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Dear Fellow Climber,


New records were set when RMI Guides Dave Hahn and Melissa Arnot stepped foot onto the summit of Mt. Everest on May 26th. The climb marked Dave’s 14th summit of Mt. Everest, the most of any non-Sherpa. It was Melissa’s 4th to the top, giving her the most summits of Mt. Everest of any American woman. Congratulations to the team! Read Dave’s account of their summit day on the RMI Blog.


On this side of the globe, Mt. Rainier climbs have been ongoing for the past month, with climbers encountering the wide variety of spring conditions this mountain is so well known for. Mt. Rainier promises to deliver another good and challenging season. In Alaska, RMI’s Mt. McKinley Expeditions are underway with our first two teams making the summit and other RMI Teams preparing for their summit pushes.

RMI has a few new features on our website to help you be a part of our climbing adventures; you can sign up for a daily report delivered right to your Inbox of all of the Expedition Dispatches from the RMI Blog! The new RMI Summit Registry keeps track of RMI’s successful climbers on mountains all over the world. But don’t stay online for too long, it’s time to get out and climb! With classic climbs in the U.S. to expeditions around the world, we have the best adventures to get you out and in the mountains!

Sincerely,

Peter Whittaker

Peter Whittaker, RMI Expeditions.

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Mexico's Volcanoes - Oct. 2012

Ready for the next-step after Mt. Rainier? RMI’s Mexico’s Volcanoes Climb scales two of North America’s highest peaks. High altitude, wonderful culture, and good climbing all in a short 9-Day trip.
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Aconcagua - Winter 2012/2013

Travel to Argentina to climb Aconcagua, South America’s highest peak! RMI’s expeditions are crafted to give climbers the best chances of success and our expeditions are filling quickly.
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Vinson Massif - Dec. 2012

Join RMI Guide Dave Hahn to climb Antarctica’s highest point, the Vinson Massif. With more summits of Vinson than anyone else on earth, Dave is the premier Vinson guide.
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2013 Dates Posted

Pull out your calendars and start planning: dates for our 2013 McKinley Expeditions, Ice Climbing Programs, and Expedition Skills Seminars - Winter are now posted!
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Guide Shack: Training Tips

Summer climbing season is here and it’s time to tailor your training to get you prepared for the big climb. Author and training coach John Colver offers advice to RMI climbers on how to get ready.
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Dear Fellow Climber,


Spring has arrived! Here at the base of Mount Rainier that means one thing: it’s time to pull out that climbing gear, sharpen those crampons, and get ready for summer climbing! Personally, I am looking forward to adding to my successful summit ascents of Mt. Rainier.  My good friend Ed Viesturs will join me for two climbs this summer, a tradition we have held for the last nine years, and I have several other trips planned with friends and family.  Does climbing Rainier after a couple hundred ascents get any easier? No, not really.  Which is why I up my training program this time of year.  It is great to have a reason to get fit.


Rainier Mountaineering’s climbs are underway with Dave Hahn and Melissa Arnot currently on Mt. Everest (follow their climb on the RMI Blog) and our expeditions in Alaska start off May 1st, followed shortly by our Mt. Rainier climbs. RMI Guides will lead programs in EcuadorRussia, Tanzania, and Indonesia during the summer months.  Also, be sure to check out our new Summit Registry which chronicles the successful summits on our climbs and keep an eye on it as our summer climbs get underway.

Have you planned your mountain adventure yet for this summer?  It is that time of year, so get outside and have fun in the hills … on your own or with us.

We hope to see you in the mountains soon. Come climb with us!

Peter Whittaker

Peter Whittaker, RMI Expeditions.

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Everest Base Camp Trek - Oct. 2012

Trek in the Himalayas to the foot of Mt. Everest this fall! RMI’s Trek stays in the best teahouses of the Khumbu Valley in a complete lodge-to-lodge sojourn through the world’s greatest peaks. Read the daily reports and see photos from this spring’s Base Camp Trek on the RMI Blog.
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Kilimanjaro Climb & Safari - Sept. 2012 / Feb. 2013

RMI’s February Kilimanjaro climb boasted 100% summit success for the group, keeping RMI’s outstanding 93% overall summit success rate on Kilimanjaro. This is due to our carefully planned itinerary, program logistics, and the excellent leadership of our guides. Read the daily reports from our February climb on the RMI Blog.
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Aconcagua - Winter 2012 / 2013

