Summit Lake sits just outside the northwest edge of Mount Rainier National Park.
If you go on a clear day, you are rewarded with an amazing view of not only the big mountain, but other summits in western Washington.
Starting at the trailhead, you wind your way through a fir and hemlock forest. At around a mile in, you reach the now-frozen Twin Lake. From there, it's a steady climb up a ridgeline until you reach an open meadow and the Summit Lake basin. It's roughly three miles from the trailhead.
If you make it to the basin, it's worth doing the loop around the lake. You get a view that just keeps on giving. From a vantage point above the lake, you can see Mount Baker, Glacier Peak, Mount Stuart among others. If the sky is clear enough, you can even see all the way to downtown Seattle.
Keep in mind the road to get to the trailhead is very rough, and requires a little extra clearance with your vehicle.
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