Mount Rainier Watch site tracks the famous peak

A view of the peak of Mount Rainier with a city and traffic lights in the foreground
Mount Rainier rises more than 14,000 feet in elevation. | Photo by @soysizzle via Instagram

It’s a question that’s totally Seattle: Is the mountain out? If you even have to ask “which mountain?”… uh, you’re probably not from around here. We’re talking Mount Friggin’ Rainier — among the most prominent crests on Earth, but one that’s often shrouded by cloud cover.

Thankfully, new web-based app Mount Rainier Watch keeps a close eye on that elusive, mighty giant with crowdsourced data. Every day, you can log on to see where in the Puget Sound you might be able to see Mount Rainier best and whether it’s fully out or just kinda out — not that we’re natural wonder stalkers or anything.

🏔️ Who came up with this thing?

The site is the brainchild of local developer David Lindahl, who has been running the popular Mount Rainier Watch Twitter + Instagram accounts for years (with 50,000+ followers between the two).

David became obsessed with Rainier — aka Tahoma — while commuting from Green Lake to downtown, tweeting about how well he could see the majestic beast from the city. Rainier ranks fifth in height in the lower 48 states, and second to Mount Shasta in total volume of the cone for a single peakso there’s plenty to track.

“It’s just the most beautiful thing in the world,” David says. “There aren’t too many mountains that have that skyline dominance.” No argument there.

🏔️ True cloud computing

Much of what’s on the site now is a bit bare bones. But David — who works on the site with his engineer brother — plans to make it more detailed + uber-nerdy. Expect photo uploads, popular webcam view integrations + gamification settings so people can earn points for mountain reporting. Eventually, a smartphone app will arrive, too.

In the meantime, those who visit the site can also find some merch where a portion of proceeds go to support nonprofits that protect National Parks + help fight wildfires. Be sure to also send in any reports on that fickle Mountain, too — the site needs all the local peepers it can get.