Friday, May 24, 2024

Mostly Mt Rainier

Back to Mt. Rainier 2024 ...

At the entrance gate the Ranger provided
a map of the Park and a sheet of info
for Spring 2024.  I was careful to bring
along my Field Notes memo book, Mount
Rainier Edition

Traveling with friend Tim, we are almost to our
destination, Paradise, near the summit.
Mount Rainier is the highest peak
in Washington State and the Cascade Range.

The date of this visit is May 8, 2024

Looking up at the summit from Paradise.
Can you see the human?  (Blue arrow)
The human gives a bit of scale to the image and,
yet, doesn't do any justice to the size of this mountain top.

The sky was mostly clear, but there were some
wispy clouds.  It was a bit windy.  We were not expecting
so much snow on the ground at the Visitor Center.
The wind made a lite coat feel good.

Visitor Center at Paradise
It was not too crowded. However, the lines seemed long in 
the shop selling souvenirs.

The drive from Seattle takes a little over 2 hours.

Display in the Visitor Center
The raised-relief map was fascinating to me.

Information Counter
Note the yellow arrow ... this is where you can
stamp your journal with the official Park Stamp
(Smile worthy: Upon entering the Visitor Center
there is a large sign with 2 arrows. One points
to Information the other to Rest Rooms.)

I have my Field Notes Mt. Rainier Memo book along
to get the official stamp inside.  See next image.

The brand Field Notes produces, mostly, memo books. There are certainly hundreds, possibly thousands of variations of Field Notes memo books. There is a series of 18 books customized for National Parks, and this Mt Rainier memo book is one of the series.

Mount Rainier was named by British Navy Captain George Vancouver on May 8, 1792, in honor of his friend Rear Admiral Peter Rainier.  Coincidentally, that was exactly 232 years before my visit on May 8, 2024.  😊

A few visitors trying to decide if they want to venture
up the icy walks. I did not as I didn't have cleats on my shoes.

To those of you who've been keeping an eye on John's Island:  You may be asking, didn't you visit Mt Rainier and post about it last year?  Well, no, time is flying by ... It has been almost 2 years since I posted about Mt. Rainier.

Mountains near Rainier
in the Tatoosh Range

These mountains remind me of the Swiss Alps
This is Pinnacle Peak in the Tatoosh Range

Glacier flow remnants - Nisqually River
view from Glacier Bridge on 
Paradise Valley Road

For perspective, a view found on the web,
showing an overview of Seattle with
Mt Rainier to the south (about 50 miles).

A view of the mountain taken on one of my
recent waterfront walks. This view is looking 
across Elliott Bay toward the mountain to 
the south.

Images of Mt Rainier have been used for a long time in
advertising. From my collection of memorabilia, here is
a calendar top published by a railroad serving the 
Pacific Northwest in 1929.

Another example from my collection,
this is the front of a menu used in the dining
car of a railroad, probably printed in the 1930s.
Notice the similarity of the art work between
the two pieces.

Flowers spotted on recent waterfront walks ...

All of these rose pictures were snapped in the
Rose Garden along the waterfront walk,
in mid-May, 2024.
Note the Space Needle in the distance
(on a misty morning).

Near the end of my walk I spotted this beautiful Iris
all by itself.

A couple of critters ...

This gull did not seem disturbed by my nearby
presence. When looking at the image later, I was impressed 
how clear the water was. It seems unusually clear
for Puget Sound.

First time to spot a bunny this year.
I think she/he is accustomed to walkers ... didn't seem
to be concerned about a human nearby.
What to make of those gray patches?
Possibly got caught up in something?

Love critters?  Be sure to check out Saturday's Critters!

Ships spotted in Puget Sound ...

I enjoy watching big ships come and go here in Seattle. Yes, I know, there can be problems when they run into bridges. Since the incident near Baltimore, I have noticed more tugs assisting large vessels.

2 for 1
In the center ... A Washington State Ferry
probably on a run from Seattle to Bremerton
Lower in the image ... Kitsap Fast Ferry
A passenger only vessel probably on a run
from Seattle to Kingston

Closer look at a typical Washington State Ferry
Cars, trucks, and passengers.

