Hike description: Hiking Burroughs Mountain offers three mountaintop views, each a bit closer to Mount Rainier.
From atop the peak farthest from Sunrise, often referred to as Third Burroughs, not only is the mountain in your face but it’s not uncommon to hear avalanches and rock fall. You’re also likely to hear gawking hikers proclaim they feel as if this is the closest they’ve ever been to Rainier.
It’s not just the view that tends to take hikers’ breaths away. Third Burroughs is 7,728 feet above sea level. Many hikers only go as far as First Burroughs (7,180 feet) or Second Burroughs (7,402 feet). The Sunrise parking lot is at 6,400 feet, the highest point you can drive to in the park.
The route is well-marked, and on weekends there are usually plenty of hikers on the path. There are several options for reaching the Burroughs, so study a map before you go.
There was still snow on the route in early July, according to park rangers. Don’t skimp on the sunscreen. There is no shade on this trail. There are plenty of other hiking opportunities in the Sunrise area for those looking to extend their trip.
Directions: Enter Mount Rainier National Park via state Route 410 and take the Sunrise Road exit. Pay the entry fee and check route conditions at the Wilderness Information Center and continue to the parking area at Sunrise.
Difficulty rating: 4 (5 is most difficult, 1 is easiest).
Miles round trip: 9.2.
Elevation gain: 2,500 feet.
Best time of the year: July-September.
Map: Green Trails 270: Mount Rainier East.
Pass: Entry to Mount Rainier National Park is $25 per vehicle and good for one week. Annual passes also are available.
Also: The mountains are named for naturalist John Burroughs. The Burroughs mountains are part of The Mountaineers’ 100 Peaks of Mount Rainier National Park program. Hikers can register at peakbagger.com to earn medallions for reaching the top of various peaks in the park. There is no charge to participate in this program, but a guide to the peaks is available for $7.95-$14.95. The facilities at Sunrise are open and interpretive opportunities may be available during summer trips. Arriving early is recommended, especially on weekends, to assure you can find parking at Sunrise. Stay alert for cyclists on the road to Sunrise. Dogs are not permitted in Mount Rainier National Park. Traditional geocaches are not permitted in national parks, but a virtual cache and earth cache are located in the area of this hike. These caches require finders to answer questions or take pictures to prove they’ve been to the coordinates. For more information visit geocaching.com.