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Monday, July 2, 2012

Mt. Ranier Basecamp

This year we have had a string of badluck when it comes to weather.  We had many planned trips over the course of spring or summer that had to change course due to weather.  But as always, you can't rely on the weather til July 5th around these neck of the woods.  But that hasn't always deterred our group. On july 1st a group of us were all set for a conditioner on Mt. Adams when the stormy clouds descended on Seattle.  Not wanting to drive the 5 hours to get rained out, this years group decided to get our first taste of the Mt. Rainier itself.  We arrived to Paradise to socked in weather that appeared to blanket the whole mountian. 

It appeared that it might not clear up, but after ascending into the abyss for several hours we broke out and got our first glimpse of the mountain itself.

As we ascended higher we were treated to amazing views and could see the tops off all the surrounding volcanoes.  Standing above the clouds that engulph the northwest is an experience in itself, and doing it while staring at the intimidating nisqually ice cliffs makes the whole experience surreal.

The whole group made it to Camp Muir, standing over 10'000 tall, which is the basecamp for many routes on the south side of the mountain.  In mid august we will be taking the emmons route up from the White river and seeing completely new terrain.

To get to muir you need to travel around 10 miles roundtrip and ascend almost 5000'.  This was certainly an eye opener for us all as next time we will be traveling with full overnight gear and need to conserve energy for the summit attempt.

About half of us opted to bring our skis up to enjoy some July skiing!

The weather seems to have turned and we have reschedule our Mt. Adams climb and also plan to climb Mt. Baker before the big ascent.

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