With 100% Expedition Success on Aconcagua this past year, we are looking forward to returning to Argentina’s 22,841’ Aconcagua this winter and our expeditions are filling quickly. The combination of Argentine culture and the high altitude expedition mountaineering make this a great Seven Summits climbing adventure.
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Upcoming Carstensz Pyramid Expedition

RMI’s June Carstensz Pyramid Expedition is approaching and our climbers are preparing for their adventure in Papua, Indonesia! Learn more about this secluded mountain, the least known of the Seven Summits, on RMI Guide Alex Van Steen’s Climb Carstensz Blog.
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Nawang Gombu Sherpa Tribute - June 3, 2012

Join RMI and the Whittaker Family for a tribute to Nawang Gombu Sherpa at Mt. Rainier’s Paradise Inn. Gombu was the first person to summit Mt. Everest twice, a long time RMI Guide, and a prominent member of the Sherpa Community. Find out more about the event here; read more about Gombu here.
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Guide Shack: JJ Justman

RMI Guide JJ Justman began guiding for RMI in 1998 and his climbing and guiding career includes a long list of notable peaks from all corners of the world. We caught up with JJ to hear about his guiding career and his latest pursuits. Click above to read the interview. 
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Dear Fellow Climber,

It’s hard to believe that it is the middle of February. Spring is on its way! So far RMI teams have made the most of 2012, with successful expeditions in Argentina and Ecuador and teams currently on Kilimanjaro and Mexico’s Volcanoes. Be sure to read up on all the climbing on the RMI Blog.  

What are your plans in 2012? With trips around the world, RMI has carefully selected the best possible adventures to get you into the mountains this year. From alpine climbs close to home to expeditions on the world's greatest peaks, we can outfit the best climbs for you.

Come climb with us and pursue your adventures!

Peter Whittaker
Peter Whittaker, RMI Expeditions

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Mt. McKinley - May 2012

With more vertical relief from the base to the summit than Mt. Everest and so secluded we use ski planes to reach it, climbing Mt. McKinley is a distinct mountaineering experience. Only a few spots remain on our teams this year! 

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Ecuador - June 2012

With soaring glaciated peaks, accessible approaches, and a vibrant countryside, Ecuador has it all. Our Ecuador's Volcanoes and Cotopaxi Express programs are perfect for intermediate climbers aiming for higher altitudes this summer! 

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Mt. Elbrus - July 2012

Rising above the surrounding Caucasus Mountains, Russia's Mt. Elbrus is the highest point in Europe and one of the world's Seven Summits. Tour the culture and scenery and climb the mountain's well-known Southside Route

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Vinson Massif - December 2012

Venture to the midst of the Antarctic Ice Sheet to scale the Vinson Massif, the highest point in Antarctica. Join an expedition - unlike any other - led by RMI Guide Dave Hahn, the world's most experienced and sought after Vinson guide. 

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North Cascades - July/August 2012

Just a few hours from Seattle, with gorgeous granite ridges and rolling glaciers lie the North Cascades, home to some of the best alpine climbing around. RMI offers an array of North Cascades programs for climbers of all abilities ready to experience the best of what alpine climbing has to offer! 

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Mountaineering Training

Midwinter marks the ideal time to revisit your training plans as you prepare for your summer climbs. It takes a lot of work to get yourself into the best shape of your life, take advantage of the training resources we've prepared to get you ready for the mountains! 

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Guide Shack: Gilbert Chase

RMI Guide Gilbert Chase has been guiding for RMI since 2010. An accomplished and versatile climber, Gilbert is busy this winter travelling the world on climbing and ski pursuits. We caught up with Gilbert after her recent Aconcagua Expedition to hear about the climb. 

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New Years Steal
RMI Newsletter, December 2011

The winter season is off to an exciting start at RMI: A team of RMI Guides summitted Tibet's Shishapangma in November, two RMI teams summitted Vinson Massif, the highest point in Antarctica while are Ecuador's Volcanoes team found great climbing on Cotopaxi and Cayambe. Currently we have teams on Ecuador's Cotopaxi and Argentina's Aconcagua - the highest mountain in South America. Check in on the climbs' progress on the RMI Blog.

With New Year's just around the corner now is the time to start planning your climbing adventures: from climbs in the equatorial rainforests to the glaciers of Alaska to ski and ice climbing closer to home, RMI has the trips to get you out and into the mountains. Come climb with us!

Peter Whittaker

Peter Whittaker, Rainier Mountaineering, Inc.

