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Mount Rainier NP

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Mount Rainier NP

Postby wingding » Sat Aug 05, 2006 3:35 pm

Last week I tried to get to the summit of Rainier, but ran out of steam at the "Flats" (11200'). I will be headed back next year to give it another shot. I learned that getting to the top in a roped team is a lot different than going solo up a mountain - no stops to catch your breath for between 1 hour and 1.5 hours, so I will be working on becoming a steady hiker instead of a stop and go hiker for next year. Rainier is a lot harder than anything I have ever done in the Sierra even Williamson, which was the same amount of gain over 2-days.

We went to Muir Camp in a snow storm, but it cleared up after that and was beautiful on the day we were supposed to summit and later in the week. Here is a picture of Rainier from the Palisade Glacier Trail on August 2, 2006:



Postby dodgerbill55 » Sat Aug 05, 2006 3:50 pm

Kathy, sorry you didn't make the summit. I'm sure you will make it next time. Beautiful picture.
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Postby wingding » Sat Aug 05, 2006 7:20 pm

Bill: I thought I would be more upset over not making the summit than I am. I had a really good time out there and learned a lot that will help me prepare for the next time, so it was a good trip. I also spent a couple days wandering around the park after the summit attempt and got to see some beautiful wildflowers.

Postby Rosabella » Mon Sep 11, 2006 6:15 am

Hi Kathy! First, I just wanted to say that your picture of Rainier is BEAUTIFUL!! It's as very photogenic mountain for sure, but your picture is amazing!

You had gone up late in the summer, and we had been having a LOT of really warm weather the whole month before you arrived... what was the snow like? The crevices? I'm guessing that the snow was a lot softer than normal, so that may have contributed to the reason you didn't make it?

I'm definately interested in joining you if you try it again next year! :)
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Postby doug395 » Mon Sep 11, 2006 12:16 pm

Kathy, that really is a beautiful view of Rainier, I’m planning to go next year.
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Postby ridgeline » Thu Sep 14, 2006 5:17 am

Kathy, Rainier is one beautiful mountain! Its one you will summit and never forget. I think you said before you were going with RMI, so Im sure you had a good day of Ice Axe and crampon training. I still fall back on that day of training when Im in the Sierra, we had an awesome guide that really pushed everyone on trainiing day. Question; was the Paridise Hotel being renovated? Did you camp at all in Rainier National Park? Lots of cool hikes around there.
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Postby wingding » Thu Sep 14, 2006 10:46 am

Rosabella - It had been warm up there, but on our summit day it was cold and the snow was hard, so the soft snow wasn't the problem on that day. I just didn't train correctly. I'm working on revising my training.

Doug - It is so beautiful up there - you're going to love it. Especially if you get up there in prime wildflower season. The season is slightly later at Sunrise than Paradise, so you have two shots at the best time for the flowers.

Ridgeline - It is beautiful up there. I'm going to give it a try again next year. If I can't find anyone to go with I'll sign up with RMI again.

The RMI class was my second snow skills class. The RMI class was geared toward what you need to know to get up the mountain with them and was pretty good. For our class and on our climb, the senior guide was Brent Okita, who has a pretty impressive resume and was extremely nice. Even without making the summit I learned a lot on the trip with RMI - that was my first attempt at roped travel and keeping a pace set by someone else. That was my downfall - I need to work on a more consistent steady pace with steady breathing for the next trip.

The previous snow trvel skills class I took with Sierra Mountain Center was a really good class and more geared to traveling without a guide and more geared toward dealing with snow in the Sierra than the Cascades. It was a one day class and we were out there 12 hours covering ice axe skill, cramponing, belaying, and self-arrest. It was well worth the $120 it cost.

Paradise Lodge was still under construction. We stayed in the Whitaker Bunkhouse the first two nights. After the Rainier attempt I stayed two nights in the National Parks Inn, which was nice but still a drive from the Parasise area. The Paradise Lodge won't be open until 2008.

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