Panhandle Gap via Summerland Trail
2 reviews Mount Rainier National Park #125 hike out of 275 in
2 hrs 30 min
This is a moderate one way trail to Panhandle Gap in Mount Rainier National Park.
This is an alternate route for Panhandle Gap via Wonderland Trail and Summerland Trail.
Summerland- Panhandle Gap
Hiked with Braton. First ~3miles pretty flat meandering walk through the forest. A waterfall viewpoint. Does gain some steady incline and the terrain becomes a little more rugged, but really well maintained. View of rainier straight ahead to the right. Slightly foggy. From there switchbacks lead through some pretty wildflowers. Some incline then opens into the meadow just before the campsites. From there lots of stairs along the creek/waterfalls. Lots of pink bell flowers and greenery. After 2 log bridges the vegetation really dies out. Lots of glaciers and 2small snow melt lakes. 1was really turquoise, really pretty from the top. Keep following the rock path, pretty easy to follow. Towards the end of the hike you cross 3 snow fields. First one wide, flat. Other a bit more incline, but fine to cross with or without poles way up. Way down I used mine the whole way. We decided to head up to the peak straight ahead (other trail went down into meadow to the left).