Trails and Backcountry Camp Conditions

 
Panhandle Gap July 31, 2022
Panhandle Gap July 31, 2022

Devon Funt

Mount Rainier can receive 700 or more inches of snow each winter. When spring comes to the mountains it is a very busy time for Park Rangers. The previous fall usually brings the rainy season which causes damage to trails and camps by raging waters, high winds and falling trees. All this damage gets covered by 10-20 feet of snow, and there it sits until melt-out which often does not occur in earnest until late June or early July. The snow usually starts melting in high volumes, causing more damage to trails and camps. The Trail Crew may have to clear hundreds of trees from the trails each year. Replacing footlogs and bridges is also a major project. Footlogs are also prone to being washed out anytime there is a prolonged period of rain regardless of the season.

Wilderness Rangers and Trail Crew members are out and about early in the season trying to assess the damage. Given the vastness of the trail system and the volumes of snow, this is a large task. As we get reliable information on the status of a trail, a section of trail or a backcountry camp, that information will be posted here on the website.

Please note that many park roads and facilities close during winter. At any time during the year the weather can change quickly and unexpectedly. Always check current weather conditions before heading out on a trail.

 

Backcountry Trails and Camp Reports

Trail and backcountry camp conditions are reported in detail during the summer months only (generally June-September). A Wilderness Camping Permit is required year round for camping or climbing in the park. Always check with Park Rangers for trail conditions before heading out into the backcountry. FIRES ARE NOT ALLOWED in the wilderness at Mount Rainier.

Be prepared for harsh conditions and fast-changing weather. River crossings are prone to washing out, potentially leaving you stranded on one side of the crossing. Always cross early in the day when water levels are at their lowest. Use extreme caution anytime you attempt to ford a river or creek. Expect log footbridges and other river crossings to be washed out during the fall/winter, when powerful rain events are common. These crossings are not replaced until the following spring/summer. Be prepared... mountain weather is good one minute, daunting the next. Learn more about hiking safety.

Check the Northwest Avalanche Center Report and the Mount Rainier Recreational Weather Report before heading out. Avalanche assessment and route-finding skills are needed for many winter activities in the park. Learn more about winter recreation.
Do not leave valuables in your car. While break-ins are infrequent, they do occur.

NOTE: Please note the date for reports and recognize that changes may have occurred since the report. Conditions are updated when there is new information.

Trails in the Carbon River Area

The Carbon River Road to Ipsut Creek Campground is CLOSED at the park entrance because of 2006 flood damage. It is now a five mile hike into Ipsut Creek Campground. Bikes are permitted ONLY as far as Ipsut Creek Campground.

Trail Name

% Snow Cover

Trail Conditions

Update

Summary

The Carbon River Ranger Station is located 5.5 miles past the Mowich Lake turn-off, toward the Carbon River entrance. It is on the left side of the road.

Ipsut Creek Campground is being managed as a backcountry camp. A wilderness permit will be required to camp at Ipsut Creek. Fires and pets are not permitted beyond the point where public vehicles can legally park at the park entrance.
Carbon River & Mowich Area Trails Map

Carbon Glacier Trail 0 Carbon River Trail: 1 mile up from Ipsut Creek There are 2 new River crossings. The first has a good foot log with a hand rail, the second has already been damaged. It is tilted at a 40 degree angle and has water going over one end. There is a 20" diameter fallen log across the river 400' upstream that might be safer. Carbon Glacier Trail: Trail crew has flagged a route from the lower Carbon bridge to where the trail reconnects on the east side of the river. 7/21/2022
Chenuis Fall 0 Bridge is OUT. Crossing is not advised. 7/14/2022
Green Lake 0 Snow free. 8/5/2022
Ipsut Falls 0 Bridge in 8/5/2022
Northern Loop: Carbon River- Windy Gap 0 8/1/2022
Paul Peak Trail 0 6/15/2022
Rain Forest Loop 0 Use caution. Trail washed out in sections. 8/5/2022
Spray Park 10 Little navigation skills required at the high point of Spray Park, dropping into Seattle Park. 7/31/2022
Seattle Park 10 Little navigation skills required. 7/31/2022
Tolmie Peak 1 Snow free up to Eunice Lake, then patchy snow at Eunice Lake. 7/26/2022


Trails in the Longmire Area

The main road to Longmire is OPEN year round.

