Climbing Reservations FAQ

Attention: A new reservation system is being developed and implemented for the 2017 season.  It is an online google form system.  I will be working on new FAQ answers and publishing them shortly.

- February 16, 2017

How do I make a reservation to climb Mount Rainier?
You may request a reservation for your climbing party by visiting the Reservation Page of the Mount Rainier National Park website. Follow the directions to print out the forms provided and make a reservation request. Completed forms can be faxed or mailed to the park beginning March 15th (Note that reservations received between March 15 through March 31 will be processed in random order, and starting April 1 each reservation is processed in the order it was received). Requests sent or postmarked before this date (March 15) will not be processed. Reservations can also be made in person at the Longmire Wilderness Information Center beginning Memorial Day weekend.  Rangers cannot make reservations over the telephone.

Do I need a reservation to climb Mount Rainier?
Reservations are OPTIONAL, and they are not always needed. 40% of all camping sites are held aside for those who come to the mountain without reservations. These non-reservable slots usually go quickly. For much of the summer many of the popular high camps fill up and reservations are strongly recommended - especially on weekends.

What is the cost of a climbing reservation?
The RESERVATION fee is $20 per party. In addition, climbing pass fees are required for every member of your climbing party. Fees are payable by credit/debit card, or check. The park accepts Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express.  You'll find all these forms on the park website.

Is the reservation fee refundable?
The reservation fee is NON-REFUNDABLE, even if you cancel your permit.

What information is required to make a climbing reservation?
You will need to fill out the Reservation Request form found at the link above, which covers the specifics of your planned climb including:
  • Dates of your trip
  • Preferred camping locations
  • Number of people in your party
  • Basic personal information about the trip leader (name, address, etc.)
  • Payment for the reservation fee and the Mount Rainier Climbing Pass Fee for the entire party
  • The names of those in your party who have already purchased a current Mount Rainier Climbing Pass and their climbing pass number.
Do I need to know who will be in my party when I make climbing reservations?
No, you may purchase the necessary number of Mount Rainier Climbing Passes for your reservation and then distribute them to your teammates. The party leader need only specify the number of climbers in the party and pay the climbing fee for those slots. If one or more members of the team have already purchased a climbing pass for the current calendar year, the names and pass numbers of those members must be specified along with the reservation request.

When will I hear if my climbing reservation has been accepted or rejected?
Within approximately two weeks of requesting a reservation, a confirmation letter with the specified number of Mount Rainier Climbing Passes will be sent to the leader. A letter of rejection will be sent if the climb cannot be accommodated, although if there's a contact number on the reservation request form, a ranger will try to contact you via phone. The response time may be longer during the first two weeks of April since we're processing all of the requests from March 15-31 at once, randomly.

Why would my climbing reservation request be rejected?
If the available overnight camping slots are already reserved at the camp(s) you requested, your climbing reservation request will be rejected.

What can I do to help ensure my climbing reservation request is not rejected?
By providing several alternative overnight camp locations, you are more likely to get a suitable reservation. The larger your climbing party size the more likely it is that a particular camp may not be able to accommodate your group. Smaller parties may have an advantage in this respect.

Do I pay anything if my climbing reservation request is rejected?
No. If your climbing reservation request is rejected, you will not be charged the reservation fee or Mount Rainier Climbing Pass fee.

Can I return a Mount Rainier Climbing Pass?
Mount Rainier Climbing Passes are NON-REFUNDABLE.

Can I make a change to my climbing reservation?
Changes may be made as long as notice is received at least 14 days in advance of your climb and if the change can be accommodated given the limited nature of the park's camping resources. Party size may be increased (if space is available) but any reduction in party size will not result in a refund as climbing passes are non-refundable.

How do I make a change to my climbing reservation?
Call either the Longmire Wilderness Information Center's HIKE line (360) 569-6650 or the Climbing Information Center (360) 569 6641.

Does it cost anything to make a change to my climbing reservation?
One change may be made to your reservation at no cost. Each subsequent change will cost $20.

What if a member of the team already has a current Mount Rainier Climbing Pass when I make a reservation request?
Include the pass numbers and names of those with the current valid climbing passes with your reservation request.  There's a form on the park's reservation page specifically for this called the "Climbing Party Supplemental Form."<-->