Backpack - Ipsut Creek Mt. Rainier National Park

Ipsut Creek Mt. Rainier National Park

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9:30 AM at Carbon River Ranger Station
This trip will combine an easy backpack with a strenuous dayhike.

****Leader will be in the backcountry Aug 22 - 25****

On Saturday, we’ll backpack about 5 miles along the Carbon River on nearly level trail to Ipsut Creek Campground, where we’ll set up our camp. We’ll overnight here in a reserved campsite on both Saturday and Sunday nights. On Sunday, we’ll dayhike from camp up the Carbon Glacier Trail, soon getting a close-up view of Carbon Glacier, the lowest-elevation glacier in the Lower 48 States. We’ll continue upwards, sometimes on steep, rough trail, traversing the lower slopes of Old Desolate and then winding through the flower meadows of lower Moraine Park to reach a 6,000-foot saddle on lower Curtis Ridge. As time allows, we’ll continue our hike along Curtis Ridge to gain a grand view of Mt Rainier and spectacular Willis Wall, as well as views of Carbon Glacier below us and more views out across the Winthrop Glacier to Steamboat Prow. We’ll then retrace our route back to Ipsut Creek Campground, where we’ll spend Sunday night. We’ll hike back to the ranger station and our cars on Monday morning.

Our pace will be moderate, with occasional breaks to rest, snack, and/or admire views and wildflowers.

Participants should have completed at least one previous backpack trip, and must be fit to backpack 5 miles on level trail and hike (carrying dayhiking gear) for 12+ miles on sometimes steep, rough trails, with elevation gain of 3,500+ ft/day, up to an elevation of 6,000+ ft.

We will take care to Leave No Trace (

Trip distance: about 22 miles

High point: 6000+ ft on Curtis Ridge

Elevation gain: 3500+ ft
Required Equipment

Required Equipment

The Ten Essentials
Trip Reports