Alerts & Conditions

Alerts

Caution


 
Park Notices
Updates about current park conditions. Updates are also posted by MountRainierNPS on Twitter.
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  • Expect construction work on Paradise area trails and please follow posted instructions. Work is focused on the Alta Vista trail, which will have sections closed during the week. All sections will be open on weekends. More on trail conditions.
  • Please remain alert to your surroundings at all times and be aware of geohazards. Report any unusual stream flow or conditions to a park ranger.
  • There are several small wildland fires in and around the area of the park being monitored by park staff.
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Crossing Streams Safely

Many hikers underestimate the power of moving water and some consider their former successful stream crossings as a ticket to the other side. This may not be true. Regardless of your knowledge, skills, and experience use these pointers in making wise decisions when crossing a steam.
  • Your best option may be turning back. If conditions do not look safe or above your skill level, do not try to cross.
  • Do not try to cross water that comes above your knees.
  • Early morning is the best time to cross when river levels are typically at their lowest. Water levels may change by as much as a foot from morning to late afternoon.
  • Look for a place where the river is braided into multiple channels, and cross at the widest part.
  • Before crossing, scout downstream for log jams, waterfalls, and other hazards that could trap you. Locate a point where you can exit if you fall in. Swimming may not be possible in the swift flow or if you are swept against submerged rocks or downed trees.
  • Use a sturdy stick to maintain two points of contact with the ground at all times.
  • Unfasten the belt of your pack so you can easily discard it.
  • Staring down at moving water can make you dizzy. Face upstream and look forward as much as possible.
  • Straddling a foot log may be safer than walking. Consider the consequences of a fall.
  • Your safety is more important than your itinerary. Permits or reservations can be adjusted to accommodate safe river crossings.
Remember, if you hear "boom" noises as boulders or large rocks move around in river, it means the water is STRONG and FAST. In addition to the current knocking you over, you could be hit by rocks moving in the river. Be cautious when deciding where to cross rivers, or if it's necessary to cross at all. Taking these few precautions could save your day...and your life!

Learn more about hiking safety.
 

Planning Your Visit
Conditions can change rapidly on Mount Rainier. Before heading to the park, make sure to check the following:

  • Weather - View the Mount Rainier Recreation Forecast, along with a variety of other weather reports.
  • Webcams - See current conditions for yourself! Webcams at Paradise, Longmire, and Carbon River are live year-round; webcams at Camp Muir and Sunrise are available during the summer season.
  • Road Status - Most roads in the park close for the winter. Open roads can still close at any time due to weather or conditions. Check twitter for road condition updates (account is not required to view).
  • Operating Hours & Seasons - Find out operating dates & hours for park visitor centers, ranger stations, Inns, and other facilities. Many park facilities close for the winter.
  • Trail Conditions - It is recommended to check with a ranger for the most recent conditions before heading out on a trail. You can also call the Longmire Museum between 9:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. at 360-569-6575 for more information.
 
Laws and Policies
Please note several laws and policies relating to Mount Rainier National Park that may affect your visit. The full park compendium is available on the park management page.

Marijuana on Federal Lands
Contact: Chief Ranger's Office - 360-569-6612
Mount Rainier National Park would like to provide clarification regarding the use and possession of marijuana on Federal lands. The recently passed Washington State law, which allows for limited recreational marijuana use under certain conditions, has no bearing on Federal laws which continue to identify marijuana as a Schedule I illegal drug, and prohibit its use. Possession of marijuana or use of any amount of marijuana is still prohibited in Mount Rainier National Park, its facilities, concessions, and campgrounds, and in the surrounding National Forest Lands. Violations are punishable by a fine of not more than $5,000.00 for an individual or $10,000.00 for an organization, or imprisonment for not more than six months, or both (16 U.S.C. 551, 18 U.S.C. 3559 and 3571).

Drones
Launching, landing, or operating an unmanned aircraft (drone) from or on lands and waters administered by the National Park services within the boundaries of Mount Rainier National Park is prohibited (36 CFR 1.5 (a)(1) Superintendent's Compendium).

This restriction is to protect the public from hazards and preserve the park's natural, aesthetic, and scenic values. The use of unmanned aircraft devices, such as Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) or drones, has the potential to interfere with public safety by posing an in-flight hazard to other legal aircraft use in the park. The use of these devices also has the potential to disrupt wildlife by interrupting migration, nesting, mating, and hunting activities to include, but not limited to protected species such as the Northern Spotted Owl, Marbled Murrelets, and Peregrine Falcon, as well as native birds and mammals. This restriction is in accordance with NPS Management Policy 8.2 which prohibits recreational uses that conflict with the scenic, natural, and historic values the park was designated to protect, and the associated activities in which individuals seek solitude and tranquility with an expectation of privacy. 97% of Mount Rainier National Park is designated Wilderness. Launching and landing of UAS's in the park can invite violations to the Wilderness Act, which prohibits the operation of motorized vehicles or mechanized transport.

Last updated: August 9, 2018

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

55210 238th Avenue East
Ashford, WA 98304

Phone:

(360) 569-2211

Contact Us