Early morning summer hike to Comet Falls



3.8 miles

Elevation Gain

900 ft

Route Type


Added by Jared Blitz

If you're in the southwestern section of Mt. Rainier this is a can't miss, fairly easy hike to a 320ft waterfall. The fog cover in the early morning gives it a very quiet and creepy mystique.

Comet Falls is a well-maintained, 3.8 mile soft dirt trail with a steep initial climb for the first half mile or so, then starts to level off for the next mile and a half. It was the first time I had been to Rainier, so I hit the trail at 7am because there looked to be maybe 10 parking spots in total. The trail is so green it feels like a rainforest, especially when the dense fog hasn't burned off. You come across a small waterfall to your right before you cross a makeshift bridge (not pictured) made out of a log, which then takes you up a hill that gives your first glimpse of the massive Comet Falls straight in front. The trail extends beyond Comet Falls and takes you up a brutal, never ending stairway that leads to Van Trump Park, which gives you a view of Mt. Adams and Mt. St. Helens. Good luck seeing them if you have fog, however. Continuing on leads you 5.6 miles round trip with a 2000 ft elevation gain.

When I returned around 10:30-11am the parking lot was jammed with a lot of other cars blocking the road, hoping to take the next open space.

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