Country farms and Mount Rainier

The work on the truck was done, but I still had a week or so before the work on the trailer would be completed by Wescraft, so I decided to enjoy a day trip into ‘them thar hills’ in order to scope out the area around Kanaskat-Palmer State Park where I would be going on my first camping adventure.  While out in the area, I also drove through the campground itself and picked out my three or four favorite campsites so that I could make an online reservation after I got back home.

The area around Kanaskat State Park was in the foothills of the Cascade Mountains.  It’s plenty far enough away from the big cities of Seattle and Tacoma that the drive there was through lovely, pastoral farmland that had been carved out of large evergreen forests.

Such beautiful countryside.  Farms and fences and horses and fields and mountains.  That’s Mount Rainier in the background, by the way.

Is that an old playhouse and a new playhouse?  Or maybe that’s the old pump house?  Or the old outhouse?  Maybe where they kept their moonshine?

In the “town” of Krain, there were two buildings still standing .. this was one of them and it had been the gas station/garage.  You could just imagine how busy it once was with cars and trucks and farm tractors coming and going and folks talking with each other about the weather and the crops and what happened in church last Sunday.

The Krain Restaurant (built in 1916) was on the corner opposite from the garage and still seemed popular today although the bar was permanently closed.  That was it .. the whole town .. two buildings.  There was a nearby cemetery with headstones dating from 1901.

Ok, one more photo of Mount Rainier.  At 14,411 feet, it is an active “stratovolcano” and considered one of the most dangerous volcanoes in the world since it is huge, since it is so close to the greater metropolitan areas of Seattle and Tacoma, and since it is long past due to erupt.

It is known by local native Salishan people as Talol or Tacoma or Tahoma from their words meaning “mother of water”.  Native Puyallup people have long called it Tacoma from their words “ta” meaning “larger” and “Koma” which is their name for Mt. Shukshan.  Indeed, Mount Rainier is substantially larger than Mt. Shukshan (elevation slightly over 9,000 feet).  One name used for a long, long time that may be close to the original pronunciation is Tacobeh.

These days, about 10,000 people attempt to climb to the summit each year with only around 50% succeeding and with an average of 2-3 people dying each year.  This mountain should not be underestimated.

Mount Rainier National Park became the fifth national park in the USA in 1899.  It covers more than 236,000 acres or about 370 square miles, and includes the entire mountain within its borders, with National Forest land surrounding the National Park.  The Park has campgrounds, trails, an excellent visitor’s center, wildflower meadows, ancient forests, more glaciers than any other mountain in the lower 48 states, abundant wildlife, and numerous webcams here.  Someday I’ll take my big white truck and Towhee the trailer and head up to one of the campgrounds on/around Mount Rainier for a camping adventure.  If she doesn’t “blow” while I’m there, I’ll tell you all about it.  🙂

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