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Rainier Paradise --  Chris Carvalho/Lensjoy.com

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Washington's Mt. Rainier is the USA's fifth national park, created in 1899.  It's easy to see why.  It's a place of stunning and unique vistas with a 14,409-foot volcanic mountain located in a rainforest climate, making for a great variety of life zones in a well-watered landscape.  At just about any time of year it's possible to come here and find something to photograph.  There are lakes with reflections, mighty rivers, rumbling glaciers, snowbound winter scenery, alpenglow, sunlit clouds, wildflower meadows, and fall foliage.  In 2011 while I was going through cancer treatment there was a stretch of sunny fall weather.  I felt well enough to make a short trip, so Bob Strebin and I visited the park and found the huckleberries in the Paradise area at their peak.  We stayed for just two days, but had jaw-dropping views at just about every stop we made.  

There is something about this park that conveys the feeling of an awesome power, as if the volcano's unseen force belowground is straining with all its might to reach the surface.  The mountain is known for violent snowstorms, landslides of rock and mud called lahars that bury roads and trails—changing the course of rivers—and avalanches that have killed dozens of climbers trying to reach the summit.  But on this peaceful day, Rainier did none of that.  Instead, the peak the Indians called Tahoma did only one thing:  radiate beauty.  

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Info:  Chromira digital print of Provia 100F 4x5 chrome, Fuji Crystal Archive CD paper
 

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