Trail Name

% Snow Cover

Trail Conditions

Update

Summary Longmire Area Trails Map
Carter Falls (from Cougar Rock Campground) 0 Nisqually bridge is In! 8/5/2022
Comet Falls Trail (Van Trump Park Trail) 0 Bridge below Comet Falls is IN! 7/20/2022
Denman Falls Trail 0 8/5/2022
Eagle Peak Trail 0 Flowers are out and bugs are out! 7/29/2022
Goat Lake Trail (Glacier View Wilderness) 0 Not inside Mount Rainier National Park. Forest Service Road 59 CLOSED. 7/28/2022
Kautz Creek Trail 0 8/6/2022
Lake George & Gobblers Knob Trail 0 7/15/2022
Mildred Point Trail 0 8/6/2022
Mirror Lakes Trail 0 8/6/2022
Narada Falls Trail (Paradise to viewpoint below Narada Falls) 0 7/30/2022
North Puyallup River Trail 0 8/5/2022
Rampart Ridge Loop Trail 0 Mosquitoes are out! 7/9/2022
Rampart Ridge Trail (Upper section from Wonderland Trail to Van Trump Park and Comet Falls) 0 8/6/2022
Round Pass Trail 0 7/21/2022
Saint Andrews Creek Trail 0 7/21/2022
South Puyallup River Trail 0 6/25/2022
Trail of the Shadows 0 8/5/2022
Twin Firs Trail 0 8/5/2022
Tahoma Creek Trail CLOSED DUE TO DEBRIS FLOW AND HAZARDOUS CONDITIONS. THE TAHOMA CREEK HAS TAKEN OVER THE TRAIL. NOTE: This is an unmaintained trail in an area with high risk of geohazards such as flooding and debris flows. These events have occurred frequently in the past and are expected to occur again. There are only remnants of this trail remaining. Navigation is difficult and the route is hazardous. It is NOT recommended to hike Tahoma Creek Trail. 8/5/2022


Trails in the Ohanapecosh Area

Trail Name

% Snow Cover

Trail Conditions

Update

Summary Ohanapecosh Area Trails Map
Cowlitz Divide Trail (Olallie Creek Trail) 0 7/21/2022
Eastside Trail 0

One bridge out 5.6 miles north of the Stevens Canyon TH. As of right now, the stream is still crossable by rock-hopping slightly down stream. Another bridge about 3 miles in is significantly tilted (about 15-20 degrees) but still usable

6/24/2022
Grove of the Patriarchs Trail 0 CLOSED: BRIDGE HAS SIGNIFICANT DAMAGE AND IS CLOSED. 8/5/2022
Laughingwater Creek Trail 0 8/6/2022
Pacific Crest Trail 0 8/5/2022
Shriner Peak Trail 5 .Water flowing about 1 mile below summit as of 7/18 7/18/2022
Silver Falls Trail 0 8/5/2022

Trails in the Paradise Area

The main road to Longmire is OPEN year round. During winter months, the road from Longmire to Paradise closes nightly at the gate at Longmire. Check Twitter for daily road status updates (Twitter account not required to view).

Trail Name

% Snow Cover

Trail Conditions

Update

Summary Paradise Area Trails Map Peak wildflowers now! 8/18/2022
Alta Vista Trail 0 8/18/2022
Dead Horse Creek Trail 0 8/18/2022
Fourth Crossing Trail 0 8/18/2022
Glacier Vista Trail 0 8/18/2022
Golden Gate Trail 0 8/18/2022
High Lakes Loop Trail 0 8/182022
Lakes Trail (Mazama Ridge) 0 8/18/2022
Moraine Trail 0 8/18/2022
Nisqually Vista Trail 0 8/18/2022
Paradise Glacier Trail 0 8/18/2022
Pebble Creek Trail (to the base of the Muir Snowfield) 0 8/18/2022
Pinnacle Peak Trail 0 8/18/2022
Skyline Trail 0 8/18/2022
Snow Lake/Bench Lake Trail 0 8/18/2022
Stevens Creek Trail 0 8/5/2022

