WA – Mount Rainier National Park, Sunrise (Sourdough Ridge/Dege Peak) (July 2021)

Joan and I were giddy with joy from our last two days spent in Rainier alpine zone and couldn’t resist pushing our luck. As we joked, this will be another rest day for Jan. It was my 7th day in a row of hiking and I sure didn’t want to risk a setback, but . . . it’s impossible to say no to such opportunities. We were in the right place at the right time! So back to Sunrise we went. This time we took the Sourdough Ridge Trail to the east, rather than west as previous day (link).

Early morning light on the Sourdough Trail. The mound in the background is First Burrough we’d hiked the previous day.

This meadow kept us smiling. This is probably the largest display of Dr. Seuss mop heads I’ve ever seen (pasqueflowers).

Even the birds found these plumes worthy of a stop over. A birder informed me this is a Pine Siskin.

The asters brightened the meadows. Sunrise lodge is in the valley. This photo was taken at 7:30am. Within an hour the parking lot and road will be packed.

My view from Dege Peak.

This was my turnaround spot while Joan continued on to eventually drop 1,000 feet to the Lakes Trail which included Sunrise and Palisades Lakes. We couldn’t decide if the haze was smoke or clouds, but it burned off later in the day so clouds seemed to win.

The view into the lakes basin from Dege Peak.

These yellow blooms seemed to fit the Dr. Seuss theme.

I finally found a butterfly willing to sit for a portrait.

I couldn’t help but wonder if we were in for a weather change.

I love how the Sourdough Ridge trail showcases varied geology as well as provides amazing views of the mountain.

The marmots loved the lupine. This guy was taking large bites. YUM!

I found more Sky Pilots (Jacob’s Ladder).

When I was done lollygagging on Sourdough Ridge and the Nature Trail high route, I visited the Emmons Glacier vista to learn more about this largest-in-the-nation glacier.

Yes indeed it was another zero. Ha another non-rest rest day. Ok friends might consider it a zero or nero but it was plenty of work for me.

I added a solar shower to my car camping kit. We’d fill it in the morning and let it heat on my dashboard and then shower in camp. This was the only time we had neighbors and had to erect a bit of a privacy curtain, otherwise we found sheltered areas near our campsite. We survived 11 days without a real shower! Being able to rinse off the sweat and dust before bed made sleeping much better, although this night I had a pesky mouse in my house who just didn’t want to leave or die.

DATE(S) HIKED: July 27, 2021


Other Jaunts in Washington (link) including the Wonderland Trail (link)

WA – Mount Rainier National Park, Sunrise (Sourdough Ridge/Sunrise Rim Loop) (July 2021)

After the previous day’s hike (link) where we repeatedly said WOW WOW WOW, Joan and I couldn’t resist another day at Mt Rainier. With a newfound confidence after hiking a trail rated strenuous, I was happy to test another. This time we started from the Sunrise area. Once again we got an early start and were rewarded with front row parking. Our first objective was Frozen Lake along the Sourdough Ridge Trail.

The Sourdough Ridge trail toward Frozen Lake. My kind of WOW! Oh how I love above tree line traversing trails.

I was feeling a bit fatigued as this was my 6th day in a row to hike, so I sent Joan off to hike to the Mt Fremont lookout while I enjoyed lake views and watching people, marmots and mountain goats.

The white specks are a large herd of mountain goats and if you look close you’ll see lots of humans as well. Since I’ve seen plenty I stuck with the plan to rest while Joan was hiking up to the Mt. Fremont lookout.

Our next objective was Burroughs Mountain. I’m curious about the names, First Burroughs, Second and Third.

I hiked to First and sent Joan up Second. Of course I wanted to go but I also wanted plenty of recovery time to finish the hike, as well as hike again the next day.

From First Burrough I had a great view back at Mt Fremont Lookout where Joan hiked while I rested at Frozen Lake. Notice how the trail drops behind the ridge to continue onto the lookout, very deceptive from my limited view while waiting at the lake.

I never mind resting when I have views like these.

Looking back at First Burrough (the flattish ridge).

We completed our hike by making a loop with views of Emmons Glacier, which has the largest surface area of any glacier in the contiguous United States.

Shadow Lake

Yep bears sh** in the woods!

The downhill was tough. My hips and quads were getting quite the workout controlling my descents. But thankfully the knee was performing admirably.

It was another WOW day! The Sunrise area is drier than Paradise leading to fewer wildflowers and a lot more dust, but those views just can’t be beat.

DATE(S) HIKED: July 26, 2021


Other Jaunts in Washington (link) including the Wonderland Trail (link)