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Skyline Trail

Intermediate/Difficult
 4.8 (97) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

A popular and easily accessible route, skirting the slopes of Mount Rainier and Paradise Glacier.


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Map Key

5.3

Miles

8.6

KM

Loop

6,765' 2,062 m

High

5,451' 1,661 m

Low

1,493' 455 m

Up

1,485' 453 m

Down

11%

Avg Grade (6°)

38%

Max Grade (21°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features Birding · River/Creek · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

The park has closed Skyline Trail at the intersection that meets Upper Skyline due to slippery conditions. One has to take Upper Skyline to complete the loop. The park will re-evaluate the closure in the spring.

Check current trail conditions before starting this route. Early season trail use may be hazardous.

Overview

This route starts and ends at the Paradise Jackson Visitor Center, and is one of the more popular routes in the Paradise area.

As one might expect, the closer Skyline brings you to Mount Rainier, the better the views become. Especially if you're interested in getting up close and personal with Paradise Glacier.

Need to Know

Several sections of the park are designated as day use only. These areas have been closed to overnight camping due to previous resource damage caused by concentrations of people in areas too fragile to sustain such use. Paradise is a day use only area. Please stay only on the constructed trails and help minimize impact on this delicate environment. Current trail conditions are available park-wide from wilderness information centers, ranger stations, and visitor centers.

Rest on benches or rocks. Please do not sit or hike on delicate subalpine plants.

Treat water before drinking. Fires are prohibited. No pets on trails.

Description

The trailhead is located near the entrance to the Jackson Visitor Center at Paradise, marked by stone steps inscribed with a quote by John Muir.

Hiking the loop clockwise, the trail climbs 2 miles until reaching Panorama Point, where a toilet is provided for trail users. Past Panorama Point the trail begins its one mile descent to the junction with the Golden Gate Trail. Another 0.75 mile and the Skyline Trail reaches the Stevens-Van Trump Memorial and its junction with the Paradise Glacier Trail. From there it descends into the Paradise Valley, then climbs slightly to Myrtle Falls and finally back to Paradise.

For a shorter version of this loop, take the Golden Gate Trail back to Paradise.

Flora & Fauna

The trail offers stunning displays of subalpine wildflowers, a close-up look at Mount Rainier and the Nisqually Glacier, and, on a clear day, views of peaks as far south as Oregon's Mount Hood.

Contacts

Shared By:

Tom Robson with improvements by Cody Hendrix

Trail Ratings

  4.8 from 97 votes

#1

in Paradise

#29

Overall
  4.8 from 97 votes
5 Star
84%
4 Star
16%
3 Star
0%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Recommended Route Rankings

#1

in Paradise

#2

in Washington

#29

Overall
148 Views Last Month
12,490 Since Mar 5, 2015
Intermediate/Difficult

0%
0%
61%
7%
32%
0%

Photos

Mt. Rainier towards the beginning of the Skyline Trail.
Feb 6, 2016 near Eatonville, WA
Mt. Rainier
May 13, 2015 near Eatonville, WA
The mountain looming in the background after a switchback on Skyline Trail.
Dec 16, 2015 near Eatonville, WA
Winter camping just outside Paradise on the Skyline Trail.
Dec 16, 2015 near Eatonville, WA
A beautiful cascade coming off of Skyline.
Jul 23, 2015 near Eatonville, WA
Photos just don't do this massive mountain justice!
Jun 27, 2016 near Eatonville, WA

Weather


Current Trail Conditions

Update Conditions
All Clear 13 days ago See History
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Check-Ins

Oct 4, 2020
Jeroen Hauwelaert
10h 00m
Oct 3, 2020
Brian Foley
5.3mi — 4h 00m
Sep 12, 2020
Sungyeal Kim
5.3mi
Sep 10, 2020
Kayla P
Sep 7, 2020
Vasuki M
Sep 3, 2020
Cindy Lopez
4mi
Aug 31, 2020
K H
Aug 28, 2020
Alexandria Escobar