Trip Report    

Day Hike, Loop: Burroughs Mountain, Glacier Basin trail, Sunrise Trail, Sunrise Rim Trail, Wonderland

Clockwise loop with side trip to Third Burroughs, 12.2 miles, 3700' elevation gain.

  • Road suitable for all vehicles
  • Start this trip on Glacier Basin trail from Hiker/Climber parking lot adjacent to the White River campground. Restroom with flush toilets is next to the parking lot.

    This is a strenuous hike. The first 3 miles are a gradual ascent (~2100’ gain in 3 mi) mostly forested, with some open breaks including the turn northward onto the Sunrise trail. Within ~½ mile after the turn, the Sunrise trail rises steeply thru multiple switchbacks before emerging on a talus slope where marmots are known to lounge on the boulders. Trail easy to follow across the talus slope, it’s about ¾ mile to intersection with Burroughs trail at ~7100’ elevation. To Third Burroughs, it’s a little over 1 mile. The ascent is moderate but may feel like more … at that altitude (>7000'), there’s ~23% less effective oxygen in the air😰. From 3rd Burroughs, return to 2nd Burroughs and, then, continue ~½ mile to 1st Burroughs (7402’ elevation). Between 2nd and 1st Burroughs, there’s ~400’ elevation gain. From 1st Burroughs, it’s about 5 miles downhill back to our starting point near the White River campground, passing by Glacier Overlook and Shadow Lake. Total of 12.2 miles, 3700' cumulative elevation gain.

    Sunrise trail (from Glacier Basin) at 6500'. Last of the trees before talus slope.
    Intersection Sunrise trail (from Glacier Basin) & Burroughs trail (about 7100'). From here, about 1 mi to Third Burroughs (in distance)

Clockwise loop with side trip to Third Burroughs. Ascend from Glacier Basin via Sunrise trail, jaunt over to Third Burroughs for lunch and spectacular views; onto, Second Burroughs where most other folx were congregated; then, Sunrise Rim trail and Wonderland trail back to our vehicles. Autumn colors in the golden sedges and crimson shrubs amongst the talus. Marmots whistling, then seen lounging on talus of the Sunrise trail and nibbling lupine on the Sunrise Rim trail. Amazingly, a flock of small birds soaring around Third Burrows. Barks (was that a dog? fox?) from below in the direction of Winthrop glacier and Mystic camp on the Wonderland trail. During our snack and lunch breaks, Golden Mantled Ground Squirrels scampered undeterred around our feet and unguarded packs boldly searching for morsels. Rumble from Mt Rainer had us turn to face the mountain, first to identify source of the rolling clatter, then witness the massive plume of the rockfall’s dust.

Dust plume raised by rockfall