There is amazing wildlife, bathrooms (including a solar bathroom mid-hike) at camp and tons of camping area to choose from. A little side note is that the snow is really fun to slide down.

Pack your sunglasses because this is one snowy hike! Camp Muir is a perfect camping or extended day hike destination for anyone who wants to experience the enchantment of Mount Rainier without committing to the summit. Starting at the Paradise trailhead at almost 4700 feet up, a steep and extremely populated trail during the summertime takes you up to Pebble Creek, where the snow trek officially begins.

There's a lot of wildlife around the trail. I spotted a family of dear and a whole lot of marmots, who come out to sunbathe during the summer months. You might also notice the mountains letting out a deafening moan; a sign of glacial movement. Don't let this scare you like it scared me!

The relentless slope brings you to Camp Muir at around 10,100 feet. Most of the elevation gain involved in this hike is climbing up snow. I was able to make it to camp in some non-waterproof trail shoes, but it was pretty brutal on my feet; definitely not recommended.

Make sure to pack plenty of water and a lunch and insulation layers as the wind can get harsh at the top. The views are breathtaking; you can see Mount. St. Helens, Mount. Adams, and Mount. Hood all very clearly above the Tatoosh Mountain Range. The highlight of this trip, however, was glissading down the snow on the trash bags we brought on our way back. There are literal tracks from where people have sled down repeatedly and have carved out almost half-pipe lanes. What a fantastic end to an adventure!

Pack List

  • Water
  • Sunglasses
  • Warm clothing
  • Camera
  • Trekking shoes
  • Sun protection
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RT Distance 8 Miles
Elevation Gain 4640 Feet
Activities Backpacking, Hiking
Skill Level Advanced
Season Summer
Trail Type Out-and-Back
Features
Bathrooms
Easy Parking
Scenic
Wildflowers
Wildlife

Reviews

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Overall rating: 

One of a kind

Truly something to be said about being at 10,000 feet on Rainier. One of the most amazing experiences I've had, and I wish we had more time to explore. If you choose to hike this, be smart! Weather moves in fast and without warning on Rainier. Wear hiking boots, take your time, bring a delorme, check government weather radars, and make sure everyone in your party is in good physical condition. I consider myself to be extremely fit, and I was sore for about a week after this hike.

It's a lot of snow to tackle, but the views are so worth it.


Please respect the places you find on The Outbound Collective.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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