Mt. Rainier – Trip Report (Jeff Hood)
Friday, July 11, 2008
Flew to Seattle. I was met at the airport by Sherlock Hirning (Sarah?s cousin) and Jesse Hofheimer. We spent the night with a friend of Sherlock?s in Tacoma.
Saturday, July 12, 2008.
In the morning, we shopped for food and any gear that we did not already have or thought we might need. The food we purchased consisted of things like trail mix, candy bars, energy bars, peanut butter crackers, Goo and almonds.
We drove from Tacoma to Ashland, WA and arrived around 1:00 p.m. We were met by Patrick Hehn, another of Sherlock?s friends, who would climb with us. We ate lunch, checked in at the Whitaker Bunkhouse where we would spend the night and then met up with our team at the International Mountain Guide Headquarters.
At IMG, we met the other three people who would climb with us. There were a total of seven people in our climbing party. For our check-in meeting, we had to bring all our gear. The guides went through our gear to determine what was acceptable and what wasn?t. I had to rent several items including boots, crampons, a 4000 cubic inch backpack, heavy down jacket, waterproof ski pants and a helmet. Sherlock, being the veteran outdoorsman that he is, provided me a sleeping bag with comfort down to zero degrees, an ice axe, headlight, two pair of waterproof gloves and mountain goggles.
I had purchased, or procured on my own, wool socks, a wool hat, a baseball hat, sunglasses, sunscreen, two 32oz Nalgene? bottles, a heavy, waterproof windbreaker, three Under-Armour? t-shirts, one long sleeve Under-Armour? shirt, one pair of Under-Armour? long underwear and one pair of soft-shell fleece pants. No cotton clothing is allowed because it gets soaked easily and doesn?t dry out quickly.
Each of the items listed above was required and had to fit in the pack. They had told us our packs would weigh approximately 40 pounds when full. Mine weighed 38.
After completing the gear check, we spent about two hours on rope training, knot tying and pressure breathing.
At the end of the training session we went to the Copper Inn for dinner and then retired to the Whitaker Bunkhouse to pack our packs and get some sleep. As it turns out, it was the last real sleep we would have for two days.
Sunday, July 13, 2008
We met at the IMG headquarters at 8:00 a.m. for a final gear check. We loaded our packs on to the trailer and, along with three of our four guides, climbed into the van that transported us to Paradise. We arrived at Paradise at approximately 9:00 a.m.