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Carstensz Pyramid - June 2012

Journey from the beaches of Bali through the Papuan jungle to the highest point on the Oceanic Continent, Carstensz Pyramid, next summer. We are pleased to offer this exciting new program and are proud to be the only American guide service to work with a local Papuan partner for logistical support during the expedition.

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Expedition Skills Seminar - Muir - Summer 2012

Spend a week on Mt. Rainier's glaciers on of our Expedition Skills Seminar - Muir, our classic mountaineering skills seminar for over 40 years. Basing out of the climbing huts at Camp Muir, spend the week learning skills and techniques of mountaineering in preparation for a summit attempt of Mt. Rainier.

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Alaska Mountaineering Seminar - May 2012

Venture into the heart of the Alaska Range for our Alaska Mountaineering Seminar this spring. Based out of McKinley's Base Camp, participants learn the skills and techniques of expedition climbing, experience and challenge of the Alaska's mountains, and gain the ideal preparation for a future Denali ascent.

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Ski Programs - March & April 2012

See what backcountry skiing and ski mountaineering is all about on one of our Ski Programs this spring. Learn the basic skills and techniques of backcountry skiing in our Intro to Ski Touring or bring your skiing to the big mountains in our Into to Ski Mountaineering.

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Ice Climbing Programs - Jan/Feb 2012

Take on the challenge of climbing frozen waterfalls on one of our Ice Climbing Programs in Ouray, CO this winter where you will learn the skills to gain confidence on steep, icy terrain. Structured around instruction and fun, our low client-to-guide ratios on these courses make certain that you receive the most personalized instruction possible as well as the ability to tailor the day's activities to your desires.

Photo Contest

Photo Contest

Congratulations to John Doe of ANYTOWN, USA for winning our Annual Photo Contest Grand Prize. John's photo received the most number of votes from all of you and he wins an additional $500 credit towards the program of his choice, making his total winnings for the Photo Contest $750. Thanks to everyone for submitting their photos and participating in the voting.

Guide Shack

Guide Shack: Elias de Andres Martos

RMI Guide Elias de Andres Martos, a native of Spain, has been guiding for RMI since 2009. In addition to his guiding Elías organized a team of RMI Guides to climb Tibet's Shishapangma, the 14th highest mountain in the world. The team summitted on October 11th & 12th. We caught up with Elias after he returned to the States to chat about the expedition.

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RMI Expeditions
RMI Newsletter
October 2011
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Greetings fellow climbers!

Climbers Descending the Emmons Glacier this summer.

Leaves turning yellow in the Ashford Valley, a fresh layer of snow at Paradise, wild weather up high on Mt. Rainier, first dropping several feet of new snow and then nuclear winds scouring the glaciers to leave rock-hard, icy conditions: it's official, fall is here and the summer Mt. Rainier climbing season is over!

With more than 240 climbs of the mountain and 1,640 successful summits, it has been an incredible climbing season here on Mt. Rainier. In addition, we've had teams in Alaska, Ecuador, and Tanzania. Thanks to everyone who came out to climb with us this summer - sharing the excitement and adventure in the mountains drives our passion for the profession! The 2011 Rainier Mountain Festival on September 10th and 11th was a fun time to see familiar faces, catch up with old friends, and share beers with novice climbers and mountaineering legends alike. And the weather fully cooperated with sun and temperatures in the mid 80's!

In other exciting RMI news, a team of RMI Guides have been in Tibet since early September climbing 26,289' Shishapangma, the fourteenth highest mountain in the world. They made their summit bid last week, congratulations to Elias, Geoff, Jake, Eric, Leon and Bridget on their impressive climb! If you haven't been following, you can catch up on the updates from their climb and read about their summit on the RMI Blog.

With autumn settling in, we are gearing up for another busy and exciting winter of mountain adventures - from international expeditions around the world to skiing and ice climbing closer to home. Take a look through our programs and see what adventures spark your interest! The 2012 Mt. Rainier program dates are posted as well: call us soon to sign up for a climb before the dates fill up. My next adventure will be climbing in Ecuador mid-February. And you know what? Having a lofty goal to up my training routine is awesome. Those extra repetitions in the gym and few extra pounds in my pack on training hikes are money in the bank when I go for the summit in February. What will be your next mountain to climb? Treat yourself to an adventure and a reason to get in the best shape of your life! Come climb with us.

Sincerely,

Peter Whittaker

Rainier Mountaineering, Inc.

