Week 161 - Mt.Ranier WA - 09-13-2009

Ruminations from Rainier,

Oh, yawn, another week of seeing God's incredible creation!  This week we visited Mt. Rainier National Park.  It's just another park filled with beautiful mountains, streams, lakes and trees.   But it is gorgeous!

Leaving Lake Chelan we traveled along the beautiful Columbia River to Leavenworth, Washington.

Leavenworth is a darling town with a German motif.  This miniature golf course has 18 all natural putting holes.

The tourist-focused downtown is very cute as are the young ladies strolling the walkways.

The town park and the Kestrel wine tasting room.

Lunch was great at the Munchen Haus and then on to Ellensburg . . .

where we discovered the nice E & J RV Park with nice amenities.

From Ellensburg we head south to Yakima and west toward Mt. Rainier.

Just short of the Southeastern entrance to Mt. Rainier, we found this beautiful dry camping spot.

Mt. Rainier is the centerpiece of the National Park.  The mountain is an active "stratovolcano".  Active is in the eye of the beholder.  Mt. Fuji in Japan is also an active stratovolcano but its last eruption was in 1708.  Mt. Rainier last erupted in 1854.

The park is 368 square miles with just three roads into the park.  1) This is Hwy 706 the main road taking you from the SE Nisqually entrance the SW Longmire entrance. 2) Louise Lake as seen from Hwy 706.

This canyon has a glacier-water filled stream.  This "stream" in 2006 became a roaring river when 18 inches of rainfall fell in a 48-hour period.  The damage from the flood closed the park for six months for clean up.

On our maiden voyage in 2006 we met Jerry and Judi at Zion River RV Park, just outside of Zion National Park.  Jerry and Judi are avid hikers and took Ellen with them each day as Pete worked :-( .  We came to Mt. Rainier to see them and it was no surprise that our first few minutes with them was a hike in the old growth forest near Longmire.

Jerry, who on work days drives the employee shuttle into the park, took us on a personal tour.  Mt. Rainier is visible at almost every turn.

1) Christine Falls 2) Narada Falls (much taller than the photo shows).

The Paradise Inn was built in 1916 with 121 rooms.  You can rent a small 2-bed room w/o a bath for $104.00 per night.  Ellen and Jerry plan the route for our hike in the park.

Our hike on the Skyline Trail was the steepest climb we have ever taken.  The reward at Panorama Point was beautiful views.

1) Jerry snapped this photo for us at Panorama Point facing south.  2) After a great time with Jerry and Judi who had to work on the following day we headed off to the Elks at Kelso-Longview, Washington.  They treated us to a great BBQ dinner.

Next week we head to Newport, Oregon to visit John and Gloria.  We met them, also on our maiden 2006 voyage, and have communicated with them by email but not seen them since November 2006.  We are looking forward to the visit.

Until next week, be blessed and be beautiful!

Love, Pete and Ellen
Photos from Sep 2009

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