Climbing Mt. Rainier in July 2012 was not “just another climb” for me. It was an opportunity to share an environment I love with climbers I admire and respect.
In my normal manner for all my climbs I have added a few pages to my site to document the expedition:
This climb was all about honoring a fallen climber, Mike Price, who died after a fall into a crevasse. It was to support his partner, Jim Davidson, who also fell into the same crevasse but managed to climb out against every imaginable obstacle.
Our climb went about as well as a climb can. We had near perfect weather, a team that could predict one another’s moves and a route that was both accommodating while giving us a bit of a challenge. This is an except from the trip report:
As I flew back to Denver from Seattle, I looked out the window and was rewarded with another perfect view of Rainier and the face we had climbed. My eyes traced each step, the three distinct glaciers and the camps we had used. Without thought, my mind went back to the darkness of the night watching the rope snake slowly at my feet and my ice axe steady my gate as I pushed higher.
click to enlarge
I thought of my friends – new and old – and the experience. While I thought of the summit, it was a fleeting thought as the large scale of what we had accomplished occupied my mind. No, Rainier is not K2 or Everest. No, we had not climbed on harsh winter conditions or even taken the most difficult route.
But that is why mountaineering is so special. Often it is not the magazine metrics that define a great climb. It is the company, the reason, the experience. And for that I am grateful.
As the sight of Mt. Rainier dimmed with the fading sun from my airplane window seat, a smile crept across my face. Yes, it was done.
I use the tag line “Memories are Everything” for all my climbs to bring awareness to Alzheimer’s. This climb meant that and much more. You can read the trip report and see more pictures and videos at Rainier 2012 Trip Report
Memories are Everything