Wildflowers & Wildflower Viewing Tips | Visit Rainier

Mt. Rainier Wildflowers

One of the most spectacular aspects of Mt. Rainier National Park is its world-renowned wildflower meadows. No matter what the length of your stay, a stroll among these seemingly endless fields of wildflowers is a must-do. Each July and August, Mt. Rainier’s meadows burst with color. Avalanche lilies, paintbrush, asters, daisies, cinquefoil, fireweed, purple shooting stars and so many others, blanket the mountain in every color of the rainbow.

Wildflower Viewing Tips

Top Wildflower Viewing Locations


Someone once stated, “a trip to Paradise is going to heaven before you die.” Wildflowers in every shade sway in the breeze, filling meadow upon meadow with brilliant colors. A network of sixteen trails skirt around these meadows. A great choice is the paved Skyline Trail, departing from the visitor center, providing fabulous flower views and it’s suitable for the whole family. Other area hikes with fantastic flower displays are Spray Park, Van Trump Park, and Indian Henrys.


On the other side of the mountain, visitors to Sunrise will witness a true alpine ecosystem. Sitting at 1,000 feet higher than Paradise, this ecosystem is especially fragile. In summer, mountain meadows abound with wildflowers; the Sourdough Ridge Trail is a popular, easy 2 ½ mile hike. At their height in summer, visitors can see acre upon acre of vivid wildflowers, with swaths of lupine, paintbrush, and red mountain heather.

Chinook Pass/Tipsoo Lake

Many photographers say that the wildflowers at Tipsoo Lake rival anything found at Paradise. Located at the summit of Chinook Pass, this subalpine lake and surrounding area is simply a wildflower seeker’s dream. Stroll through fields of vibrant color – the yellows, oranges, pinks, and purples of lupine, Indian paintbrush, partridge foot and many others set a dramatic scene. Easy area nature trails meander near the lake offering dazzling views of these world-class wildflower meadows. For a longer day hike, take the Naches Peak trail.

Wildflower Identification Guide

wdt_ID Name Wildflower Color Scientific Name
1 Alpine Aster Blue-purple Aster alpigenus
2 Alpine Phaceliab Blue-purple Phacelia sericea
3 Arnica, Broadleaf Yellow Arnica latifolia
4 Avalanche Lily White Erythronium montanum
5 Beargrass White Xerophyllum tenax
6 Bellflower Blue-purple Campanula piperi
7 Birds Beak Lousewort Red-pink Pedicularis ornithorhyncha
8 Bleeding Heart Pink Dicentra Formosa
9 Bog Orchid White Platanthera dilatata
10 Bracted Lousewort Yellow Pedicularis bracteosa
11 Buckwheat, Wild Yellow Eriogonum ovalifolium
12 Bunchberry, Canadian Dogwood White Cornus Canadensis
13 Buttercup Yellow Ranunculus eschscholtzi
14 Butterwort Blue-purple Pinguicula vulgaris
15 Cascade Azalea White Rhododendron albiflorum
16 Cinquefoil Yellow Potentilla spp.
17 Coiled Beak Lousewort White Pedicularis contorta
18 Coltsfoot White Petasites frigidus
19 Columbian Lewisia Pink Lewisia columbiana
20 Columbine Red-orange Gilia aggregate
21 Cow Parsnip White Heracleum lanatum
22 Devil's Club White Oplopanax horridus
23 Elephant's Head Lousewort Blue-purple Pedicularis groenlandica
24 False Hellebore White Veratrum viride
25 Fan Leaf Cinquefoil Yellow Cinquefoil flabellifolia
Name Wildflower Color Scientific Name
Alpine Aster

Alpine Aster

The Alpine Aster is a widespread wildflower often found in drier meadows and stony slopes common in the Sunrise area of Mount Rainier National Park. ...
Alpine Phaceliab

Alpine Phaceliab

Alpine Phaceliab is a rare wildflower that grows in the summer season in the Mount Rainier area. Learn more at VisitRainier.com. ...


Coltsfoot is one of the first wildflowers to be seen during the spring season in the Mount Rainier area.  ...
Arnica, Broadleaf

Arnica, Broadleaf

Broadleaf Arnica is a common subalpine species; it can be found growing alone or in clustered groups formed from spreading rootstock. ...


Columbine is a subalpine wildflower that grows in the Mount Rainier area. ...

Bracted Lousewort

The Bracted Lousewort also is known as Wood Betony, this is a subalpine wildflower that can be found in the Mount Rainier area.  ...

Buckwheat, Wild

Buckwheat, Wild, there are many varieties of this species but in general, it is a tough perennial herb which forms mats in gravelly soil.  ...
Bunchberry, Canadian Dogwood

Bunchberry, Canadian Dogwood

Bunchberry, Canadian Dogwood, Cornus canadensis is a slow-growing herbaceous subshrub growing 10–20 cm tall, generally forming a carpet-like mat. ...


Pinguicula vulgaris, the Common butterwort, is a perennial carnivorous plant in the Lentibulariaceae family.  ...

Fan-Leaf Cinquefoil

Fan-leaf Cinquefoil is common in higher elevation subalpine areas such as the Sunrise area of Mount Rainier National Park.  ...