Let’s hike the Van Trump Park Trail to Comet Falls and Mildred Point. We’ll also hike the side trail into Van Trump Park and see how far we can go. Afterwards, we may stop somewhere for ice cream or dinner. I will need at least 3 people willing to drive.• Excerpt from “Day Hiking Mount Rainier,” by Dan A. Nelson
Van Trump Park, named for the first man to reach the summit of Mount Rainier, stretches across the ridges above Comet Falls. Vast wildflower fields comprise the parklands, and these fields are popular with foraging deer and mountain goats. Van Trump Park requires a good deal of effort to reach, but once it's attained, the rewards are boundless. Grand views accompanied by a plethora of local flora and fauna create a truly special wilderness experience.
• Trailhead ETA: 9:30 am. • Round Trip: 8.0 miles.
• Starting Elevation: 3,620 feet. • Ascent Elevation: 2,590 feet.
• High Point: 5,930 feet. • Difficulty: Moderate/difficult.
• Pace: Slow/moderate. • Hiking Time: 6 hours.
• Special Features: Mountain views, ridges/passes, rivers, waterfalls, wildflowers/meadows.
• Maps: Green Trails Mount Rainier West, No. 269.
• GPS: N[masked], W121 46.938.
What to Bring: Day pack with the 10 Essentials, appropriate hiking attire (no blue jeans, cotton clothing, or sneakers), plenty of water, lunch/energy snacks, sturdy/comfortable shoes + a bag for wet/soiled pairs, trekking poles, sun preventatives, bug repellent, and your camera! Dress according to the forecast (layers!).
Contact: Longmire Wilderness Information Center, (360) 569-6650.
Permits/Regulations: $15 per vehicle for a 7-day entrance permit or $30 per vehicle for an annual pass. Group size limited to twelve. Fires prohibited. Dogs prohibited.
Getting there: From Tacoma, drive east on State Route 7 to Elbe, then veer left onto SR 706 to enter the park at the Nisqually Entrance near Ashford. Continue east 10 miles to the parking area on the left (north) side of the road, found just before the road passes over Christine Falls Bridge.
Useful Links: 7-Day Weather Forecast
• Longmire/Cougar Rock Area Trails
• Hiking Guide Description and Trip Reports
Robert's Cell: (253) 677-6992.
Disclaimer: Trailside is not a professional guide service. Our leaders function, as facilitators only, to enhance your outdoor experience. Reports of trail and weather conditions are based on best available information, are subject to change, and are no guarantee of fitness for any particular purpose or appropriate for a certain fitness level. You may join us on this hike at your own risk. Keep in mind that hiking involves risks and weather changes quickly in the mountains. You are responsible for your own safety and the more prepared you are, the better the chance you will remain safe. Signing up for any Trailside organized event indicates that you have read, understand, and agree to the terms of this disclaimer and hold harmless all Trailside Organizers and Leaders in the event of injury or loss.