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Upcoming Programs
Island Peak & Everest Base Camp Trek

This spring join RMI on an incredible journey and unforgettable adventure to the heart of the world's highest mountains. Spend two days in RMI's Everest Expedition Base Camp on the Khumbu Glacier during our Everest Base Camp Trek and then tackle Island Peak, a 20,000' Himalayan Peak standing in the shadow of Mt. Everest.

A RMI Team on top of Kala Patar.
Kilimanjaro Climb & Safari

Lush rainforests, exotic wildlife, rare vegetation, equatorial glaciers, and unbelievable landscapes: Mt. Kilimanjaro is a unforgettable climbing adventure. Join RMI this February to scale Mt. Kilimanjaro, Africa's tallest mountain. Afterwards enjoy a luxury wildlife safari - the ultimate escape and perfect end to a winter adventure!
  
 

Trekking through Kilimanjaro's rainforests.
Mexico's Volcanoes

Eager for a quick climbing adventure this winter? RMI's Mexico Volcanoes Climb offers a trip into Mexico's quiet countryside and up several of North America's tallest peaks, climbing to altitudes over 18,000'. This is a great program to venture altitudes significantly higher than Mt. Rainier, as well as for climbers constrained by time, to a beautiful and overlooked corner of the country.


 

An RMI team near the summit of Pico de Orizaba.
Winter Adventures: Ice Climbing, Ski Touring, and Winter Seminars

How about some winter adventures closer to home? Get out on the ice of Ouray, Colorado and learn how to swing those tools with our . Venture into the world of backcountry skiing and ski mountaineering on one of our Ski Programs, enjoying the legendary Northwestern snow of Mt. Rainier. Or build your climbing skills on one of our Expedition Skills Seminars - Winter, learning the skills and techniques of glacial climbing with a focus on cold weather and high altitude expedition mountaineering.

Ice Climbing in Ouray, CO.
Photo Contest

Danny Poff of Boones Mill, VA, has won this issue's photo contest, $250 RMI program credit, and the last, automatic entry into the grand prize drawing December 2011. Congratulations, Danny!

December is the grand prize drawing! Five winners from this year's contests go head-to-head...on-line! Click here to vote for the Grand Prize winner. The winner of the $500 trip credit (for total credit winnings of $750) will be announced in the December newsletter. For more information check out our photo contest details. Good luck!

Climber Conversation Bruce Freedman

We caught up with Dr. Bruce M. Freedman shortly after his September Expeditions Skills Seminar - Camp Muir to hear about his experiences climbing on Mt. Rainier and his previous international climbs.

Click here to read Bruce's Interview...

Denali National Park Climbing Allocations

Denali National Park and Preserve is reviewing the number of guided climbers allowed on Mt. McKinley each season. The National Park Service is making a judgment that guiding diminishes the quality of self-reliance and is not in accordance with the wilderness objectives of Denali. RMI has worked as a concessioner of Denali National Park and Preserve for over 35 years. The NPS recognizes that guided groups have less impact on the mountain than independent climbers. The NPS knows that guided groups have a better safety record, a better LNT record, and that they operate in cooperation with the NPS when it comes to rescues and assisting independent climbers. While the NPS proposes three options, only Alternative 3 gives the Park the flexibility to respond to public interest by having no cap on guiding so long as independent climbers are not blocked from opportunities to lead their own expeditions on the mountain. The comment period has been extended to October 31st and is the last chance to provide input on this issue. We need all climbers to express your opinion on this issue.

To review the three alternatives, please go to the NPS Park Planning website and click on "Climbing Allocations for Mt. McKinley."
Click here for a direct link to the Comment Form.

 

 

© 2009 Rainier Mountaineering, Inc. Post Office Box Q, 30027 State Route 706 E | Ashford | WA | 98304 | Ph: 888-892-5462

RMI Expeditions
RMI Newsletter
August 2011
888-892-5462
Greetings fellow climbers!

Sunrise over Little Tahoma as seen from 10,000' on Mt. Rainier.

What a great season on Mt. Rainier! Although the summer weather held off for a little longer than necessary, we are finally experiencing the beautiful, warm days of a Washington summer. Heavy snow received this spring has kept the mountain covered in a blanket of white making for ideal August climbing conditions. Wildflowers that typically bloom in late July are just now seeing the light of day and many of the lower hiking trails around Paradise are STILL covered in snow.

