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Sunrise Point, Mt. Rainier


"Sunrise at Sunrise" ©Dana Sohm

On Mt. Rainier’s northeastern slope lies the highest viewpoint reachable by automobile.
The area is simply called “Sunrise.”
Hardy visitors willing to brave bone-chilling predawn temperatures,
may be rewarded with spectacular displays of color.
Before the sun is visible to the observer, its golden rays first illuminate
a thin sliver of the mountain’s summit.

The golden sliver broadens and descends,
contrasting vividly with luminous blue reflected from the still dark sky.
Within minutes, sunlight chases the skylight completely away.
By the time direct sunlight reaches the Sunrise parking lot,
and begins to melt away the night frost,
the first blue, then golden-hued, glaciers have brightened into glistening white.
The day has begun.

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