Trails in the White River Area

Trail Name

% Snow Cover

Trail Conditions

Update

Summary Sunrise Area Trails Map Sunrise is in peak bloom! 8/5/2022
Burroughs Mountain Trail To First Burroughs (from Frozen Lake) 0 7/19/2022
First Burroughs Mountain LOOP Trail 0 8/10/2022
Burroughs Mountain to Glacier Basin Trail 0 8/10/2022
Crystal Lakes Trail 0 7/11/2022
Crystal Peak Trail 0 7/2/2022
Emmons Moraine Trail 0 8/5/2022
Glacier Basin Trail 0 8/5/2022
Grand Park Trail (via Northern Loop Trail) 0 8/1/2022
Huckleberry Creek Trail 0 8/4/2022
Lake Eleanor Trail 0 8/5/2022
Mt. Fremont Trail 0 7/19/2022
Naches Peak Trail 0 8/5/2022
Northern Loop Trail: Berkeley Park to Windy Gap 0 West Fork crossing is in as of 7/24. New footbridge with handrail is located 50 yards downstream from where the Northern Loop trail meets the river, on both the James and Fire Creek side. A rough reroute trail on both sides lead to the crossing. Visitors should look for striped yellow/white flagging and recent cuts to navigate to the crossing. Water sources are still good. 8/13/2022
Owyhigh Lakes Trail (from White River Road) 0 8/10/2022
Owyhigh Lakes Trail (from Highway 123) 0 8/5/2022
Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) NORTH from Chinook Pass to Sourdough Gap. 0 8/5/2022
Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) SOUTH from Chinook Pass to Laughingwater Creek Trail junction 0 8/5/2022
Palisades Lakes Trail 0 8/4/2022
Silver Forest Trail 0 8/5/2022
Sourdough Ridge Trail West (Sunrise to Frozen Lake) 0 8/5/2022
Sourdough Ridge Trail East (Sunrise to Sunrise Point) 0 8/2/2022
Sunrise Rim Trail 0 7/30/2022
Tipsoo Lake Trail 0 7/30/2022

Wonderland Trail

Trail Name

% Snow Cover

Trail Conditions

Update

Summary Use caution when hiking on steep snow; even a small patch can be icy and slippery between late evening and early morning.
Extra caution should be used when crossing rivers in the time of high water during warm weather days. Refer to Crossing Streams Safely
7/28/2022
Longmire to Indian Henry's 0 No water at Devil's Dream. Get water 1 mile before camp at Fishers Hornpipe or 1/2 mile above. 9/16/2022
Indian Henry's to South Puyallup River 0 8/5/2022
South Puyallup River to Klapatche Park 0 Aurora Lake is almost dry as of 8/8. St. Andrews Lake has plenty of water. 8/8/2022
Klapatche Park to North Puyallup River 0 7/28/2022
North Puyallup River to Golden Lakes 0 8/5/2022
Golden Lakes to South Mowich River 0 South Mowich River Bridge IN!. 8/10/2022
South Mowich River to Mowich Lake 0 North Mowich River Bridge is IN. 8/5/2022
Mowich Lake to Ipsut Creek Campground 0
8/10/2022
Ipsut Creek Campground to Carbon Glacier 0 Lower Carbon bridge is tilted at a 40 degree angle and may have water going over one end. There is a 20" diameter fallen log across the river 400' upstream that might be safer. Trail crew has flagged a route from the lower Carbon bridge to where the trail reconnects on the east side of the river. 8/4/2022
Carbon Glacier to Mystic Lake 0 8/1/2022
Mystic Lake to Sunrise 0 8/18/2022
Sunrise to White River Campground 0
8/5/2022
White River Campground to Summerland 0 7/29/2022
Summerland to Indian Bar 5 Short, steep snow slope up Panhandle Gap. Consistent bootpack up panhandle gap. 8/18/2022
Indian Bar to Box Canyon 0 8/18/2022
Box Canyon to Reflection Lakes

0

CAUTION: SLIDE BETWEEN SYLVIA AND MARTHA FALLS. EXTREMELY LOOSE SOIL ON STEEP SLOPE. Trail crew has etched out a path. 7/29/2022
Reflection Lakes to Narada Falls 0 7/29/2022
Narada Falls to Longmire 0 7/15/2022

Carbon Area Backcountry Camps
The road to Ipsut Creek Campground is closed at the park entrance, secondary to flood damage in 2006. All backcounrty camping requires a permit. Obtain Wilderness Permits at Carbon River just inside the entrance to the park.

Camp Name

% Snow Cover

Camp Conditions

Update

# of Individual/Group sites are show as #I/G, (elevation) Diligently practice proper food storage; never leave food unattended including in a backpack or tent; never leave food in a tent at night.
Summary

The road to Ipsut Creek is CLOSED. The hike is 5 miles from the Carbon River Entrance to Ipsut Creek Campground, which is now managed as a wilderness camp and requires a wilderness permit. There is a new Ranger Station located about 2 miles before the Carbon River entrance. This is the place to get permits and information for the Carbon/Mowich area.The Ranger Station at the entrance is no longer in operation.

