Christine Falls

Mt Rainier National Park / Paradise, Washington, USA

About Christine Falls


Hiking Distance: roadside
Suggested Time:

Date first visited: 2011-08-25
Date last visited: 2011-08-25

Waterfall Latitude: 46.78103
Waterfall Longitude: -121.77964

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Christine Falls was a conspicuous waterfall that we stumbled upon after missing the trailhead for the nearby Comet Falls.

So given how easy it was to notice this waterfall, I have to believe that for most visitors passing through the Nisqually Entrance of Mt Rainier National Park, it would most likely be their first waterfall seen.

Rainier_195_08252011 - Christine Falls
Christine Falls

Therefore, I have to believe that it would be one of the most photographed subjects in Mt Rainier National Park as well.

The road between the Nisqually Entrance and Paradise (a little hamlet where a lot of tourist activity is at) crossed over Van Trump Creek between the upper and lower tiers of this waterfall.

There was a short paved trail leading to the lower viewpoint where we were able to see the main tier of the Christine Falls plunging beneath the Nisqually-Paradise Road as seen in the photograph above.

We were also able to walk onto that bridge from back on the road where we looked upstream to get even closer frontal views of the upper tiers of Christine Falls.

Rainier_202_08252011 - View of the upper tiers of Christine Falls from the road bridge cutting above it
View of the upper tiers of Christine Falls from the road bridge cutting above it

I even witnessed plenty of motorists just pause on the bridge and take photos before moving on (generally when no other cars were behind).

I’ve read that the Christine Falls was named after Christine Van Trump, the daughter of a mountaineer named P. B. Van Trump.

Christine was known for accompanying her father on an ascent of Mt Rainier (up to 10,000ft) despite a nervous disorder.

Authorities

Christine Falls resides in Mt Rainier National Park near Puyallup in Pierce County, Washington. It is administered by the National Park Service. For information or inquiries about the area as well as current conditions, visit their website.

Rainier_187_08252011 - Signpost pointing the way to the lower viewpoint of Christine Falls
Rainier_201_08252011 - Looking upstream from the road bridge above Christine Falls right at some upper cascades immediately nearby

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There are a pair of pullouts on both sides of the bridge over the falls just a little over a quarter mile east of the Comet Falls Trailhead (see Comet Falls page for more details).

The pullout east of the bridge is the larger one and can accommodate at least a half-dozen cars, I think.

Rainier_188_08252011 - The large pullout closest to the short trail leading down to the main lookout for Christine Falls
The large pullout closest to the short trail leading down to the main lookout for Christine Falls

As for geographical context, the Nisqually Entrance of Mt Rainier was 86 miles (supposedly under 2 hours drive) from Seattle and 50 miles (supposedly a little over an hour drive) from Puyallup. Of course with all the traffic restrictions and traffic lights, the reality was that it took at least 30-60 minutes more than what I’m quoting above.

Bottom up sweep from the lower viewpoint


Top down sweep from the footbridge crossing Van Trump Creek showing upper cascades upstream and more cascades as it continues downstream towards the main part of Christine Falls (not seen from here)


Fixated on the falls in motion from the lower viewing deck

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Tagged with: mt rainier, mount rainier, national park, paradise, pierce, washington, waterfall, van trump



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Johnny Cheng is the founder of the World of Waterfalls and author of A Guide to New Zealand Waterfalls. Over the last 2 decades, he has visited thousands of waterfalls in over 40 countries around the world and nearly 40 states in the USA.
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