Unusual spotting ... REN JIAN 20 freighter.
Unusual colors for a freighter.

Holland America Eurodam

Ovation of the Seas
Arriving just before dawn.

Norwegian Sun

An MSC freighter leaving port and smoking up like a
wildfire. Maybe it's time for an engine tuneup?

My Cottonwood Tree Update

Top Left:  Snow of cotton
Top Right:  Handful of seeds
Bottom:  Trees sprouted - 1 of the 4 is the tree
in the next image!

The story: Last year, in May, I happened to take some walks in an area surrounded by Cottonwood Trees. They are big, beautiful trees, but, to most humans, they have a downside related to how they spread their seeds. The tree develops pods full of seeds and, in late Spring, the pods burst open and the seeds float away on what looks like tiny pieces of cotton, thus the name of the tree. Sometimes, the seeds floating around look like snowflakes.  As humans walk around the trees, they usually find the "snow" annoying and try to brush it aside. I became fascinated with the snow and wondered how many, out of the seemingly thousands of floating seeds, would actually germinate and create new trees. I grabbed a handful of the seeds, brought them home, and planted them. In a few days sprouts were up as you see in the photo above.  I used what I call "John's process of selection" to slowly select the most likely (and fittest) to survive and took care to keep it properly fed and watered for, what has now been, a little over a year. The result amazes me and is shown in the photo below. And, yes, the tree did lose all of its leaves over the winter and, at times, looked dead. All the leaves you see now, in the photo below, are new this Spring. Now, I will venture to guess that John is the only resident of the entire Seattle metropolitan area to attempt to grow a Cottonwood tree. Of course, humans grow all kinds of plants all the time, so the thing that makes me smile about this is that nature has rewarded me with a pretty plant that most folks find annoying. 😊 

Full moon setting ...

The Full Moon, aka Pink Moon, about to set on 
Tuesday, April 23, 2024.

Closing thought ... 

 Thank you for stopping by.


  1. I've planted trees and luckily have been able to sit in their shade. Your Cottonwood tree is looking great. Do you have any ideas as to where you will eventually plant it? It must have been beautiful visiting Mt. Rainier with all the snow. How fortunate to live where such beauty is close by. I remember rose gardens from my childhood when we would go to the big city. We would walk through the entire garden every year in Reno, Nevada. It was mom's favorite place. The setting pink moon is gorgeous.

  2. Hello John,
    Mt. Rainier is a beautiful national park, I have been to the Paradise visitor center and the snow was piled high all around the parking lot and the building. I like seeing your national park memorabilia. I collect hat pins from every place I visit, I am sure I have one from Mt. Rainier. Your photos are lovely, beautiful views of the Sound, the ships and Mt Rainier. I love the moon capture, the gull and the cute bunny. Will you be planting your Cottonwood tree, they grow very tall?
    Great quote! Thank you for linking up and sharing your critter post. Take care, have a great day and happy weekend. PS, thanks so much for leaving me a comment.

  3. ...John, Paradise looks like a fabulous destination. Thanks for taking me along to the see the sights, let's do it again.

  4. A throughly engaging post, John, with great variety and much to hold the interest of your readers. Years ago they had those passports to national parks here in Canada (perhaps they still do) and when my daughter was little we collected quite a few stamps. Next time I visit her in Ottawa I’ll check whether she still has it. I remember at the time she was always excited with a new entry. The weekend has just begun. Enjoy!

  5. What a panorama! I'm always impressed that there's a huge mountain so near a big city. Like two landscapes at the same time.

  6. What a wonderful post, filled with delights at every turn. I loved seeing the mountains, and the flowers, and even the cottonwood tree you planted. Thank you for this inspired post, friend.

  7. Mt. Ranier viewed from Vancouver B.C. is impressive even though you are very far away. When I go to Vancouver , I always look for Mt. Ranier. You make this into a good series of posts.

