In the last post I told you of our 4th of July adventure at Mt Rainier National Park, which included a ridge hike at Sunrise and a forest hike through the Grove of the Patriarchs on the Ohanapecosh River. I will complete the story with the second half of our day and a much shorter but lovely walk at Box Canyon and a stop by one of the most famous views of the Mountain at Reflection Lakes.
After our hike at the Grove, we continued south and west on the Stevens Canyon Road. Neither of us can remember taking this way before so we enjoyed fresh and new vistas of Mt Rainier. Oh yes we did!
Here we stopped to walk the short trail to view the deep canyon carved by the Muddy Fork of the Cowlitz River. The area also reveals what is left behind when a glacier retreats: polished slabs of rock where lichens and mosses slowly take root, eventually decomposing into soil to support new forest. Brilliant blue delphiniums also blanketed the area.
It’s hard to realize the depth here, but the rushing water is 180 feet below.
Continuing on the Stevens Canyon road, we were led to the beautiful sub alpine Reflection Lake, which proved true to its name.
After a full day, we exited through Longmire on the southwest side of the mountain, passed through small towns on our way home watching the firework displays around us, and eventually settled for our final picture of Mt. Rainier under sunset hues.
Home again, home again.