Personally, I have attempted Rainier five times this summer, twice with my good friend, RMI Guide Ed Viesturs. Of my five attempts I reached the summit on three. A bit less successful than expected but, hey, when the mountain says "no"... it is best not to argue. A few highlights from my climbs: watching the sun pop above the eastern horizon and hitting us high on the side of Rainier at 13,500', having snow on Disappointment Cleaver in mid-August, and climbing with a colorful group from Bellevue, WA along with my friend and CEO of First Ascent/Eddie Bauer, Neil Fiske. After 234 ascents you would think climbing Rainier would get easier... it does not. There are no shortcuts to the top, no way to summit without earning it. It is hard, but I love it.

Though it is mid-August and evening temperatures are dropping and a slight hint of yellow is coloring the leaves of the trees around Rainier BaseCamp, we still have a month of climbing left on Mt. Rainier. After that we look ahead to the annual Rainier Mountain Festival (Sept 10th and 11th) and the beginning of our climbs in the southern hemisphere. In November, RMI Guide Dave Hahn heads down to Antarctica to lead our Vinson Massif expeditions, the Ecuador, Mexico, and Aconcagua climbs begin shortly afterwards, and January kicks off our winter programs on Mt. Rainier.

As we continue to climb on Rainier and the great mountains of the world (hey, it's our job!) we hope that you can find the time to join the RMI Team for your next mountaineering adventure!

Sincerely,

Peter Whittaker

Rainier Mountaineering, Inc.

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Upcoming Programs
South America's Highest Peak: Aconcagua

The remote Andean valleys, towering penitentes, and high altitudes of Argentina's Cerro Aconcagua make it a favorite expedition of our guides. Aconcagua offers the ideal combination of adventure to high altitudes, experience in expedition style climbing, and the chance to scale one of the world's legendary Seven Summits.

Aconcagua as seen from the Relinchos Valley.
Climb to the "Roof of Africa"

Experience all of the excitement, adventure, and legend of climbing Tanzania's Mt. Kilimanjaro with RMI this winter. Ascending from the mountain's rainforest covered base to it's glacier capped summit and afterwards ending with a luxury wildlife safari, RMI's Kilimanjaro climbs are the ultimate winter adventure and escape.
  
 

Trekking through the heavy canopy on Kilimanjaro.
Head South to Mexico or Ecuador

Home to several of South America's highest volcanoes with climbing reminiscent of Mt. Rainier, the Ecuador and Mexico volcanoes are the perfect peaks to challenge climbers with a winter season climb. From the Ecuadorian markets of Otavalo or the quiet streets of Tlachichuca to ice-capped summits 18,000' above, RMI's climbs in Mexico and Ecuador bring you the challenge of high altitude climbing with excitement of international mountaineering expeditions, all in a short time frame.


 

Climbing beneath the rimed glaciers of Cotopaxi in Ecuador.
Experience a Winter Program on Mt. Rainier

Generations of American mountaineers have used Mt. Rainier as a training ground in preparation for expeditions to the world's biggest mountains. RMI's Expedition Skills Seminar - Winter teaches climbers the skills and techniques of glacial climbing with a focus on cold weather and high altitude expedition mountaineering.

Ascending the Ingraham Glacier in January.
Photo Contest

Clay Junell of Austin, TX, has won this issue's photo contest with his "Final Push Before the Cayambe Summit" photo. Clay receives a $250 RMI program credit and automatic entry into our Grand Prize Finalists in December 2011. Congratulations Clay!

Our next contest takes place in October. Remember to submit your favorite photo from an RMI program by October 10, 2011, to take part and have a chance to win the grand prize. For more information check out the contest details. Good luck!

Guide Shack from the women and men of RMI

Mike Uchal

An avid mountaineer, skier, river runner, and adventurer, RMI Guide Mike Uchal set a new RMI record this summer when he spent 35 consecutive days on Mt. McKinley over the span of two expeditions - edging out RMI Owner Joe Horiskey's record of 33 days that has stood since 1972! In addition to his climbing and guiding, Mike is an experienced Renewable Energy Technologies educator and working with RMI on several innovative projects for our programs. We caught up with Mike to hear about his season.

RMI: Backpacker Magazine recently published an article on what it takes to be a first year guide at RMI, how have things changed for you in your second year at RMI?

Mike Uchal (MU): While my responsibilities as a second year guide... Read more...

 

2011 Climb for To Return

RMI and To Return, Inc., a U.S. based non-profit organization dedicated to providing educational opportunities for the children of local porters and guides on Kilimanjaro, hosted the 2nd annual fundraising climb of Mt. Rainier in late July. Despite a chilly lenticular cloud cap that settled in over Rainier's top on summit day, the climb was very succesful. Read about the climb, see more photos, and learn about the scholarships being supported by the climb on the To Return website.

