At 7.5 miles round-trip, the Palisades Lake Trail is an excellent hike if you are in Mount Rainier National Park planning for a moderate hike that lacks nothing in terms of beautiful alpine scenery. Leaving from Sunrise Point, where you'll have stunning views of Rainier's Sourdough Mountains, the Enchantments, and the North Cascades, this trail plunges into a basin blessed with multiple pristine lakes, wildflower meadows, and healthy populations of wildlife. The trail weaves back and forth from lake to lake, some accessible via short spurs; Sunrise, Clover, Tom, Dick and Harry Lakes, and Hidden Lake are some of the named lakes you'll see before you encounter Upper Palisade Lake (west) and Lower Palisades Lake (northeast) at the end of the trail. The trail undulates through sections of dense forest and open clearings, giving this hike a wonderful variety.
As is the case with many hikes in this area, access depends on snowpack. Camping is allowed with a wilderness permit at Dick Lake and at Upper Palisade Lake. Note that dogs are not allowed on trails in the park.