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Rainier Info pa pa pa please

14ers in California and Washington state or any other peak in the USA
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Re: Rainer Info pa pa pa please

Postby SurfNTurf » Tue Jan 29, 2013 2:07 pm

My clothing system for last summer was similar to climbing_rob's. We summited July 6 in moderate wind and cold temps.

BOTTOM: sock liners, expedition-weight socks, midweight baselayer pants, uninsulated softshell pants, bomber hardshell pants. I hiked up in just the softshells, adding the baselayer and hardshells for summit day.

TOP: synthetic T-shirt, expedition-weight baselayer pullover 1/4-zip with balaclava, Nanopuff pullover, basic rain shell, synthetic hooded puffy. Hiked up in just the T-shirt, wore everything except the puffy on summit day. The hard shell could have been upgraded (Patagonia Torrentshell), but it worked fine.

HANDS: liner wind gloves, springweight gloves, heavy mittens

HEAD: built-in balaclava on baselayer, glacier glasses, goggles, beanie

BOOTS: La Sportiva Glaciers. I wish I'd had something with insulation. The Glaciers would have been fine solo-hiking at full speed, but roped travel is slow and the DC is crowded. My toes were cold for a while between the Cleaver and the summit.
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Re: Rainer Info pa pa pa please

Postby seth0687 » Wed Jan 30, 2013 8:30 am

Great advice guys, and thanks for writing out your layering systems. I'll keep you all posted on the trip as things roll on. Fingers crossed for a successful TR in a few months. I was content with Emmons, but now it looks like my buddy wants to talk Liberty ridge so who knows.

Cheers,

Seth

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Re: Rainer Info pa pa pa please

Postby hotoven » Thu Feb 28, 2013 8:32 pm

Looks like you have tons of advice to go through, if you get tired of the thinking aspect, here are a few photos from my 2009 trip on the mountain. Did the Emmons unguided. High recommended!

http://www.summitpost.org/mt-rainier-trip/577844

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Re: Rainer Info pa pa pa please

Postby seth0687 » Fri Mar 01, 2013 1:40 am

Thanks Hotoven,

Pictures are awesome!

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Re: Rainer Info pa pa pa please

Postby HuskyRunner » Fri Mar 01, 2013 10:35 am

seth0687 wrote: I was content with Emmons, but now it looks like my buddy wants to talk Liberty ridge so who knows.

Cheers,

Seth


Keep in mind that it is not easy to retreat from Liberty Ridge and you typically carry all your gear to the summit and descend another route (Emmons/Winthrop). If you're set on a grade 3 route take a look at Kautz Glacier/ice fall.

Seems a little odd that you're looking to do a pretty challenging route after asking for some basic info on Rainier. Just me, but I wouldn't choose Liberty as my first route up Rainier, particularly unguided, it's a big hill with a lot of objective hazards without throwing in unfamiliarity with the mountain. Good on ya if you're up for it and have a blast, it's a fun hill.

http://www.mountainproject.com/v/kautz-glacier/105906991
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Re: Rainer Info pa pa pa please

Postby pvnisher » Sat Mar 02, 2013 3:18 am

Agreed. Take a look at some of the liberty ridge trip reports either here or summitpost. It's not entry level. And furthermore, even rainier dc isn't exactly entry level hiking.
Liberty ridge is a serious mountaineering objective.

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Re: Rainer Info pa pa pa please

Postby seth0687 » Sat Mar 02, 2013 4:00 am

Thanks for the concern, but I'm not worried about the technical aspects of Liberty Ridge. This post is a little stale as the original team I was on for Liberty has dissolved. Two guys from that original team had been up Liberty Ridge before hence my lack of concern on being familiar with the mountain by ascending other routes first. I was merely tossing out a net to grab some info from persons other than them. No such thing as too much information. With that being said, that team is no more and I will be doing Emmons or Kautz with a couple other guys.

Again thanks for the concern, but it's all good.

