MOUNT RAINIER GONDOLA
What: The Mount Rainier Gondola was an $8 million project that opened in 2011 and effectively changed Crystal Mountain from a ski area into a year-round resort. The gondola can whisk 600 people per hour up 2,456 vertical feet to the top of Green Valley, where visitors can hike, take pictures of Mount Rainier, dine, go horseback riding, play disc golf and participate in other activities. At 6,856 feet above sea level, the Summit House restaurant is the highest restaurant in Washington. The gondola ride takes 9 minutes, 39 seconds. Some summers, skiing is available into July, but a poor snow year shortened this season.
Where: Crystal Mountain Resort
Getting there: Follow state Route 410 through Enumclaw and Greenwater to Crystal Mountain Boulevard. Turn left and follow the road to the resort.
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Schedule: The gondola runs 10 a.m.-5 p.m. this weekend and next. It’s open daily June 27-Sept. 20. Hours will be 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Sundays-Thursdays and 10 a.m.-7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays.
Cost: On weekdays, round-trip tickets are $22 ages 13-64, $12 ages 4-12 and $17 ages 65 and older. On weekends, roundtrip tickets are $25 ages 13-64, $15 ages 4-12 and $20 ages 65 and older. One-day unlimited use tickets are $40 ages 13-64, $25 ages 4-12 and $30 ages 65 and older.
Craig Hill, firstname.lastname@example.org