Treat water before drinking.

Did You Know?

Magenta Paintbrush

The Paradise meadows were once home to a golf course, rope tows for skiers, an auto campground, and rows of tent cabins. All of these activities damaged the meadows, as does walking off-trail. Management practices have changed over the years, and we now protect and restore our precious subalpine meadows.