 

 

© 2009 Rainier Mountaineering, Inc. Post Office Box Q, 30027 State Route 706 E | Ashford | WA | 98304 | Ph: 888-892-5462

RMI Expeditions
RMI Newsletter
June 2011
888-892-5462
Greetings fellow climbers!

The RMI Team on the summit of Mt. Everest, May 21, 2011

The radio crackled to life at 6:55 a.m. Nepali Time, May 21st - RMI Guides Dave Hahn and Linden Mallory were calling from the summit of Mt. Everest.  Dave, Linden, Kaji Sherpa, and Tshering Sherpa found excellent climbing conditions and great weather on their summit bid. See photos and read about their ascent to the top of the world on the RMI Blog.

The Everest summit was a special moment for us at RMI because it came shortly after the passing of long time RMI guide, Himalayan legend, and national hero Nawang Gombu Sherpa. Gombu reached the summit of Everest with Jim Whittaker in 1963, and went on to become the first person to summit Everest twice. During his 25 years working at RMI,  Gombu inspired and introduced countless climbers to the mountains. Joe Horiskey writes ,“The running joke was that Gombu had three lungs.  He was an energetic, tireless climber who was uncomfortable with fame but always at home in the mountains.  His smile was as broad as his chest, and he smiled often.  As Director of the Himalayan Mountaineering Institute he left behind the prestige he commanded in his homeland to guide on Mt. Rainier numerous seasons without fanfare.  Personally, he was humble to a fault both in terms of mountaineering prowess as well as legendary physical strength.  He will be greatly missed.”  Dave Hahn reflects on his experience guiding with Gombu over the years in our Guide Shack section below.

We are honored to have worked with such a great man for over two decades and we enter this summer's climbing season continuing to be inspired by his humility and love of the mountains.

Sincerely,

Peter Whittaker

Rainier Mountaineering, Inc.

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Upcoming Programs
2011 Mt. McKinley Expeditions Update

Despite the Alaska Range’s unsettled May weather, four RMI expeditions reached the summit of Denali. Congratulations to the teams! The season continues with Tyler Jones, Jake Beren and Mike Haugen on the mountain at the moment.  Linden Mallory and Dave Hahn fly on shortly with their teams as the final expeditions of the 2011 season. Check out the teams reports on the RMI Blog and get inspired for next year: The 2012 McKinley Expedition dates are now posted: time to pull out those calendars and start planning your adventure!

Pulling sleds on the Kahiltna Glacier toward 11,000' camp. Photo: Jeff Rapp
Carstensz Pyramid - New Program!

Join RMI in Papua, Indonesia in 2012 as we launch our new Carstensz Pyramid Climb. We've drawn upon the collective years of experience of our guides to offer the best possible climbing experience on Carstensz. Partnered with local outfitters and led by our veteran guides, the journey from the equatorial jungles to the rocky summit is an unforgettable adventure on one of the world's Seven Summits.
  
 

Carstensz Pyramid (16,023’). Photo: Amy Meredith
December: Kilimanjaro & Aconcagua

Kilimanjaro - Holiday Adventures!
Looking for a different way to celebrate the holidays? Spend this year’s holiday season climbing Tanzania’s Mt. Kilimanjaro. Climbers on our December 20th Kilimanjaro Climb and Safari will spend Christmas on Kilimanjaro, and celebrate New Year’s Eve on the rim of the stunning Ngorogoro Crater.  For those looking for a more immediate escape, we have a few spots left on our August and September Kilimanjaro climbs.

Aconcagua - New December Date!
Climb Argentina’s Cerro Aconcagua, the highest mountain in the southern hemisphere and the tallest peak in the world outside of the Himalaya. Aconcagua is a classic climb and a perfect high altitude expedition.  Join RMI on the "Stone Sentinel" this winter.


 

Kilimanjaro - camped below the Great Barranco Wall
Escape to the North Cascades this summer

Looking for a weekend climbing adventure this summer? Venture to Washington’s North Cascades for some of the country’s best summer alpine climbing. Beautiful rock and ice routes offer excellent climbing and are a favorite climbing destination for our guides. RMI’s North Cascades climbs are perfect for climbers eager to get onto classic alpine climbs under the guidance and instruction of our knowledgeable guides.  

