Mt. Rainier National Park FAQ's | Visit Rainier

Frequently Asked Questions | FAQs

Welcome to the Mount Rainier region. Listed below are commonly asked questions with answers. If you have a question and don’t see the answer please reach out to us. We’re happy to help and we’d love to hear from you. 

Q: How much does it cost to visit Mt. Rainier National Park?

A: There are a variety of options for fees and passes at Mt. Rainier National Park. The most common option is the Mount Rainier Single Vehicle Fee of $30 which grants unlimited entry for one vehicle and passengers for seven consecutive days. The vehicle must be private, noncommercial, and with a seating capacity of 15 or less. There are additional options for annual passes, walk-ups for people who hike, bike, or ride a motorcycle. Click here for the complete list.

 

Q: Are dogs allowed at Mt. Rainier National Park? 

A: The short answer is, not on the trails. A longer answer is, dogs on a leash can accompany a visitor in places where you can drive a vehicle. So areas like officially developed campgrounds, parking lots, and paved roads near viewpoints are areas where visitors can take a dog on a leash. Click here for the MRNP official pet policy.  There are dog-friendly trails in the region located outside of the national park. Click here for a free copy of our travel guide with a complete list of dog-friendly trails and more. 

 

Q: Is Mt. Rainier National Park open year-round? 

A: Yes, it is. Keep in mind there are multiple entrances to the national park. Only the Nisqually Entrance is open year-round.

 

Q: What’s the highest point of the mountain I can drive to? 

A: Sunrise is the highest point of Mount Rainier you can drive a vehicle to. This area is located at 6,400 feet elevation. The road to Sunrise is not open year-round. Click here to check the road status. Please note due to the steep, narrow, and winding nature of the Sunrise Road, it is recommended that RVs and vehicles with trailers longer than 25 feet LOA not travel up the Sunrise Road beyond the White River Campground intersection. Currently, there are no restrictions for unmodified motor coaches of standard length. 

 

Q: What are the hours of Mt. Rainier National Park? 

A: Mt. Rainier National Park does not publish operating hours for the different park entrances at this time. Typically when we get this question it’s from visitors who want to arrive really early in the morning for a sunrise hike, or late in the day for stargazing. If that’s your reason your best bet is to purchase a pass online ahead of time so that if you arrive and find the entrance station isn’t staffed you can enter the park and display your pre-purchased pass. Please note, during the wintertime, the gate at Longmire closes daily.

 

Q: What’s open during COVID? 

A: The Mt. Rainier region covers multiple counties, during the pandemic conditions may change. It’s always a good idea to check on the status of an area or attraction before departing for your hike, adventure, or road trip. Currently, the following areas are open: Mt. Rainier National Park, Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest, Gifford Pinchot National Forest, Pack Forest, Federation Forest, Crystal Mountain Resort, Northwest Trek Wildlife Park, and the Thunder Dome Car Museum. Guided trail rides at EZ Times Outfitters in Elbe and Echo River Ranch in Enumclaw are open. The lodging properties, most restaurants, and shops are open. 

 

Q: What’s closed during COVID? 

A: The visitor centers at Mt. Rainier National Park are closed and ranger-led activities are canceled. The Mt. Rainier Railroad is closed for the foreseeable future. 

 

Q: I have a specific Mt. Rainier National Park question I don’t see answered here. How can I contact the park directly? 

A: You can call the park directly at (360) 569-2211 or fill out this form to contact them via email. And just in case it’s helpful here’s a link to the park’s FAQ page.

 

Q: Mount Rainier is a volcano, is it safe to visit? 

A: Mount Rainier is monitored on an ongoing basis. The United States Geological Survey states an eruption is likely to be preceded by days to months or more of small earthquakes that could be detected giving communities time to be alerted and take precautions. For more information click here.

Q: Can I scatter my loved one’s ashes at Mount Rainier National Park? 

A: We’re sorry for your loss. Ashes may not be spread within half a mile of Tipsoo Lake or Reflection Lake. These areas are not available for Scattering of Ashes. Yes, however, you’ll need a special use permit for the scattering of ashes. Click here for more details. 

Q: If I want to camp overnight in the backcountry of Mount Rainier do I need a special permit? 

A: Yes, you’ll need a wilderness permit. For more information on wilderness permits click here.