Today we headed to Mount Ranier for a hike. We found a couple hikes in the wilderness lands next to the park that allow you to bring your dog. The lands are managed by USDA. Once we found the Forest Service road, we had to follow it for 8 miles. It was the worst road we have ever driven on. We almost turned around after the first mile. I’m glad we didn’t, but the ride was horrible. Dart hated it. There were so many potholes, bumps, rocks, and washouts on the road that it probably took us 45 minutes or so to get the trailhead. There was some spectacular views of Ranier, so it was worth it. It took awhile to find the trailhead, but we finally did.
The hike was beautiful. Dart loved it so much I think he forgave us for the ride up. We got a couple good views of Ranier and the wildflowers were lovely. I decided not to lug my camera on the trail, so I don’t have good wildflower pictures from the hike itself. I grabbed a shot of some Foxgloves as we descended the forest road.
Once again, Dart exuberantly ran back and forth the entire hike. He had as much energy when he finished the hike as when he started. I could barely make it back to the car. We also left him off the leash when we met other hikers with dogs. He did much better interfacing with them when he’s not on the leash than when he is.
We went briefly into the National Park, but it was late in the day so we didn’t stay long and headed home. You probably get your best views of Ranier outside the park anyway. But, the road going in to the park went through a beautiful forest. It was really awesome.
Today we saw some of the tallest trees we’ve ever seen. It’s typical for here, but new for us. I would love to take a Loblolly Pine and stand it next to one of these trees to see the difference.