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Mt St Helens or Mt Rainier In june?

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Mt St Helens or Mt Rainier In june?

I have two and a half days. Thinking one day seattle. half day maybe Bainbridge Island and one day for a mountain trip-which one?

Everett, Washington
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2,459 posts
55 reviews
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1. Re: Mt St Helens or Mt Rainier In june?

Wow...Mt. Rainier vs. Mt. St. Helens....

Well, Rainier you can see from everywhere. St. Helens is a unique look at the eruption effects and recovery. It is a LOT longer drive from Seattle but not as slow due to mostly freeway...so close to a wash time wise.

Here is a link to the VolcanoCam...live looks at St. Helens (when the weather cooperates):


SR504, the road to the visitor centers was closed last November due to a landslide but I am not sure if that is before the Coldwater Ridge visitor center. The center changes to summer hours on May 17. So road conditions may have an impact on tours there.

Gray Line has an 11 hour tour from Seattle for $79.


If the weather looks like it will be clear my personal opinion would be St. Helens because you can see as much of Rainier as you are going to anyway and you can't see St. Helens from Seattle at all. Besides, it might be "smoking". Lava dome building continues. Don't expect flowing lava...St. Helens is more like toothpaste slowly being squeezed out.

We face the same choice in Sept after our son's wedding in Seattle. I definitely plan a St. Helens visit. We've been there every five years so since the 1980 eruption. More often when we lived closer in Puyallup.

Green Valley...
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63 reviews
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2. Re: Mt St Helens or Mt Rainier In june?

I vote for Mt. St. Helens for reasons noted above.

Mt. Rainier drive and sights are beautiful, but two reasons not to go: one, the damage to roads and trails was substantial, unsure when they will be open; and two, snow cover. July, August and September are often the best months to see Mt. R. up close and personal.

Bainbridge Island? Unless personal reasons, we have far better sightseeing opportunities a bit further away, such as Hurricane Ridge and Whidbey Island.

Have a nice trip.

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3. Re: Mt St Helens or Mt Rainier In june?

Do not need to repeat previous two posts, except to agree MtStH, and Hurricane Ridge a far cut above Bainbridge.

Longview, Washington
Destination Expert
for Mount Rainier National Park
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2,582 posts
131 reviews
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4. Re: Mt St Helens or Mt Rainier In june?

Definitely Mt. St. Helens. The road to Coldwater is open now and by June the road will be open all the way to Johnston Ridge Visitor Center, which is must see. Be sure to go to the theater presentation there--it is great! At Johnston Ridge you can look right into the crater and see the growing lava dome.

Also recommend the Weyerhaeuser Learning Center, very interesting and free admission!

Salem, OR
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31 posts
21 reviews
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5. Re: Mt St Helens or Mt Rainier In june?

I think the real question is, do you want to see a mountain or a volcano? Two very, very different experiences! Personally, I'd go to St. Helens.

Fox Island...
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610 posts
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6. Re: Mt St Helens or Mt Rainier In june?

The wildflowers on Mt Rainier really don't start until July. In June the fields could still be snow covered. I would also recommend Mt St Helens and save Mt Rainier for some other time.

Seattle area
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7. Re: Mt St Helens or Mt Rainier In june?

If you want to see some nice cityscape views of Seattle, you could take the Bainbridge Island ferry (to Winslow) as a walk on, not by car, and enjoy the short crossing (35 min.) on the rear deck if the weather is nice. You could stroll around the small town of Winslow, have a latte, and return on the next ferry to Seattle.

It could be part of a walk along Seattle's waterfront, starting, if you like to walk a lot, at the new Olympic Sculpture Park at the far north end. On a clear day, you could have terrific views of the Olympic Mountains, or even Mt. Rainier from the ferry. For such a short time in Seattle, that is all that you need to see of Bainbridge. I used to live there, so I'm just comparing it to the many other possbilites for a visitor.

Wenatchee, WA
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8. Re: Mt St Helens or Mt Rainier In june?

I would pick Mt. St. Helens over Mt. Rainier if I'd never seen either before. Mainly for the opportunity to see the effects of a natural disaster and how nature is taking the area back. If my motivation was, however, for pure outdoor recreation and scenery I would choose Rainier.

Hope this helped.


9. Re: Mt St Helens or Mt Rainier In june?

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