I took the opportunity to make the most of my waking up at 5am (due to the time difference) to drive an hour and hike the 5miles of the Tolmie Peak trail to see the sun come up over Rainier.
It was late season (Oct 17th) and the trail closes in November. About 1300ft of gain (probably 650 in the last 2/3 of a mile or so to the peak). Light snow on the trail that was only just starting to get sloppy on the way back. I took 3L of water, some pop tarts and my 10 essentials in my little Marmot 18L and it did fine up and back. Shed my Patagonia nano puff and MEC breathable soft shell on the way up and they both fit in it fine.
Spectacular views from the old ranger lookout, and overall a hike well worth doing in the fall.
All photos iPhone 4S!