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

    Mount Rainier

    National Park Washington

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  • Nisqually to Paradise delays and Kautz Creek area closure.

    Road construction from the Nisqually Entrance to Longmire. Expect a 30-minute delay, Monday through Friday. Beginning May 29 to mid-July, all services at the Kautz Creek parking and picnic area are closed through the week. Limited parking on Sat & Sun. 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 »

Pinnacle Peak Trail

Trail route from Reflection Lakes, Stevens Canyon, to Pinnacle Peak.
A map of Pinnacle Peak Trail route from Reflection Lakes, Stevens Canyon. Use of a topographic map of the area is recommended.
 

Trail Description:

Distance, round-trip:

2.5 miles

Elevation gain:

1050 feet

Hiking time, round-trip:

2 hours

Wilderness camps:

None

Pinnacle Peak is situated in the middle of the Tatoosh Range at an elevation of 6562 feet, the second highest peak in the range.

Drive east either from Longmire or Paradise on the Stevens Canyon Road to the parking area at Reflection Lakes. The trailhead is on the south side of the road.

The trail begins with a gradual ascent but soon becomes, and remains, a steep climb to the 5920 foot saddle where the trail ends. Hiking boots are recommended since this trail has either a snow or loose rock surface all summer. From the saddle to the top of Pinnacle Peak is a precipitous scramble on loose, unstable rock. Hikers wishing to get to the top should use extreme caution and have proper equipment.


Along the Trail:


On a clear day the spectacular view from the saddle makes this hike well worth the effort! To the north is a dramatic close up view of Mount Rainier and Paradise. To the south, one sees Mount Adams and Mount St. Helens in the foreground and Oregon's Mount Hood on the horizon. This is an excellent trail on which to see pikas and marmots.


Backpacking:


There is no designated camp along this trail nor atop the Tatoosh Range. Crosscountry camping opportunities exist for skilled minimum impact backpackers who wish a primitive experience. Permits are required for camping. Permits and current trail conditions are available at park-wide from wilderness information centers, ranger stations, and visitor centers. Treat water before drinking. Fires are prohibited. No pets on trails.

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.