Climbers embarking on the final scramble to the summit of Mt. Shuksan
Photo Contest

Lori Stewart of Lakewood, CO, has won this issue's photo contest with her "Heading Home" photo.  Lori receives a $250 RMI program credit and automatic entry into our Grand Prize drawing December 2011. Congratulations Lori!

Our next contest takes place in August. Remember to submit your favorite photo from an RMI program by August 10, 2011, to take part and have a chance to win the grand prize. For more information check out the contest details. Good luck!

Guide Shack from the women and men of RMI

Nawang Gombu, 1936-2011

By Dave Hahn

The most famous RMI guide that ever lived was also a profoundly humble man in an arena not known for fostering humility.  Nawang Gombu Sherpa was a man of many such contrasts.

My memories of working with Gombu aren’t unique or privileged.  I wasn’t seeing some side of him that others weren’t privy to.  But because of his unassuming nature, casual acquaintances might have mistaken his stature in the world.  Certainly not, if they’d studied mountaineering  and 20th century world history.  Gombu was the first man to summit Mount Everest twice.  Read more...

 

Camp Patriot Fundraiser July 9th at Qwest Field

RMI is partnering with Camp Patriot again this year for the 2011 Camp Patriot Mt. Rainier Climb, a climb of Mt. Rainier with our wounded veterans. Join Camp Patriot and the Seattle Seahawks at Qwest Field on July 9th for a dinner and fundraiser and to wish the veterans the best before they set off on the climb. Click here for more information and tickets to attend.

 

Camp Patriot Team on the summit of Mt. Rainier. 
Photo: Camp Patriot Collection

 

 

© 2009 Rainier Mountaineering, Inc. Post Office Box Q, 30027 State Route 706 E | Ashford | WA | 98304 | Ph: 888-892-5462

RMI Expeditions
RMI Newsletter
April 2011
888-892-5462
Greetings fellow climbers!

Is spring here yet? Hopefully you are experiencing warmer temperatures and the hint of color blooming around you. Here in Washington we are still waiting. We have seen snow twice this week in Ashford and Paradise is boasting over 200 inches on the ground. Our final Mt. Rainier Expedition Skills Seminar for the winter, led by Brent Okita and Casey Grom, wrapped up last week. The team camped lower on the mountain before reaching Camp Muir. Any accumulation of snow during the week was swept away by 80 mph winds! These are the times we are thankful for the bunkhouse at Camp Muir! The team was able to spend lots of time training on the mountain and preparing for bigger objectives.

The RMI Everest Base Camp Trek & Island Peak team, led by RMI Guide Linden Mallory, had a fantastic trip through Nepal and enjoyed their time on the trail and at Everest Base Camp. The team was able to summit both Kala Patar and Island Peak. Linden has now joined RMI Guides Dave Hahn and Mark Tucker and climbers Bill and Sara at Everest Base Camp as the final member of the Mt. Everest Expedition. Follow along on the RMI Blog as the team begins their rotations at Camp 1.

Our summer season is just around the corner. Mt. McKinley Expeditions begin May 3rd with RMI Guides Mike Walter, Seth Waterfall and Ed Viesturs leading the first trips of the season. On Mt. Rainier, the climbs begin on May 14th. We are looking forward to the buzz around Ashford as our climbing teams gather to begin their summit attempts.

We hope to see you on a mountain soon.

Peter Whittaker

The 2011 Everest Expedition Puja Ceremony taking place at Everest Base Camp.
Upcoming Programs
Heading South for the Winter

It is not too early to start planning your next adventure - especially when that means heading to Mexico or Ecuador during their summer months for some warm, dry weather!

Ecuador - Space is still available on our Ecuador's Volcanoes program November 29 - 3 December, 2011. This trip is a perfect combination of climbing and culture. Climb the glaciated peaks of Cotopaxi (19,348') and Cayambe (18,997'), visit a local Ecuadorian market, enjoy a tour of Colonial Quito, and stay in traditional haciendas.

Mexico - Join us December 3 - 11, 2011 for climbs of both Pico de Orizaba and Ixtaccihuatl. These climbs are a great next step after sharpening your crampons on Mt. Rainier.

A beautiful summit day in Ecuador.
Climbing Aconcagua

Climber Sid Eland joined RMI in January for the Aconcagua Expedition. We spoke with him last week about that expedition.

RMI: What about your climb was so much better than you expected?

Sid Eland: The weather was better that I expected even though it is one thing I know you can never count on. The food and accommodations were also better than I anticipated. Thats not surprising, however, as I have come to expect excellence from RMI programs.

RMI: What did you enjoy most about Argentina?

