Discover Wildflowers

Rows of bright blue-purple penstemon wildflowes.
Penstemon wildflowers growing along the road to Sunrise.

NPS Photo

 

Mount Rainer's renowned wildflowers bloom for a limited amount of time every year. The "peak" bloom for wildflowers is heavily dependent on weather and precipitation patterns, so accurate predictions are difficult. In most years, many flowers will be blooming by mid-July, and by the first of August the meadows should be very impressive. Frost can occur by late August, but even after light frosts the meadows continue to be very beautiful, thanks to changing leaf colors and seed pod development that take the place of colorful blossoms.

For a better idea of what the wildflowers are doing this year, please see the Currently Blooming section below, which summarizes what's blooming where.

Explore further:

  • Wildflower Guide - Unfamiliar with Mount Rainier's wildflowers? Photos and brief descriptions of some of the common wildflower species can be found in the park's online wildflower guide.
  • Wildflower photo galleries - Collections of subalpine and forest wildflowers.
  • Wildflower video gallery - Preview Mount Rainier's blooming wildflower meadows by watching these short videos.
  • The Seasons of Mount Rainier - View short videos of different plants found in various parts of the park.
  • Ecological Restoration - Watch short videos about the Ecological Restoration program's work in the park.

 
A shrubby plant with glossy, dark green pointed leaves and clusters of bright yellow flowers in front of a small wood building.
Holly-leaf Oregon-grape in Longmire, 6/13/22.

NPS Photo

Currently Blooming

Last Updated: June 17, 2022
With a cool, wet spring so far, subalpine areas are still covered in snow. However, grey, rainy days can make the color of wildflower blooms shine in comparison. Holly-leaf Oregon-grape (Berberis aquifolium) is less common than the related Cascade Oregon-grape, but has similar bright yellow blooms. Holly-leaf Oregon-grape has distinctive spiny dark green leaves and can grow into shrubs 3-9 feet tall. Several are currently blooming in the Longmire area.

NOTE: Always check current trail conditions before heading out!

Please stay on the trails. As snow melts away, it may be tempting to skirt remaining patches of snow that are covering trails. However, by going off trail you are walking on and damaging the wildflowers that you may be coming to see! It is better to stay on the trail even if that means crossing snow, particularly in the high-visitation meadows around Paradise and Sunrise. Also, there are plenty of opportunities for the perfect mountain + wildflower photo from the trails! No need to step off trail and crush other flowers in your quest for the perfect shot.

 

Wildflower Reports

  • Longmire (5/13) - holly-leaf Oregon-grape, Cascade Oregon-grape, yellow violets, wild strawberry, trillium (late), skunk cabbage (late)
  • Ohanapecosh Hot Springs Nature Trail (6/7) - yellow violets, star-flowered Solomon's seal (early), large-leaved avens, vanilla leaf, Hooker's fairybell, vine maple, large leaf maple, devil's club, Cascade Oregon-grape, trillium (late), buttercup, bunchberry (early), Calypso orchid
  • Nisqually Entrance to Longmire Road (5/25) - skunk cabbage, coltsfoot, trillium, with holly-leaf Oregon-grape blooming around Nisqually Entrance
 
Mountain Bog Gentian
Mountain Bog Gentian

NPS Photo

Wildflower Photos
The photos featured here are usually taken by park staff and volunteers from all over the park. Share your own wildflower photos in the Mount Rainier Flickr group! Higher resolution versions of wildflower photos are available on Mount Rainier's Flickr page.

Plan Your Visit
Paradise
and
Sunrise are two of the main visitor center areas at Mount Rainier National Park. Both areas are well known for their impressive wildflower meadows. The park also maintains dozens of trails perfect for wildflower viewing.

 
 

Last updated: June 17, 2022

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