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Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Mailbox 5.17.11

At the trailhead this morning we were greeted by the always daunting sign reminding us of the strenuous nature of our objective; Mailbox Peak. The mountain revered as one of the most strenuous hikes on the I-90 Corridor, became our morning conditioner as we looked to increase our conditioning. The trail takes off like a set of stairs built by roots and rocks that goes on for 2 miles and 3000' then gains another 1000' in a half mile on open snow slopes leading to the summit. Today was one of those days without a cloud in the sky and one could see hundreds of miles away. On the summit we took our time to enjoy the views and admire the Emmons route on Mt. Rainier, which we will be attempting in shortly over a month. We then hurried down the trail so we could make it back into the city by 1 o'clock and get showered and into school for our 1:30 classes.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Training Day on Mt Si

As the quarter winds down, we no longer have class on Tuesday morning. This week that means getting up early, and climbing Mt Si for some training. Mike, Anders, Jackie, Colin, and I ascended the 4 mile, 3150 vertical feet with weighted packs. Snow on the trail the last 3/4 mile, but that barely slowed us down. We barely missed the sun peeking through the clouds, it came out just as we were finishing, but were happy with the nice weather we had. Now that the quarter is winding down a bit, we're looking forward to hitting the trails pretty often, as we get ready for the big weekend in July.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Overnight Camping @ Steven's Pass

On April 30th, nine brave Fosterites set off for Steven's Pass to brave knee deep snow and minimal internet access to learn crevasse rescue and snow camping skills. The day started with a knot tying course, where the age old riddle of "how many MBA students does it take to tie a knot" was put to the test. We soon found out that the answer to that question is nine.

After learning how to tie essential climbing knots such as the overhand, double fisherman (insert joke here), butterfly, among others, we jumped right into crevasse rescue. Jesse Bommarito quickly volunteered to jump off the side of a short cliff to put the whole gang to work on safely pulling all 110 lbs of him to safety. Relying on Jan and Jackie Logan's strength and determination, Jesse was fetched from the white abyss in 30 minutes time.

Finally, we snowshoed/skinned up Yodelin ridge for 45 minutes and set up camp. Scott and Jan teamed up to build a honeymoon snow cave while Jesse built a solo cave with a no girls sign attached to the front. These impressive feats of engineering took over 3 hours to build, and their labor was rewarded with snowball margaritas and quesadillas. The overnighter was a great success and gave the team its first taste of what it will be like on Rainier come July 4th.