Click here to continue Sid's Interview...

Don't wait... 2012 Aconcagua Expeditions dates are posted now.

 

The view from High Camp on Aconcagua.
North Cascades of Washington

Are you ready to broaden your climbing horizons beyond Mt. Rainier? The North Cascades of Washington offer a broad range of climbs for both the novice and expert.

Fun and easy alpine rock climbs, complex glaciated peaks, cascading waterfalls, and breathtaking alpine basins with numerous classic routes wait right outside our tent door. The North Cascades truly has it all.

Join us for a moderate ascent of Mt. Shuksan's Sulphide Glacier or some classic alpine rock climbing on the West Ridge of Forbidden, one of the "Fifty Classic Climbs of North America." For a climb that has it all, take a look at the Fisher's Chimney route on Mt. Shuksan's dramatic north side: moderate glacier and rock terrain, a stunning high camp, and a striking summit make this a guide's favorite.

Would you like to create your own adventure? You can hire a RMI guide on a private basis for a North Cascade climb or for personalized instruction. Whatever your climbing goals may entail, RMI's North Cascade guides have the climb for you.

On the Summit of Forbidden Peak
The Roof of Africa

Our Kilimanjaro Climb & Safari begins in Arusha, Tanzania. Spending six nights and seven days on the mountain provides a great experience for our teams. And along with help from our Tanzanian porters, guides and cooks, our summit success on Kilimanjaro is over 90%!

The Summit of Kilimanjaro February 20th with 100% of the team on top.
Photo Contest

Bruce Lytle of Auburn, WA, has won this issue's photo contest with his picture of Little Tahoma. Bruce receives a $250 RMI program credit,and automatic entry into the grand prize drawing this December 2011. Congratulations Bruce!

Little Tahoma Facts

Little Tahoma - At 11,138', it is the third highest summit in Washington. Little 'T' as it is known, is a 'satellite' or sub-peak of Mt Rainier. Geologists hypothesize it was formerly connected to the main mountain. Prior to the Osceola Mudflow 5,600 years ago, Rainier's summit stood 16,000'. Note the lines of strata trending upward and westward and you can imagine the former breadth of Mt Rainier.

A major rockfall from the N. face of Little Tahoma occurred on December 14, 1964. The boom was heard at nearby Crystal Mountain ski area, but clouds shrouded the mountain. Rock debris from this event blankets the lower Emmons Glacier, and is visible to climbers on the route from Camp Muir.

June is our next contest. Remember to submit your favorite photo from an RMI program by May 15, 2011, to take part in next issues contest and chance to win the grand prize. For more information check out the contest details. Good luck!

Guide Shack from the women and men of RMI

Full time climber, adventurer, and RMI Guide Eric Frank is used to being on the move. Since starting with RMI in 2008, he has spent full summers guiding in the Pacific Northwest and large parts of the off-seasons travelling to survey many of North America's greatest climbing locations. After hundreds of nights spent in a sleeping bag in locations from Mexico to Alaska, his conclusion "I've only scratched the surface. I'm going to need a lot more time!" We recently had the chance to sit down and chat with Eric about life.

RMI: Eric, how are you doing? How was your winter?

Eric Frank (EF): It has been a great winter! I was able to spend part of December in Ohio visiting my family and some long lost friends. Once January rolled around I headed to Colorado to ski and ice climb. After a month of nearly perfect weather, I drove north to sample the warmer temps and deep snow here in the Pacific Northwest. The rest of the spring has been split between guiding, climbing and some office work.

RMI: You recently got back from an Orizaba Express trip to the Mexican Volcanoes. Tell us about that...

Click here to continue Eric's interview...

Kilimanjaro Porters Assistance Project Update

On March 29 the Kilimanjaro Porters Assistance Project (KPAP) office in Moshi, Tanzania was filled to the ceiling with boxes received from your generous donations from our "10,000 for 2010." From across the U.S.A to Ashford and then on to Dar Es Salaam, the gear was gathered from Customs by the KPAP team and transported to Moshi. They are busy inventorying and sorting. This gear will soon be lent to porters while they are working on Kilimanjaro. We are very excited to have been able to facilitate the gathering and sending of gear to the hard-working, well-deserving porters and look forward to seeing our porters better equipped when helping our teams reach the summit of Kilimanjaro.

Thank you to everyone who participated in this project. We extend a special thanks to RMI Guide Dave Conlan for his vision and assistance in getting the program started, and KPAP Program Manager Karen Valenti. