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Rampart Ridge Snowshoe

Mount Rainier Area

Location

Mount Rainier Area -- SW - Longmire/Paradise
View map below

Length

4.5 miles, roundtrip

Elevation

Gain: 1200 ft.
Highest Point: 4050 ft.

Rating

3.33 out of 5

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Parking Pass/Entry Fee

National Park Pass
 
 

A moderately-challenging snowshoe route in Mount Rainier National Park with some avalanche danger in times of heavy snow. Check the avalanche reports before heading out, and know that while some snowshoe routes follow summer trails, they are not always clearly marked when under snow. You will need a map and navigation skills to do this route in winter.

The route departs from the Longmire area of Rainier. From the parking area near the Longmire building complex (including restrooms, a museum and a hotel), cross the road and link up with the the Trail of the Shadows. Turn left, and walk for about 0.1 miles to a junction with the Rampart Ridge Trail.

The Trail of the Shadows is a nice fallback, which you can hike if there is too much snow to do the Rampart Ridge snowshoe. But if you're heading up to Rampart Ridge, turn left here and start switchbacking uphill. It's 1.6 miles to the top of the ridge (which can be really tiring in snowshoes), and then another 1 mile to a junction with the Wonderland Trail.

You'll turn right at this junction and head downhill on much steeper terrain than you came up (you might want trekking poles as well as snowshoes). It's 1.7 miles back down to the road and another 0.1 to the parking area.

 

Rampart Ridge Snowshoe

Map & Directions

Trailhead
Co-ordinates: 46.7498, -121.8137 Open map in new window

Getting There

rom I-5, take exit 143 for S 320th St toward Federal Way. Stay in the left 2 lanes to turn left onto S 320th and proceed for 0.8 miles. Turn right onto Military Road S and drive for 4.4 miles, then turn left onto WA-161 S and proceed for 3.9 miles.

Get into the two left-hand lanes, and turn left onto WA-167 N toward WA 410, then take the exit for 512 W toward 161 S. Proceed on 512 W for 2.5 miles, then exit for South Hill. Follow the signs for 161S/Eatonville/Mount Rainier.

Stay on 161 S for 22.6 miles, then turn left onto Center St. E, into Eatonville. Continue onto Alder Cutoff Road E for 6.5 miles, then at a 'T' intersection, turn left onto WA-7 S. Drive through the tiny town of Elbe and continue along Hwy 706, which becomes the Paradise Road when you enter the park. Longmire is about 25 miles from the 'T' intersection before Elbe.

Park in the large parking area at Longmire, and head back across the paved highway to find the Trail of the Shadows and your trailhead.

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

National Park Pass
 

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Rampart Ridge Snowshoe

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