Tolmie Peak Trail

Wilkeson, Washington 98396

Tolmie Peak Trail

Tolmie Peak Trail Professional Review and Guide

"This very popular hike travels through forest and meadow to a fire lookout atop Tolmie Peak, which offers a spectacular view of the northwestern side of Mount Rainier. The trail also takes you by serene Eunice Lake, a mountain lake surrounded by jutting peaks and subalpine forest. The hike to Tolmie Peak is one of the most popular in the park for many reasons. Neither too long nor too rigorous, it provides the opportunity to explore subalpine forests and a serene lake, as well as the opportunity to catch a breathtaking panorama of Mount Rainier.

Tolmie Peak and Tolmie Peak Trail are named for Dr.William Fraser Tolmie. This doctor, led by Nisqually headman Lahalet, was the first recorded non–Native American to approach Mount Rainier. Unlike others to follow him, he desired not to summit Mount Rainier but rather to collect herbs for medicinal purposes and simply to enjoy the captivating scenery. Records indicate that he ascended all the way to Hessong Rock."

Tolmie Peak Trail Reviews

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I love this one. The trail is moderate and you will have to navigate some snow, but WOW. It is a wonderful opportunity to commune with Tolmie and the beautiful, stunning Mount Rainier in all of its magnificence.
First hike in a while and this was perfect. Eunice and Mowich lakes are perfectly clear and beautiful.
Wonderful hike, especially the actual ascent up to the top. Mowitch Lake and Eunice Lake are clear and deep blue. There was still snow on the trail up at Eunice Lake but it was passable. The best part of this hike is the unmaintained trail at the lookout station that goes to the true peak of Tolmie Peak. According to my daughter, "you can't say you climbed Tolmie peak unless you go to the top". So off we went. I could only go halfway before my nerves got the best of me. I waited while my daughter continue on with the fearlessness of a mountain goat. I noticed while sitting on the ridge that the accoustics are so good that I could hear the people below at the lake as they talked. You can also see Mowitch Lake from the top. As you hike the trail be sure to take a short 200 ft detour at Insput Pass just for the view, its great.
This is not the most interesting or rewarding trail when the weather is bad, we discovered. It rained hard the whole day, blocking all the views but those nearest at hand. The lake at the start of the trail was pretty, but we had trouble figuring out what to do on the trail, as there were numerous side trails entering and leaving, most unmarked. I'm still not sure what trail we hiked, but we did eventually arrive at a sign stating Tolmie Peak. The peak was a mystery though. All we saw was another lake and some beautiful flower meadows with a stream running though them. I will say the rain came with the blessing of empty trails and solitude. As a result, we were able to sit quietly and watch a young buck with tiny horn buds walk past us not 15 feet away. So, no wildly inspiring mountian views, but a few nice lakes and some wild life.
On this hike you get a bigger lake, a smaller lake, a great trail, a lookout cabin, and some exploration at the summit. Be sure to hike over to what may be the true summit of Tolmie Peak just a bit further along the ridge. Over there you can find solitude and different views. Most of the area around Eunice Lake is posted to stay off and no camping is allowed there. The best way to reach this place is via Ipsut Creek and Ipsut Pass, but it is longer.

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Trail Information

Nearby City
1,020 feet
Elevation Gain
Trail Type
Skill Level
2.5 to 4.5 hours
Mid-July to September
4,900 feet
Trailhead Elevation
5,900 feet
Top Elevation
Wilkeson Wilderness Information Center, Mowich Ranger Station
Local Contacts
USGS Carbon River; Trails Illustrated Mount Rainier National Park; Astronaut's Vista: Mount Rainier National Park; Earthwalk Press Hiking Map and Guide
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Jul 2018