Mt. Rainier

Mount Rainier is the most challenging glaciated mountain in the continental United States, rising 4,392 m/14,410 ft. near Seattle and close to the Pacific Ocean. Rainier offers a great wilderness and mountaineering experience. The combination of high altitude, variety of climbing routes and unpredictable Northwest weather make climbing Mt. Rainier a true mountaineering experience. Contact us and find out more.

A little bit more about the trek

Over the years, Mount Rainier has been the training ground of climbers looking to climb Denali, Alpamayo and even the Himalayan greats like Mt. Everest. Mount Rainier is a challenge in it’s own right and shoule be approached with respect and with the right preparation. We can offer you a variety of program choices for all climbing abilities. We have classic routes, expedition training weeks and specific mountaineering skills training climbs on Mount Rainier.

On the classic route climbing on the Southwest flank of Mt. Rainier, we will pass camp Muir. This camp is situated at 3,072 m/10,080 ft. Camp Muir is the most used base camp for those attempting to climb to the summit of Rainier. Camp Muir is between the Nisqually and Paradise Glaciers. Most other accents head to the summit via the Emmons Glacier on the Northeast side of Rainier.

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It is important to remember that 50% of summit attempts do not happen due to the weather and is the most common reason for unsuccessful ascents.  Does this information excite you to take the next step towards achieving your goals in the mountains?  If so, get in touch today.  We pride ourselves on making sure that our clients have every opportunity to succeed on the mountains, including professional training advice, gear lists and video links on how to pack your bag, and much more.  We are always available to answer any questions you may have by email, phone or skype, so contact us today!

What people said

“Rainier is a great climb, challenging and rewarding. Climbing Rainier was a true mountaineering experience. The guides were great, constantly preparing us for each stage of the climb. I was very happy with the whole experience.”
Martina Williams, 2013.

“I was well prepared by Ian, I knew what to expect and got excellent train advice. I enjoyed the climb and learned a lot. Ian’s attention to my preparation was excellent and vital in getting me to the top.”
Francis Shaw, 2013.

“I climbed Kilimanjaro with Ian and was really impressed with Ian’s set up. I decided to make Denali my goal and signed up to climb Rainier in preparation for my Denali climb. Again the set up and guides were class. I learned so much climbing Rainier and how what I need to do in preparation for Denali, roll on Denali 2016.”
Bill Reyonlds, 2013.

Itinerary


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Day 1

Meet 1pm for the pre-climb instructional meeting. This meeting of approximately 4 hours is instrumental in getting you outfitted, informed, packed and educated prior to departure the following morning. Topics to be covered include an introduction of the entire team, an introduction to Mt. Rainier National Park, its mission and ecology; a safety briefing; personal gear checks and issue of group gear; instruction in the proper use of safety equipment including helmets, harnesses and avalanche beacons; introduction to knots, ropes, rope travel and a review of additional critical climbing skills. You are on your own for lodging this night, but  we can offer a convenient and economical option with our onsite tent camping.

Day 2

Meet at 8:00am for an early departure to Paradise (5420 ft.) at the end of the road in Mount Rainier National Park. We ascend to Camp Muir at 10,080 ft. through picturesque alpine meadows and snowfields. Plan on a long day; hiking and climbing for roughly 5-6 hours and gaining 4,600 ft. over 4½ miles to Camp Muir. Along the way, the guides/instructors will introduce efficient climbing techniques including pace, rest stepping, breathing, rest break procedures, clothing layering systems, food and water intake requirements and other essential climbing skills. We will spend the night in the guide hut at Camp Muir overlooking the Nisqually and Cowlitz glaciers and the rugged Tatoosh range to the South.

Day 3

This day is less physically demanding and helpful for recovery and acclimatization. After a casual breakfast we head out to do some glacier travel and skills training on the Cowlitz Glacier adjacent to Camp Muir. The team gathers all gear from Camp Muir and ropes up for the first glacier crossing to put our newly learned skills to practice. A short trek across the Cowlitz Glacier leads to steeper travel up a scree trail through Cathedral Gap. We’ll step onto the Ingraham Glacier and climb a short bit further to a broad, flat section of the glacier. A pre-established camp at “The Flats” is waiting for us after our 1½ hour hike. This camp at 11,000 ft offers a stunning view of the precipitous north face of Little Tahoma, the third tallest peak in Washington, and the spectacular Ingraham and Emmons Glaciers. A summit team informational meeting with the guides will take place in the afternoon followed by an early dinner and a short night’s sleep.

Day 4

You are up early, around midnight with a hot drink and instant breakfast. After all teams are roped up we’ll make our way up the Ingraham Headwall (early season only, and all snow) or onto the Disappointment Cleaver (always by mid-season, and mostly rock) eventually gaining the upper snow slopes of the mountain. Throughout the day, the guides will be directing their rope teams, providing continuous instruction, safety feedback and hands on training in safe glacier travel. We’ll ascend glacier terrain to the very top, finally ending at the summit crater. We spend an hour or more on top (weather permitting) and walk over to the true summit, Columbia Crest, 14, 410′. In descent, we navigate the glaciers back down to the Flats utilizing all of the skills we have learned. After a short rest at the Flats, we’ll travel as teams an hour lower down the mountain to Camp Muir for another stop. From there we’ll continue on down to Paradise where our van will be waiting to shuttle us back to Seattle. Our 3 day climb and 12-14 hour summit-day culminates with a group debrief and awarding of certificates of achievement by the guides.

Ready to go?

We pride ourselves on making sure that our clients have every opportunity to succeed on the mountains, including professional training advice, gear lists and video links on how to pack your bag, and much more. We are always available to answer any questions you may have by email, phone or skype, so contact us today!