Sunset on Mount Rainier as viewed from Longmire. Photo taken in field across from the National Park Inn.
Mount Rainier dominates the Seattle-Tacoma area , where more than 1.5 million know it fondly as The Mountain. The Mountain is, however, the most dangerous volcano in the Cascade Range, owing to the large population and to the huge area and volume of ice and snow on its flanks that could theoretically melt to generate debris flows during cataclysmic eruptions.
Northwest Native Americans knew of Mount Rainier long before European explorers reached the Pacific Ocean. For generations, they knew the mountain as Takhoma, Tahoma, and several other names. The different variations of the same word all meant "big mountain" or "snowy peak." The Longmire area was named after James Longmire, and early settler who, drawn by the colorful soda springs, filed a mineral claim. Longmire's early homestead cabin is still standing.