  8. The ships are always a treat to see. And it's been years since I've seen snow or ice so the mountain intrigues me. I wouldn't feel good walking on an icy surface either. What a fabulous place to visit! You always share such a nice variety!

  9. I am envious that you are only just a little over a two hour drive away from getting to be so close to Mount Rainier! She's a beauty! I googled to see what those "Field Notes" were all about, I had never heard of them before! I need to dig a bit deeper, I might like to have a version or two. Some day I would like to be on one of those cruise ships, lucky you to see them so close to home. I like your cottonwood tree, even though I feel like I need to sneeze when I look at it!

  10. A lovely post with so much information an beautiful photos.

  11. So many interesting things in this post.

    Our friends gave us maple and oak seedlings about ten years ago. Our friends are gone now but the trees are growing tall. They are named after our friends and we love watching them from year to year.

  12. Me enamore del monte y el conejito. Me gusta tu álamo. Linda luna. Te mando un beso.

  13. Some beautiful photos in this post. And a great variety of subjects, it's never boring :)

  14. When I saw you went to Mt. Rainier, I was wondering if you got your passport stamped. Of course you did! Wonderful photos. The cottonwood tree looks very vibrant. Great to see a wonderful post from you. I always enjoy reading them.


  15. Even though we have visited so many National Parks, we have never been to Mt Rainier. We certainly have to do this! I would like to explore the North Cascades, so maybe Mt Rainier would be a good starting point and then move on from there.
    I'm one of those people who actually love Cottonwoods - the Fremont or Westen Cottonwood. Is that the same Cottonwood you're talking about? I checked and saw that there are Black Cottonwoods in Washington State - is that the one you planted?
    Are these cruise ships coming in all on the same day? Goodness. A cruise would be the least tempting way to travel for me. I like ferries though.
    I love this very interesting post, John! Have a good rest of the week. Hugs - Carola

  16. John, what a wonderful post this is, with so much variety.
    I especially liked the pictures and history of Mount Rainier, they reminded me of a trip to New Zealand I was fortunate to go on back in the 70's ... I actually got to walk on a glacier, which I recall was not easy!

    Beautiful flowers and that bunny is sweet.

    Enjoy these last few days of May, and my good wishes for the new month of June.

    All the best Jan

  17. John, your exploration of Mt. Rainier and the surrounding areas is captivating!
    From the majesty of the mountain to the charm of critters and the story of your Cottonwood tree, your post is filled with wonder.
    Thanks for sharing your adventures and inspiring us to appreciate nature's beauty!

    Happy Friday!

  18. I love the Mt. Rainier photos and I appreciate the blue arrow showing the person. I would have missed it! I also love seeing the flowers. Thank you for linking up and so GREAT to hear from you.

  19. Hello John- This was Very nicely done,the photos are just Excellant,Very Sharp and Clear.I sure like the calendar top and menu,that you posted.Great overview of Mount Rainier,and the surrounding area.
    Your Railroad Friend,Craig

  20. Your Mount Rainier adventure sounds breathtaking. The photos and details really bring the experience to life.

  21. dear John your trip to mount rainier looks awesome !
    i am amazed you decided to visit such cool and wonderful place as snow on the mountain looks divine !
    each shot make feel almost there and how nice a little wind made it more pleasant :)
    it must be amazing to visit with friends as it is hardly two hours away from your beautiful city
    thanks for images that make my day always
    loved the bird and blooms
    i loved your seed story most!
    how inspiring and heartfelt wow
    i totally agree that Nature has treasures for humans but we are distracted by so many meaningless things which keep us away from true joy of life
    in your story Nature keeps it's promise so beautifully that one who keeps up with she rewards him back with greater gifts :) your flower from those seeds look so gorgeous !!!
    best wishes for all your next adventures !

  22. I've never experienced snow yet, John. But I have a feeling I will soon. Oh, those flowers are so beautiful. And those cruise ships. How luxurious! What camera was used for the full moon? My phone can't always capture its beauty.

  23. Mt. Ranier is so majestic and your photos are wonderful. Love seeing the ships out on Puget Sound!


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