Those who know me know that I absolutely adore Washington State. Washington fosters this connection to nature that I have not seen anywhere else in the states. I have gone on many adventures in Washington over the years, primarily with my aunt and cousins. This post summarizes some of the places in Washington that I love the most.
Even though I have visited Washington since I was in 8th grade, I have never been to the mountains. It wasn’t until the summer of 2022 that I discovered the Alpine Lake Wilderness and visited Mount Rainier.
Mount Rainier is a huge national park and volcano. At the time, I did not put in effort to figure out where we should hike or how to get there, so we went with a tour company. Unfortunately, this was a bad idea for two young, fit adults. Asher likes to say that I signed him up for the junior geriatrics hiking league because we were the youngest on the tour. Everyone else was retired and in the 60s. For those who want to go to Rainier and get some good snowshoeing in, go to Paradise Vistior Center before the end of July. Rent the appropriate equipment from REI and rent a GigShare car. Use AllTrails to help you stay on the Skyline Trail and you will be amazed. We saw some wildlife near mrytle falls, but very few.
This hike was a spontaneous add-on to our itinerary. We went with a couple of interns from MSR to see a cool view of Mount Rainier. It was a solid hike, a lot of elevation gain to get to the overlook. I recommend using AllTrails to find your way since there are many other trails branching off from this one and can get confusing. We did see a deer, but no other wildlife.
This hike was by far my favorite. It actually came across my Instagram feed one day while we were in Seattle and we decided to rent a ZipCar and check it out. I highly recommend downloading the trail on AllTrails to not only follow the trail offline, but also to read all the tips left from other hikers. For example, bring bug spray on this hike because the bugs get pretty bad. Bring 2.5 liters of water for every person going on the hike (we didn’t bring nearly this much and wish we did). Start hiking before noon so you have time to hang out at the lake at the top. Lastly, the hike will be longer than what AllTrails advertises because you will have to park you car much further down the service road and walk a mile or two to the trailhead. I also wish I had trekking poles for this hike and a water resorvoir in my backpack. We saw a mountain goat and these are very common to see up near the lake.
Olympic National Park
Of course there a lot of tide pools on the coast of Washington and Oregon, however I have never been to one before. The first tide pool I went to was at Rialto Beach which is a part of Olympic National Park.