Seth

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Re: Rainier Info pa pa pa please

Postby shearmodulus » Tue Mar 05, 2013 1:44 pm

Observations on Rainier (my own, plus stuff from the guides that were leading the course):

Expect it to be wet. July and August are the dryer months of the year, but the amount of moisture there is drastically different than Colorado. I know, "no DUH," you are saying, but I expected this to be the case and still was surprised by how much wetter it can be. I would imagine glacier melt is a bigger issue in the summer, but the snowpack there is just way, way wetter per inch than CO. This means a good waterproof layer is a must. My goretex jacket wetted out and I had a hell of a time drying it out overnight. A good tent footprint is probably a good idea to keep it from soaking through your bottom.

We got 7 feet of snow from 22 Feb to 3 March. Plus about 2 inches of rain. Yes. 7 FEET. And they are getting another 2 feet today and tomorrow.

Glacier glasses. The gear guys, the guides all agree - retinal sunburns suck. Glacier glasses are a must even on cloudy days. Goggles are ok too, but if it is hot/humid they will fog up.

Solid foam sleeping mat plus inflatable one if you are sleeping on snow. This technique may be old hat to some, but I've tried to get away with only one in the winter and it sucks. Royally.

Wag bags - learn to use them, and be very deliberate about hiding them from the birds. The ravens will climb under your rainfly if there is a gap and pull your trash out looking for food, and they LOVE wag bags. Gross, but they also eat carrion.

Disclaimer - this is what I wore for February, so may not be applicable, but here it is nonetheless:

Boots - Spantiks
Socks - expedition weight REI wool, plus smartwool liner socks
Pants - Eddie Bauer First Ascent Guide Softshells
REI eVent shell pants (full zip - very important)
Patagonia R2 mid-weight synthetic base top (half-zip)
Mountain Hardwear Softshell (not insulated/lined)
Gloves - BD liner, Outdoor Research softshell with reinforced palms, and OR goretex mitten shell (when snowing/windy)

Jacket - Mountain Hardwear goretex (it's the one I'm wearing in my profile pic) I don't recommend this jacket for wet conditions, the outer layer does not shed water well and quickly wetted out). Immediately following, I bought the Arc'Teryx Manta Shell. It has a softshell-like exterior that will shed water better.
Hat - Sherpa Wool hat (pretty much wore this 24-7)
Last edited by shearmodulus on Tue Mar 05, 2013 3:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"Roads? Where we're going, we don't need roads...."

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Re: Rainier Info pa pa pa please

Postby shearmodulus » Tue Mar 05, 2013 1:52 pm

Other Misc gear used:

- Gregory Denali Pro Backpack
- BD Sabretooth Crampons
- BD Raven Pro Ice Axe w/leash (clip the leash to a carabiner on your harness, not around your hand)
- BD Alpine BOD harness
- MSR Evo Ascent snowshoes (probably not necessary for summer conditions)
- 2 x MSR 36 inch T-shaped snow pickets with webbing/carabiner for snow anchors
- Metal blade BD snow shovel (but watch the little button thingies in the handles - they get dislodged if you're not careful)
- G3 240cm snow probe
- BD Jumar/Fixed line ascender
- ATC belay device
- 40-ft of 6mm accessory cord for rigging prussiks (foot, waist, 2 x rescue)
- 4 locking D rings, 4 ovals for rigging 3:1 and 6:1 pulley systems for crevasse rescue.
- 60m rope for rigging glacier rope teams (max of 4 per rope with rescue coils at either end of the rope coiled and ready, aproximately 30-ft spacing between climbers)

I'll post pictures tonight when I get off of work.
"Roads? Where we're going, we don't need roads...."

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Re: Rainier Info pa pa pa please

Postby nyker » Tue Mar 05, 2013 10:48 pm

I've only climbed Rainier once, but below are some thoughts. Awesome trip though.

Per your order of questions:

1 -Cardio. For me, there is not much chance to get up high living at sea level, so base building and
constant training but being careful not to overtrain was the most important. 5x/week+ an active rest day and one
full rest day or more if working a lot of hours. Get out and get up some 14ers in the months and weeks before your trip.
And like others mentioned, climb with the packweight you will use on Rainier.

