Friday, August 1, 2008

Updated news and access

I have updated the recent news, access and conditions, and monthly report, along with adding a Web page on information about photography permits in the NP.

The news is that the snowpack is on its last patches below 6,000 feet elevation and only in protected or shaded areas or on north sides of ridges, and so the wildflowers are out along with the bugs. Sorry, you can't have one without the other in Mt. Rainier NP, and with the high snowpack and late snowmelt, both are later than normal, and depending on the weather, which has been cooler than normal, will last until mid-late August, or the first freeze.

There still is considerable snow above 6,000 feet elevation, meaning many trails including Spray Park, a popular wildflower area. And Sunrise still has snow in areas and above, but it's also melting, so sometime in early-mid August the trails should be in shape for hiking and photography almost everywhere in the NP.

On the horizon are the last two quadrants and a backcountry hiking and photography guide, which are listed in the table of contents. I did find these cool map view of Mt. Rainier NP. I hope they work on enhancements to make it even better.

And so that's it for now. I hope the photo guide helps, and you're always welcome to send me comments, suggestions, questions or problems.

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