• 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 »

Discover Wildflowers

Penstemon growing along the road to Sunrise.
Penstemon wildflowers growing along the road to Sunrise.
NPS Photo
 

Mount Rainer's renowned wildflowers bloom for a limited amount of time every year. The "peak" bloom for wildflowers is heavily dependent on weather and precipitation patterns, so accurate predictions are difficult. In most years, many flowers will be blooming by mid-July, and by the first of August the meadows should be very impressive. Frost can occur by late August, but even after light frosts the meadows continue to be very beautiful, thanks to changing leaf colors and seed pod development that take the place of colorful blossoms.

For a better idea of what the wildflowers are doing this year, please see the Currently Blooming section below, which summarizes what's blooming where.

Explore further:

  • Wildflower Guide - Unfamiliar with Mount Rainier's wildflowers? Photos and brief descriptions of some of the common wildflower species can be found in the park's online wildflower guide.
  • Subalpine and Forest wildflower photo galleries
  • Wildflower video gallery - Preview Mount Rainier's blooming wildflower meadows by watching these short clips.

Lupine wildflower just starting to flower.

Early lupine just starting to flower along the Paradise Valley Road. Also look for lupine flowering around the Jackson Visitor Center in Paradise. Photo taken July 7, 2014.

NPS Photo

Currently Blooming - July 28, 2014

Sunrise is not quite at peak bloom, yet the bloom there is more advanced than at Paradise, Lake Tipsoo, Indian Henry's, or Spray Park. The later areas won't be reaching prime bloom for two or three weeks, with some areas still snow covered. At Paradise, look for plenty of scarlet paintbrush from Narada Falls to the lower parking lot, while lupine is thriving around the Jackson Visitor Center. Along Myrtle Falls trail look for many flowers, such as pink mountain heather, valerian, lousewort, magenta paintbrush, buttercup, spring beauty, marsh marigold, and bistort, among others.

Wildflower Reports
  • Mount Fremont Trail (7/9): Pussytoe, Spreading Phlox, White heather, Alpine sandwort, Slender mountain sandwort, Spotted saxifrage, Tufted saxifrage, Western saxifrage, Smelowskia, Drummond's anemone, Martindale's desert parsley, Alpine buckwheat, Newberry's knotweed, Mountain bistort, Kinnikinnick, Spear-fruited draba, Wooly pussytoes, Golden daisy, Cascade wallflower, Fan-leaved cinquefoil, Diverse-leaved cinquefoil, Shrubby cinquefoil, yellow heather, Sibbaldia, Alpine goldenrod, Three-forked artemesia, Lance-leaf stonecrop, Bracted lousewort, Alpine aster, Alpine lupine, Elegant Jacob's ladder/Skypilot, Cusick's speedwell, Small-flowered penstemon, Davidson's penstemon, Showy Jacob's ladder, Silky phacelia, Cliff paintbrush, Magenta paintbrush, Pink mountain heather, Rose root/King's crown, Mountain sorrel, Bird's beak lousewort
  • Carbon (7/10): foam flower, buttercup, twin flower, pipsissewa, salal
  • Mowich Lake (7/10): cow parsnip, buttercup, false lily of the valley, queen's cup, tiger lily, crimson columbine, bluebell, vanilla leaf, coltsfoot (late), sitka valerian, goat's beard, bog orchid (peak), lupine, bear grass, sitka mountain ash, avalanche lilies, corn lilies, marsh marigold.
  • Owyhigh ascending from Eastside trail (7/15): many species- over 40!- flowering, in particular lots of queen's cup, sitka valerian, bugbane, glacier lily, pasqueflower, and magenta paintbrush.
  • Tipsoo (7/16): avalanche and glacier lilies, pink mountain heather, magenta paintbrush, lupine, cinquefoil, yellow violet
  • Sourdough Ridge (7/16): flowers best near Sunrise point, with a great variety including bracted lousewort, buckwheat, red and harsh paintbrush, lupine, bistort, cliff and small-flowered penstemon, and cusick's speedwell.
  • Sunrise (7/19): Nature Trail: There are still patches of snow on the upper section, but flowers starting to bloom, with broadleaf lupine, magenta paintbrush, pink mountain heather, low Jacob's ladder, pasqueflower (transitioning to seedhead), Cusick's speedwell, fanleaf cinquefoil, mountain dandelion, spreading phlox. Emmons Vista: subalpine daisy, bistort, cusick's speedwell, false hellebore, mountain dandelion, pink mountain heather (primarily at first overlook), bluebells (primarily at first overlook), sitka mountain ash, showy jacob's ladder, fanleaf cinquefoil, sitka valerian. Silver Forest Trail: Still the best for wildflowers at Sunrise! pussypaws, spreading phlox, arrowleaved groundsel, lupine, tiger lilies, magenta paintbrush, showy jacob's ladder, cinquefoil, cusick's speedwell, penstemon, sitka valerian, pasqueflower (mostly seedheads), gray's lovage, thread-leaved sandwort, false hellebore, subalpine daisy, bracted lousewort, fleabane, bear grass.
  • Sunrise Rim trail to Shadow Lake (7/20): Tons of Lupine and Paintbrush (Magenta and Orange-colored--see below); Sitka Valerian, Subalpine Daisy, False Hellebore, Thread-leaved Sandwort, Gray's Lovage, Fanleaf Cinquefoil, Spreading Phlox, Showy Jacob's Ladder, Small-flowered Penstemon, Cliff Penstemon, Pasqueflower Seedhead, Pink and White Mountain Heather, Marsh Marigold; also some Cascade Aster near Shadow Lake and on the stretch of trail between Sunrise Camp and the Service Road. Mountain Dandelion also between Sunrise Camp and the Service Road.
  • Paradise (7/21): Myrtle Falls Trail: pink mountain heather, valerian, lousewort, magenta paintbrush, buttercup, spring beauty, marsh marigold, bistort, hellebore, avalanche and glacier lilies; Developed Area: lupine, paintbrush, Jeffrey's shooting star.
 

Mountain Bog Gentian

Mountain Bog Gentian

NPS Photo

Wildflower Photos
The photos featured here are usually taken by park staff and volunteers from all over the park. Share your own wildflower photos in the Mount Rainier Flickr group! Higher resolution versions of wildflower photos are available on Mount Rainier's Flickr page.
Tiger Lily

Tiger Lily

NPS, Chris Roundtree

Plan Your Visit
Paradise
and
Sunrise are two of the main visitor center areas at Mount Rainier National Park. Both areas are well known for their impressive wildflower meadows. The park also maintains dozens of trails perfect for wildflower viewing.

Did You Know?

Floyd Schmoe, Mount Rainier's first full-time Park Naturalist.

Floyd Schmoe was Mount Rainier's first full-time Park Naturalist. In 1923, he launched the park's "Nature Notes", a series of writings on various park-related topics. There are hundreds of editions of the notes in the park's collection, all of which are accessible through the Mount Rainier History & Culture webpage: More...