2 - Rainier Climbing Guide:
http://www.amazon.com/Mount-Rainier-Climbing-Guide-2nd/dp/0898869560

3 - liner gloves that fit in my pocket, Patagonia Hoody with chest pocket and stretch hood, good smartwool socks, Gel packs.

4 - Rent a car. give your self a couple days to acclimatize. Also, there is a good Nepalese restaurant down the road from the entrance of the park. Great food, Eat there!

5 - I didn't feel I had much additional gear than a backpacking overnight 14er trip in Colorado in Fall/Spring, pretty much the same gear; I checked a bag as usual (with axe, crampons, boots, etc)
and carried a normal sized pack as carry on.

6 Speed is safety on that mountain. acclimatize, and know those few spots where rockfall is a real risk and move through
those sections as quickly as safely possible. Spend a day or two exploring the rest of the national park - its a beautiful area.
If you can stay in the park at Paradise the day before and after your climb it will be easier on your body with less driving up and down the road. Also, prepare for wind on that mountain, especially
the upper reaches. For lower body - I had a poly baselayer, quickdry hiking pants and hardshell goretex pants - but my neck and head gets colder quicker than my lower body so I was able to
hike in only two of those layers at any one time in temps in the 20s with 20-40mph winds, which made it feel MUCH colder. My hands were very cold, but legs were fine. I did carry the third
when not wearing it though.

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Re: Rainier Info pa pa pa please

Postby zdero1 » Tue Mar 05, 2013 11:30 pm

seth0687 wrote:Hey guys,

Jus spent the last 6 or so hours reading through any and all threads that had the key word "Rainier" and just had a couple questions if you have time.

1. Anyone have a training regiment that worked for them? Specific climbs in Colorado you used to train before your attempt?
2. Any particular books that are good reads on the area/mountain?
3. What gear did you find particularly helpful, necessary, comforting, preferred etc..(brands, models, etc.)
4. Travel recommendations prior to and after the climb (i.e. hotel preference, cab or bus vs. rental car)
5. How was flying with a retarded amount of gear lol?
6. Any tips, tricks, hints, or things you learned on your climb that are of note?


Cheers,

Seth


1. I did A LOT of stair climbing (my only way to gain elevation given the surrounding Wisconsin terrain. Nothing can really prepare you for the altitude. I really started to feel it at 9k. I usually trained with a 30lb pack, with pack weight range = 20-70lbs. I ended up hurting myself training with the 70lb pack so don't make the same mistake of overdoing it. Just kill it at the gym or in the hills, as much as possible.
2. The challenge of Rainier by Molenaar and the Measure of a Mountain by Barcott are great reads about the mountain. I used climbing-specific manuals to figure out what I could expect during the actual climb but was happy I read these books prior to climbing. They gave me a better appreciation for the mountain.
3. Go to rmiguides.com, look at the equipment list to get an idea of what you'll need. If you're going unguided you'll obviously need other things like a 4 season tent, stove, etc.
4. Drove straight from SeaTac to Whittaker's Bunkhouse in Ashford, WA. A great place to stay if you want to be frugal.
5. I hate the use of the word "retarded."
6. Opening wrappers will be quite challenging, especially on summit day (or as Kush calls it, that 18 hour period when you start at Paradise, summit, and end up back at Paradise). If you are eating something like a cliff bar, cut off the end of the wrapper, then use some masking tape (or whatever tape you prefer) down the center to semi-seal the package. By doing this, you don't have to take off gloves to tear open the package. Appreciate every moment you have there. It's an unforgettable experience.

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Re: Rainier Info pa pa pa please

Postby nyker » Wed Mar 06, 2013 8:31 am

I had picked up this book in the airport on my flight out to Seattle last year....not the best book to read before a climb of Rainier, but put things in perspective nonetheless...

http://www.amazon.com/The-Ledge-Inspirational-Friendship-Survival/dp/0345523202

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