MT. RAINIER, Wash. — You are invited to make lasting, brag-worthy memories around Mt. Rainier by trying one (or all) of these adventurous activities:
Soar high above a forest in the Zip Wild Adventure Courses at Northwest Trek.
Five exhilarating zip line/challenge courses run through Northwest Trek's breathtaking tree canopy. Each course contains sections of zip line separated by barriers that must be walked, climbed over or clambered through. The challenges vary from course to course but include elements like swinging log bridges, cargo nets, balance beams and tight ropes. No course is solely a harness-in-and-slide-along zip line; all require some mental toughness and physical agility. This is an amazingly fun and completely fulfilling wild adventure for the entire family! www.nwtrek.org/zipwild
Get close enough to smell a 2,000-pound bison or listen to the lullaby of howling wolves at Northwest Trek.
Stare into the eyes of a moose or get within a few feet of a bison during a morning ride on the wild side! Hop into the back of the keeper truck and experience the thrill of seeing these incredible animals up close as the keepers makes their rounds feeding these incredible creatures. www.nwtrek.org/keeper-tours
Also enjoy an opportunity to see the animals at night! Private tram tour, games, crafts, and other exciting activities make Northwest Trek’s overnight Family Camp a unique adventure. Northwest Trek provides relaxing campsites, a campers only after-hours tram tour, naturalist-led activities, s'mores and a hot breakfast Sunday morning. Campers need only bring a tent, camping supplies and dinner for Saturday night (or buy a meal at the Forest Café). SOLD OUT for 2015 but will return in 2016. www.nwtrek.org/family-camps
Dive with sharks at Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium.
Experience the heart-pumping thrill of getting up close to more than a dozen massive sharks. Learn more about these legendary creatures, their biology, and the challenges they face in the wild. Participants wear specially designed dry suits that zip over street clothes and seal out water, so no need to bring a swimsuit! Exciting for both certified divers and adventurous non-divers, this is a thrilling underwater journey not to be missed. www.pdza.org/dive
Take a scenic gondola ride to Washington State’s highest restaurant or get “Wild” on the Pacific Crest Trail at Crystal Mountain Resort.
The Mt. Rainier Gondola carries passengers on a relaxing 10-minute ride over wildflower meadows to the Summit House Restaurant at 6,872 feet, which offers one of the best views of Mt. Rainier. Bring a lunch and try out the Adirondack-style chairs on the ridgeline. After lunch, head back down the mountain for a walk along the trails at the base of Crystal Mountain Resort. Some of the trails connect to a portion of the Pacific Crest Trail, featured in the 2014 movie “Wild”. www.crystalmountainresort.com
Ride the rails through the foothills of Mt. Rainier aboard a steam locomotive.
Climb aboard living history for a fun-filled ride along the Northwest’s longest continuously operating steam railroad. This heritage railroad offers two-hour steam train excursions through the forests and foothills south of Mt. Rainier and includes a visit to the new museum, home to the most comprehensive collection of steam logging locomotives in the world! It also offers exciting themed events throughout the year. www.mrsr.com
Get up early and watch the sun come up at Sunrise in Mt. Rainier National Park.
At 6,400 feet, Sunrise is the highest point accessible by car inside Mt. Rainier National Park; being here as the sun rises is truly breathtaking. Pack a breakfast and put on warm clothes then prepare to check off this bucket-list worthy experience. www.visitrainier.com/family-fun-crystal-mt-sunrise
Visit Rainier is the official resource for tourism information in the Mount Rainier area. Go to www.visitrainier.com for more information.