Personal-Everyday ChaosTravel

Mount Rainier | Pacific Northwest | Travel

By August 14, 2019 No Comments

We drove a total of 600 miles in 3 days stopping in between to shoot a wedding, an engagement session AND tour Mt. Rainier! It was a busy couple of days! haha!

You may have seen the blog posts where I flew to the west coast to shoot a wedding at Bellingham Cruise Terminal and an engagement session at the Woodland Park Zoo Rose Garden….well, we managed to squeeze in one day to get close to that big rock with snow on it! The last time I visited the Seattle area with my friend Genna, Mr. Rainier was one of the places we wanted to explore but we ran out of time! This time around, I got to travel with my husband Greg and we made it a point to get up early and make the best out of the one full day we had left before boarding our plane back to Pittsburgh but not before stopping in at Pikes Place-a must see while you’re in downtown Seattle!

There were so many times during our drive I wished that the sun was in a different location, or that it was softer light…but I’m so thankful and grateful to have been there at all! If I had more days to spend in the park, I’d wake up extra early to catch the sun rise and stay way too late to catch the sunset. I can only imagine how beautiful it would be to photograph! I also learned something about myself….I am a horrible land scape photographer and I would much rather have people in the photos. There’s something about adding the human element that I find more appealing when it comes to photographing nature. I don’t think National Geographic is going to be calling me anytime soon! haha!



 I was excited that we finally got to see them throw the fish at Pikes Place. Every other time we had been there, we missed it. They only throw the fish when someone buys one so we were never quite as lucky as we were this time around!

The day we were there, a huge cruise ship carrying thousands of people had just come in. Needless to say the market was pretty busy-not as busy as I have seen it before, but it made it hard to navigate down thru the  inside market. I love traveling…but I hate crowds.

A few of the goodies! Everything was so fresh! We grabbed a few fresh peaches for a snack!

…and because we were already there, I had to take Greg to the ever fascinating (and gross) gum wall right around the corner.

Off we went! The first stop was Mowich lake which took us over a historic wooden bridge over the Carbon River and down several dirt roads…but the lake was STUNNING to see in person. Water so clear you could see every detail at the bottom. I so wished we had time and a kayak…it would have been amazing!

Beautiful wildflowers covered in road dust….gorgeous none the less!

The morning light! If you look close enough, you can see the dust made from other cars traveling over the dirt road!

Check out how clear that water was! This would have been more gorgeous in the evening when the light was a little softer.  You can see every fallen tree and fish that swam near…it was gorgeous to see in person.

Life is a highway. I could have photographed this mountain from every angle. We were so lucky to have blue skies. The locals told us the skies had been cloudy for weeks so we were so thankful that we had a great day!

This little town of Wilkeson was a time capsule for 1887 when it was founded! I thought the old houses and stores were so cute! They had the original wood floors!

Although these were technically not located inside the national park, we made a detour to check out the Crystal Mountain Resort Gondolas!

We took in  a scenic ride on the Mt. Rainier Gondola over meadows of wildflowers, and climbed over 2,000 vertical feet to the summit of Crystal Mountain. At the top, the view of Mt. Rainier and the Cascade Range, as well as the Summit House was breathtaking.

Check out those views!!

Greg on top of the world!

A few views from Paradise and Reflection Lake!

Nestled on the south slopes of the glacier-shrouded volcano at an elevation of 5,400-feet among wildflower meadows punctuated with glistening snowfields and groves of gnarled firs and hemlocks; there are few locations within the entire national park system this stunning.

We didn’t have a calm enough day for the water to be still…but this is called Reflection Lake because of the gorgeous reflection of Mt. Rainier on the water.

Paradise Lodge was recently reopened after nearly two years of work and $24.5 million worth of renovations.
Built at Paradise on the southern slopes of Mount Rainier in Washington, the historic inn has now completed an extensive renovation project that stretches back more than a decade.

Christine Falls Bridge! This was one of our last stops before exiting the park and heading back to our AirBnB and I like to think we went out with a bang-or a big splash! The falls drop 69 feet in drops of 32 and 37 feet.

We stopped at a unique dining spot called Mt. Rainier Railroad Dining Co. I got the most amazing hamburger…what can I say, I’m a simple gal!

Don’t get your panties in a wad–they weren’t working tracks!


Greg and I head back to the Pacific North West to photograph another wedding in April. We’re already planning to stay a few extra days to check out a few more spots. What we really need is a few weeks….hey, who knows, taking an RV trip is on our list of things to do in the next 5 years!!