Mount Rainier. We'll meet at the Longmire area of the park and if snow levels allow, work on the beautiful and popular Comet Falls Trail. Work will include annual maintenance and extensive repair on a damaged section of trail that has been a problem for hikers. We'll move to another nearby trail if snow has not yet melted from this trail.
Many claim this two-step falls is the most beautiful waterfall in the park. The 320-foot cascade fans out as it crashes down the basalt cliffs, providing a spectacular show of force and beauty. The trail to this natural wonder climbs the steep valley of Van Trump Creek, offering little along the way other than an experience in the forest primeval. But once you reach the waterfall basin, that overly average trail suddenly seems exceptional. The trail climbs steeply away from the road, piercing the dense old-growth forest of the Van Trump valley. In 0.5 mile, the trail crosses Van Trump Creek--beyond that point, the pitch eases a bit. The trail continues to climb, just not as steeply as during that initial 0.5 mile. Beyond the creek crossing, the trail traverses across the base of a few active avalanche chutes. Each year, snowslides scour these slopes, creating new and unique challenges for hikers each spring. You might find yourself hopping through downed trees or scrambling over jumbled rocks if you visit before the trail crews get in to repair the damage. You cross Falls Creek at around 2.3 miles, and just past this point you'll see the lower cascade of Comet Falls. At about 2.5 miles, leave the main trail and angle off onto a side track on the left to access the plunge pool at the base of the falls. Enjoy the view before returning the way you came. Copyright © Dan A. Nelson/The Mountaineers Books
GPS coordinates are only approximate, please always use the written driving directions when trying to find a trail head