Mount Beljica is just outside the boundary of Mount Rainier National Park, so you can bring your dog and still experience a well-kept trail leading to astounding views of Washington's tallest mountain.
From the trailhead at the end of Forest Road 5920, start walking uphill. The trail climbs steeply at first, but after 0.8 miles it flattens out as you reach Lake Christine.
Admire the trees reflecting in the lake and watch for ospreys perched overhead. Stick to the main trail as it wraps around the east side of lake, ignoring spurs that lead to campsites surrounding the lake. At just less than 1.2 miles, you reach another junction. (If you look carefully, you will see the word “Summit” scratched into a log at this junction.) Head uphill here, to the left. The trail to the right leads to Goat Lake, Beljica Meadows, and beyond.
The final quarter mile before the summit is steep and rooty, but before you know it, you reach a rocky clearing, and Mount Rainier suddenly reveals itself, looming large to the northeast, so close you can see details of the crevasses on the mountain. On a clear day, Mount Adams and Mount St Helens will also be visible to the south.
The summit of Beljica is rocky and exposed, so keep kids and dogs close.