Mt Rainier NW - Spray Park and Cataract Valley

The hike on day 3 was the highlight by far - traversing up and across Spray Park and descending through Cataract Canyon.

Not more than a mile above camp things start to open up.

The ridge across the valley

There were a few flowers but we had missed the peak. Here the indian paintbrush seem to have gotten fried by the recent heat wave.

But after days in the forest with minimal views, Spray Park gave us those views

After crossing the high point at 6400', we started the long descent into Cataract Valley. We were truly in the alpine up here.

This creek coming out from this pile of talus was truly pre-filtered

Mist Park at the head of Cataract Valley (we hiked farther to the right)

Dropping out of the alpine with Mother Mountain in the background

Plenty of running water even in this driest of years

Continue to the Carbon River and Ipsut Creek