Comet Falls RT: 3.8 miles / 900 feet
Trump Peak RT: 5.6 miles / 2200 feet
One of the highest waterfalls in the park, Comet Falls was named because it resembles the tail of a comet, or so some thought. Van Trump Park honors P. B. Van Trump, who with Hazard Stevens, was one of the first documented people to stand on the summit of Mount Rainier.
The Comet Falls trailhead is located four miles northeast of Longmire on the road to Paradise. Parking space is limited and often full. There is no more parking nearby, so have an alternate hike in mind.
For 1.9 miles the trail climbs steadily up hill until it reaches the base of Comet Falls. From there it switchbacks 0.8 miles uphill to the junction with the Rampart Ridge Trail. Van Trump Park is to the right, where the trail winds through the meadows until it dead ends in 0.5 miles.
Always check current trail conditions before heading out. Log footbridges frequently wash out during the winter or other conditions could be affecting the trail.
Along the Trail
The 320-foot Comet Falls is a popular destination for many hikers. Those folks who continue to Van Trump Park enjoy views Mount Adams and Mount St. Helens to the distant south, while the Kautz and Van Trump Glaciers dominate views of Mount Rainier to the north. Look for marmots, pikas, and mountain goats on rocky open slopes in the area.
There is no designated camp along this trail nor anywhere nearby. Permits are required for camping. Permits and current trail conditions are available park-wide from wilderness information centers, ranger stations, and visitor centers. Fires are prohibited. No pets on trails. Treat water before drinking.
This hike is listed as One-Way.
When hiking several trails on a single "hike", log it with a generic name that describes the hike. Then link the trails traveled, check out the example.
WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.