My friend Crystal has been itching to go hiking and I've wanted to maximize the number of hikes I go on this summer, so we set out last weekend to Tolmie Peak in Mount Rainier National Park for lookouts, lakes, and mountains.
It's a bit of a drive for us and prompted us to leave bright and early. At least the drive up was scenic with the fog crawling through the Washington pine trees.
After crossing this one-way bridge, we embarked on seventeen miles of the worst gravel road you'll ever see. Granted, we had a car lower to the ground, but with every bump we felt the whole car creak along. Eventually, we made it to the trailhead after adding an extra hour of travel time.
We we're immediately greeted by the bluest lake you'll ever see. The best omen we could have after the disastrous drive up.
The trail weaved it's way through woods and tallest trees.
And beautiful sweeping views of the Cascades.
Up until this point, it was overall an easy hike. A few climbs here and there, but not the hardest hike we've ever done.
That was until we realized there was still a mile left until we reached the lookout, our final destination.
Eunice Lake was gorgeous with the clear, aquamarine water. And then we looked up to find the lookout. Just perched there overlooking Eunice Lake.
A mile to that little guy on the ridge. Look at the elevation gain! We were completely deceived.
Well, up we went. The only consolation to remedy our bitterness was the view of Eunice Lake on the steep incline.
Then of course, stairs! (It really wasn't too bad, we're just complainers).
Yet, at every turn, we thought the look would emerge. Instead, there were just mountains and fog. Meh (just kidding, it was amazing).
Then FINALLY we arrived.
And WOW what a view.
The mountains went on for miles and miles and clouds just rolled by.
Lookouts are so cool. I definitely need to stay in one on the next hike!
While we ate our lunch, some other hikers we're feeding the birds and we decided to give it a try. Naturally I channeled my inner Gretel and made a bread crumb trail, and this little guy thoroughly enjoyed it.
After some time, the temperature dropped and the clouds started to come in and became darker. A good signal to start heading back down.
And the downhill was much more pleasant for the record!
A little promo for The North Face, Hammockers of UW, and Keep Exploring. This is my debut for my upcoming modeling career (if only).
As weird as it sounds, these trees are the best ones I've ever seen on a hike thus far.
One last shot of the blue lake and we we're off!
Somehow on the way back to Seattle, we shaved off an hour, even with the gravel road, traffic, and construction...honestly, only something Crystal and I could do. Regardless, it was such a fun day hiking, although it's a hike I'll need to do again to see Mount Rainier!