Carbon River Camp #4/1 (3195')

0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. 7/16/2022
Cataract Valley Camp #6/1 (4620') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. 7/19/2022
Dick Creek Camp #2/0 (4185') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet Open. 7/15/2022
Eagle's Roost Camp #7/0 (4885') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. 7/19/2022
Ipsut Creek #12/1 (2400') 0 Bear boxes in. 7/5/2022
Mowich Lake Walk-in Camp (4900') 0 Bear box in. 7/25/2022
Mystic Camp #7/1 (5570') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. 7/19/2022
South Mowich River Camp #3/1 (2605') 0 Bear pole UP. Toilet open. 8/5/2022

Longmire/Paradise Area Backcountry Camps

All backcountry camping requires a permit. Obtain Wilderness Camping permits daily at the Longmire Wilderness Information Center (Summer only) or the Longmire Museum (After Columbus Day-Memorial Day).

Camp Name

% Snow Cover

Camp Conditions

Update

# of Individual/Group sites are show as #I/G, (elevation)
Summary Diligently practice proper food storage; never leave food unattended including in a backpack or tent; never leave food in a tent at night.
Devil's Dream Camp #7/1 (5060') 0 Bear poles up. Toilet open. No water at camp. Water 1 mile south at Fisher's Hornpipe Crk, or 1/2 mile above. 9/2/2022
Golden Lakes Camp #5/1 (5130') 0 Bear poles up. Toilet open. 7/28/2022
Klapatche Park Camp #4/0 (5515') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. Aurora Lake Dry. Still plenty of water at St. Andrews Lake. 9/2/2022
Lake George Camp #5/1 (4320') 0 Bear poles up. Toilet open. Mosquitoes and blackflies! 7/28/2022
Maple Creek Camp #4/1 (2815') 0 Bear pole UP. Stevens Canyon road is currently closed. 6/19/2022
North Puyallup River Camp #3/1 (3750') 0 Bear pole UP. Toilet open. 6/25/2022
Paradise River Camp #3/1 (3805') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. 8/5/2022
Pyramid Creek Camp #2/0 (3765') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. Mosquitoes! 7/8/2022
Snow Lake Camp #2/0 (4690') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. Mosquitoes! 7/29/2022
South Puyallup River Camp #4/1 (4000') 0 Bear poles up. Toilet open. 8/5/2022

Eastside Backcountry Camps

Camp Name

% Snow Cover

Camp Conditions

Update

# of Individual/Group sites are show as #I/G, (elevation)
Summary Diligently practice proper food storage; never leave food unattended including in a backpack or tent; never leave food in a tent at night.
Berkeley Park Camp #2/1 (5375') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. 7/27/2022
Deer Creek Camp #2/0 (2950') 0 Bear pole UP. Toilet snow-free. 8/5/2022
Dick's Lake Camp #1/0 (5675') 0 Bear pole UP. Toilet open. 8/4/2022
Fire Creek Camp #3/1 (4300') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. No water at camp, get water in Berkeley Park or West Fork. 9/16/2022
Forest Lake Camp #1/0 (5660') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. 7/22/2022
Glacier Basin Camp #5/1 (5965') 0

Bear barrels in. Toilets open.

7/27/2022
Granite Creek #3/1 (5765')
0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. 7/19/2022
Indian Bar #4/1 (5120') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. 8/10/2022
James Camp #3/1 (4620') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. 7/15/2022
Lake Eleanor Camp #3/1 (5000') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. 7/15/2022
Lower Crystal Lake Camp #2/0 (5450') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. 8/5/2022
Nickel Creek Camp #3/1 (3385') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. 8/5/2022
Olallie Creek Camp #2/1 (3940') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. 7/15/2022
Shriner Peak Camp #2/0 (5355') 0 Bear pole UP. Toilet open. Pack up all needed water. No water on the trail or at summit. It is a hot, exposed hike. 8/18/2022
Summerland Camp #5/1 (5940') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. 7/21/2022
Sunrise Walk-In Camp #8/2 (6245') 0 Bear box in. Toilet open. 8/5/2022
Tamanos Creek Camp #4/2 (5270') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. 8/1/2022
Three Lakes Camp #2/1 (4680') 0 Bear pole UP. Toilet open. 7/27/2022
Upper Crystal Lake Camp #2/0 (5825') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. 7/15/2022
Upper Palisades Lake Camp #2/0 (5835') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. 8/4/2022
White River Walk-in Camp #3/1 (4300') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. 7/15/2022
Yellowstone Cliffs Camp #2/0 (5180') 0 Bear pole up. Toilet open. No water at camp, get water at Windy Gap or near Carbon River 9/16/2022

Last updated: September 16, 2022

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