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Longmire’s Paradise: Mount Rainier National Park

Longmire’s Paradise: Mount Rainier National Park


Mount Rainier National Park is a form of paradise famous for the wildflower meadows and its splendid view. It is called paradise because when James Longmire’s daughter-in-law, Martha had a first look on the garden, she cried, “Ah what a paradise!” The park’s central visiting center known as the Paradise Jackson Visitor Center is situated in the upper parking area of the National Park.

Mount Rainier National Park is a National Park of United States located in the southeast Pierce Country and the Washington’s northeast Lewis Country. The National Park was recognized in 1899 as the United States’ fifth largest national park. The park is covering an area of around 956.60 kilometers square and if Mount Rainier is included then it will be 4,390 metres. The mountain raises suddenly its elevation from 1,600 feet to around 14,000 feet including the surrounding areas. The highest point of the track in the Cascade Range is the waterfalls, valleys, sub alpine, wildflower meadows, various old growth forests and plenty of glaciers. Volcanoes are usually cloaked by clouds which dump a huge amount of rain and snow on the peak of the mountains every year which hides the view from the crowd which lead to the park.


Mount Rainier is rounded by the Wonderland Trail and is endowed by various glaciers and snowfields which cover an area of 91 kilometre square (around 35 square miles). Mount Rainer National Park has on an average 1.8 million visitors throughout the year. It contains Carbon Glacier which is the largest glacier by volume in the whole the continent (United States) and also the largest glacier by area called as Emmons Glacier. Mount Rainer is a famous peak for mountain climbing with around 10,000 attempts every year with approximately 50% climbing till the highest point. The park encloses terrific sub alpine meadows and old growth forests covering an area of around 370 kilometers square.

Mount Rainer National Park gives an excellent opportunity for activities like hiking, diving and mountain climbing. Mostly roads open for six months from late of the May month to early October, which provide fantastic views of a variety of scenic sites and hiking trails. Usually it takes two to three days for visitors to explore the park.



Another major attraction of Mount Rainer National Park is the visiting centre Longmire. It is located 6.5 miles east of the Nisqually Entrance. The area revoves around the Nisqually River valley at an altitude of 2,761 feet which is in between the Tatoosh Range and the Ramparts Ridge. Longmire is famous for the old growth Douglas fir, western hemlock and the western red cedar. Along with these Longmire is also the location of Longmire Museum, Mount Rainer’s National Park Inn, and the National Park Service Administrative Building in the year 1928, which in today date is known as the Wilderness Information Centre. The only accommodation in the park open is the National Park Inn for all the year.

Longmire is also the most popular visiting place for the tourists of Mount Rainer National Park after the Paradise. In the year 2000, it is found that from the 1.3 million people visiting the National Park, around 38% visited Longmire. Another tourist attraction the Cougar Rock is also only 3 miles away in the north west of Longmire with around 5 or 6 group sites and near about 170 individual campsites in the months between May to September. Longmire is called as the starting point of the famous Wonderland Trail of Mount Rainer National Park.


Sunrise is also an important destination of visitors while visiting the national park. It is a lodge located in the north eastern side of the park. It is the highest point of the park with an elevation of 6,400 feet (1,950 m) which can be reached by the vehicles. Sunshine centre is surrounded by miles of trails all around the place such as Sourdough Ridge and the Mount Fremont.  The lodge can be accessed via turnoff of 10 miles from SR410 near the entrance of White River.

Other developed areas of the Mount Rainer National Park include Carbon River, Ohanapecosh and Mowich Lake. Ohanapecosh is a camping ground, ranger station and visiting centre located near the south eastern part of the park which is around 3miles away from the park boundary. It is located in one of the deep valley in old growth forest with an elevation under 2,000 feet. Ohanapecosh is one and the only developed portion of the National Park which does not have the view of Mount Rainer. Some of the famous attractions of the place are Silver Falls, Grove of the Patriarchs and the Ohanapecosh Hot Springs. Another developing area, the Carbon River is situated in the northwest past of the park from highway 165 and is the only rainforest site at Mount Rainer. There is a campground, a trail towards the Carbon Glacier and a short trail towards the rainforest, which is also one of the smallest glaciers in the United States. Other then the above visiting places, Mowich Lake located near south of Carbon River, is the deepest and the largest lake in the park. The lake encompasses various activities such as hiking, camping and it is the best place for family picnic.


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