Quarantine Memories: Mt Rainier

I’m gonna switch it up and not write about cancer in this post because after all this blog is called Trips and Salsa. Here’s one of the trips I went on last year:

I was in Seattle for a dear friend’s wedding and decided to stay in town a few extra days to see family and friends. I also wanted to take a trip up to Mt Rainier since I couldn’t even remember the last time I was there, if ever.

I grew up in Seattle with a gorgeous view of all of downtown and both Mt Baker and Mt Rainier, so I saw it every day but moved away at 18 and I miss those gorgeous giants.

My friends Caroline and Jess were up for the adventure too! So off we went…

First stop was Grove of the Patriarchs. I wanted to see this bridge.

We you can only cross one person at a time.

It wasn’t much of a hike (1 mile) which was nice but was GORGEOUS and not like any hikes I could go on in Southern California.

Then we made our way through the park to Reflection Lake. What a beaut.

Then we made our way to the National Park Visitor Center where we watched a movie about the park and ate lunch. How could we not get Rainier Beers to drink on Mt Rainier?!

Then we hiked to Myrtle Falls. It was another easy stroll but a lovey trail. I felt like Julie Andrews because the hills were alive with the Sound of Music.

It was a fun day with two great friends. Glad I extended my trip to trek up the mountain I used to stare at daily. ❤

Red Rock Canyon

Amelia and I are always on the look out for cool adventures to do near us. We scour Pinterest for ideas and often times get discouraged because it seems like we’ve done all the cool things in Southern California, which clearly isn’t true but we still have a hard time finding new places to explore. So I was stoked when she presented me with this one.

Disclaimer: I also have a hard time sharing locations of cool places because I hate when secret spots are no longer secret. I remember when we would to go Lanikai Beach on Oahu and there would only be a few other people there and then it was put in all the magazines are top 10 best beaches in the world and then it was jam packed with tourists at all times. But if places weren’t geotagged, I wouldn’t know where they were either. So you’re welcome, 4 followers of mine.

The hike was super easy to get to. It’s the Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park in Lake Forest next to a Ralphs. You have to pay $3 to park and the entrance is easy to locate.

I just read that there’s a lot of mountain lion attacks on this hike so maybe don’t go, or at least be on the look out. Haha I wish I would have known that before we went but oh well. The hike itself was mellow. It was pretty flat without a lot of incline BUT there were a million mountain bikers which made it difficult to hike because we kept having to pull over to let them by.

The total hike was about 4.2 miles and took almost two hours (depending on how much time you spend in the canyon). We heard that it was a good spot for sunset and we arrived to the canyon a little before sunset but I was worried about daylight because it took us a little longer to hike in that I had expected.

The hike looked pretty basic brown dirt and unexciting dying brush and trees and we were wondering how on earth a canyon that looks like Utah or Arizona would just appear but it did! Look how EPIC!

We started hiking out and it was getting dark fast. Bats started flying around our heads. I kid you not. And then we heard creepy sounds and it truly felt like a Halloween Hike. The last 15 minutes we were hiking in the dark which made it even spookier. We used our phone flashlights and made it out. So I don’t really recommend it for sunset unless you have flashlights and enjoy night hiking. For three girls and a baby, it was a little much.

The best part of making it out alive was that there’s a McDonalds across the street! I crave orange soda after I break a sweat so this was a win for me.