Nisqually Vista Trail At Paradise

Mt Rainier National Park

Ashford, Washington

Trailhead at lower Paradise parking area

Located just off the lower parking area at Paradise, the Nisqually Vista Trail is a 1.4-mile-long loop trail that leads to a handful of viewpoints featuring views of Mt. Rainier and the Nisqually Glacier valley. During the Ice Age, Nisqually Glacier filled this valley, and even over the decade that I've been coming here the much smaller glacier continues to retreat. This provides visitors with some sense of how a glacier valley slowly comes back to life as the ice retreats. The trail has some ups and downs, but it is mostly a fairly easy trail to hike.

When it comes to choosing whether to head left or right at the loop, I recommend heading to the right. This way the views will get progressively better with each viewpoint you stop at.

mt rainier paradise nisqually vista trail

Mt. Rainier Comes into View (P14A0665)

mt rainier paradise nisqually vista trail

Nisqually Vista (P14A0677)
The Nisqually River emerges from underneath the Nisqually Glacier as it begins its journey to Puget Sound. During the Ice Age this valley was filled with the glacier.

More About Mt. Rainier National Park

Spectacular scenery. Great hiking. Challenging mountain climbing. Mt. Rainier has a lot to offer to those looking to get away from it all and to those looking for a great day trip out of Seattle. Mt. Rainier features a number of glaciers, more than any other mountain in the U.S. outside of Alaska.

When experiencing Mt. Rainier National Park, it can be easy to forget that Mt. Rainier is regarded as one of the most dangerous volcanoes in the world. It has much in common with Mt. St. Helens. But Mt. Rainier is bigger, it's covered with much more ice and snow, and it is closer to major population centers. Lahars from past eruptions have flowed as far as present-day downtown Seattle and Tacoma. So enjoy it while you can.

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