Nisqually Vista

Mount Rainier National Park

An easy paved hike to a stunning overlook of a glacier-carved valley.

Hiking Easy

Distance
1.7 km
Ascent
55 m
Descent
55 m
Duration
0-1 hrs
Low Point
1.6 km
High Point
1.6 km
Gradient
Nisqually Vista Map

This short hike to Nisqually Vista is one of the most popular sightseeing hikes in the Paradise area of Mount Rainier National Park. This easy 1.1-mile loop trail follows a paved path to a stunning overview of the rocky Nisqually River Valley and the Nisqually Glacier.

Description

The trailhead for this loop hike is directly adjacent to the lower parking lot for the Mount Rainier Paradise Visitor Center. While this is essentially the overflow parking lot, even this lot will fill up on many days of the week. Arrive early to ensure a parking spot.

The farthest point of the loop offers "the best and final viewpoint, with an interpretive sign describing the Nisqually Glacier," according to Ken Giesbers on WTA.org. "The glacier has receded greatly over the years, leaving what looks like an elongated gravel-covered mound, far smaller than it used to be. The bottom, or snout, of the glacier has a nearly vertical face, where meltwater from above washes over and erodes it," he continues.

Walking on this trail is very easy, thanks to the paved surface. The NPS notes that this is one of the only paved trails in the park and is "suitable for families with strollers." However, note that this trail is not wheelchair-accessible due to a small stone staircase at the beginning near the trailhead.

Sources: https://www.wta.org/go-hiking/hikes/nisqually-vista-loop https://www.nps.gov/places/nisqually-vista-trailhead.htm https://www.nps.gov/mora/planyourvisit/day-hiking-at-mount-rainier.htm

Difficulty

Easy

Walking along a well-kept trail that’s mostly flat. No obstacles are present.

Low Exposure

1 out of 4

The path is on completely flat land and potential injury is limited to falling over.

Remoteness

1 out of 4

Close to help in case of emergency.

Best time to visit

May, June, July, August, September, October

Features

  • Alpine
  • Picturesque
  • Family friendly

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area