Backpacking in Mt. Rainier National Park
Camp in Mt. Rainier National Park. Drive in Friday night and spend the night at Cougar Rock Campground – enter from the Southwest entrance, by Ashford. Talk to a park ranger first thing the next morning and book a group camp spot on Lake George for that night.
Hike the easy couple miles in and drop your gear. There’s a bear pole to stow your stuff. Even in the peak of summer you’re likely to have the whole lake to yourself.
Swim in Lake George to cool off. Commandeer a log raft and see how far you can get around the lake.
Then hike the easy 1 mile up to Gobbler's Knob for sunset.
Bring a camp stove for warm food, sleeping bags to share, and a hammock to throw up between trees. Enjoy a 360º view of the park and Mt. Rainier, but come prepared for the biting wind. Hike back down the the lake-side camp spot after dark – don't forget your headlamp.
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