5. Ohanapecosh and Stevens Canyon (southeast): This area boasts lighter crowds, waterfalls, field canyons and towering old-growth bushes. Its entrance additionally closes because the climate intensifies, but it surely’s sometimes open from late Might to early November.
The place to Keep and Eat
Paradise. From Might to early October, examine into the Paradise Inn, which sits within the park, excessive on the mountain’s southwestern flank, about 19 miles from the Nisqually entrance. Its 121 rustic rooms are tucked underneath a steep, shingled roof designed to shed snow (which might linger till June or July). Within the evenings, rangers typically give talks within the grand foyer, an inviting house with twin fireplaces, cedar-slab tables and a country carved piano.
Longmire. The historic Longmire District is residence to the park’s different lodging possibility, the comfortable 1926 Nationwide Park Inn (technically in Ashford, about 6 miles from the Nisqually entrance). Its 25 tiny and primary rooms don’t have Wi-Fi or TVs, however the property stays open year-round. Insider tip: Don’t miss the spectacular views from its veranda rocking chairs and afternoon tea beside the lounge’s outsized stone hearth.
Each properties have ADA-accessible rooms.
Ashford. You may get extra bang to your buck simply exterior the park. The mountain city of Ashford sits 6 miles west of the Nisqually entrance, the one one open year-round to automobiles. This space has the biggest and most subtle collection of lodging and eating places near Rainier. You possibly can e-book a tree home or cabin in Ashford on the Wellspring Spa & Woodland Retreat, a bohemian sanctuary in a fern-cloaked forest (suppose “Hobbiton meets Rivendell,” with a labyrinth, driftwood arches and out of doors cedar scorching tubs). Close by, the 1912 Alexander’s Lodge at Mt. Rainier has 23 quaint rooms (the higher flooring are accessible by stairs solely). For further attraction, keep in one of many turret rooms, overlooking the waterwheel.
Additionally in Ashford, the Paradise Village Ukrainian restaurant serves such dishes as white-cabbage borsch, galushki (gnocchi) and sour-cherry pierogies, alongside crepes and baked items. This spot’s additionally residence to the Instagram-famous “Cannibal Scorching Tub” — a large kettle over a wooden fireplace — which is open by reservation, even to guests staying elsewhere. Load up on rib-sticking, climber-carb-loading fare close by on the Copper Creek Inn, the mountain’s top-ranked eatery. Discover out for your self why its blackberry pie wins raves. Or wait until simply earlier than the park boundary and take pleasure in pork momos (dumplings) on the Wildberry Restaurant.
Mineral. Fifteen miles west of Ashford, in Mineral, Elkamp places a contemporary fashionable twist on tent and RV websites. It affords facilities extra typical of a boutique property, corresponding to escorting all new visitors to their websites, and delivering ice and firewood. It should develop in 2022 to incorporate cabins, yurts, a tree home and a luxuriously appointed Airstream. Savvy guests gravitate to the outdated barn, the place the effusive house owners promote artwork, classic tenting objects, connoisseur treats corresponding to cinnamon-bourbon-pecan popcorn, and native Hellbent and Half Lion craft beers.
Eatonville. To Rainier’s west, sip a draft at Eatonville’s Mill Haus Cider Firm, a brand new venue with an outside music stage and coated patios with firepits. You too can soak up a flick on the 1942 Roxy Theater.
Wilkeson. In case you’re driving to the park from Tacoma, cease by the previous coal city of Wilkeson, en path to the park’s car-free Carbon River entrance 14 miles to the southeast. It affords good-looking Nineteenth-century structure, and a number of the state’s finest wood-fired pizza on the Carlson Block. Savvy vacationers line up an hour earlier than opening (as soon as the restaurant makes use of up its 120 balls of dough, it’s completed for the day).
Notice: Many Mount Rainier-area eating places shut for the winter and keep open solely till 8 p.m. within the peak summer season season.