“A popular and easily accessible route, skirting the slopes of Mount Rainier and Paradise Glacier.”
— Tom Robson
Birding · River/Creek · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife
Check current trail conditions before starting this route. Early season trail use may be hazardous. Rest on benches or rocks. Please do not sit or walk on delicate subalpine plants.
Treat water before drinking. Fires are prohibited. No pets on trails.
This route starts and ends at the Henry M. Jackson Visitor Center, and is one of the more popular routes in the Paradise area.
As one might expect, the closer Skyline brings you to Mount Rainier, the better the views become. Especially if you're interested in getting up close and personal with Paradise Glacier.
Need to Know
Several sections of the park are designated as day use only. These areas have been closed to overnight camping due to previous resource damage caused by concentrations of people in areas too fragile to sustain such use. Paradise is a day use only area. Please stay only on the constructed trails and help minimize impact on this delicate environment. Current trail conditions are available park-wide from wilderness information centers, ranger stations, and visitor centers.
Generally a good running route, the initial ascent proves difficult due to steep grades, and crowding. The further you get from the visitor center, the easier the running becomes.
The trailhead is located near the entrance to the Jackson Visitor Center at Paradise, marked by stone steps inscribed with a quote by John Muir.
Running the loop clockwise, the trail climbs 2 miles until reaching Panorama Point
, where a toilet is provided for trail users. Past Panorama Point
the trail begins its one mile descent to the junction with the Golden Gate
Trail. Another 0.75 mile and the Skyline Trail reaches the Stevens-Van Trump Memorial and its junction with the Paradise Glacier Trail. From there it descends into the Paradise Valley, then climbs slightly to Myrtle Falls and finally back to Paradise.
For a shorter version of this loop, take the Golden Gate
Trail back to Paradise.
Flora & Fauna
The trail offers stunning displays of subalpine wildflowers, a close-up look at Mount Rainier and the Nisqually Glacier, and, on a clear day, views of peaks as far south as Oregon's Mount Hood.