Lake is quite the budding weekend warrior. We are all really. This weekend we packed up the whole family and headed to Mount Rainier National Park for a camping and hiking adventure. Mummy was rather nervous. It was our first camping trip with Lake. It was our first camping trip together as a couple. It was our first time going to the mountains without reservations. All concerns aside, it was a smashing success.
We take our 3 door 1998 Honda Civic and pack it full of supplies for the weekend. Actually Michael does all the gear packing Thursday so that we will be ready to go early on Saturday morning. We have enough of everything for four adults and a baby. The “Germans” are coming with us, that’s Jo and her fellow au pair friend Doreen, and they kindly organized the food. We have an absurdly full car, a veritable warrior party on wheels, and lots of entertainment for Lake and each other.
Much to my relief, we nab one of the last campsites at Silver Springs (a really fantastic one by the river) and set up our tents before heading up to Paradise. Jo and Doreen are unaccustomed to setting up their tent in the daylight in a proper campsite as they are often following extremely rigorous itineraries and setting up camp any old where after midnight without regard to specific sites per sae and collapsing camp under the scolding camp host’s watchful eye. It’s a refreshing experience for them, I think. Michael sets up our family tent with the help of a very interested Lake.
With relief we unload the car of our overnight gear (Doreen especially was a bit cramped!) and then off we go! We are looking forward to what we hope will be perfect timing for the mid-summer wildflowers.
Indeed it is spectacular! We hike the Alta Vista trail, having fun, taking in the panoramas, admiring the wildflowers, playing on the snow, and glisading. Michael and I reminisce about climbing up to Camp Muir in the fall of 2015, Lake in his first trimester, and how we came back last fall with Lake as a baby. We love the Paradise of Mount Rainier.
On Sunday, we enjoy a relaxing morning in camp. Hey, we survived our first night out! We easily break Camp and head back into the park. We visit the Ohanapecosh River suspension bridge and have fun lazing about on the riverbar.
After saying goodbye to The Grove of the Patriarchs, we drive up to Sunrise, the highest point in the park accessible by car. It boasts amazing views and is much less populated than Paradise. It is only my second visit to this gorgeous location and everyone else’s first time. We are so glad this is how we cap off our weekend warrior tour of the Park. The wildflowers are on display high above the White River, as viewed from the Silver Forest Trail.
I was last here when I was 18 years old and summited Mount Rainier with the Mounaineers via the Emmons Glacier.
Sunrise was our final visit before heading back to the city and on the way home we got to talking about Bucket Lists. Run marathons, Climb Mount Rainier. Hot Air Ballooning. Travel abroad. After living life fully for nearly four decades, the bucket list needs some serious thought and updates. We will revisit and review the Bucket List in an upcoming blogging session soon. For now, we roll with spontaneity and are living strong in the moment, loving the mountains of the Pacific Northwest. What will benext for the weekend warriors?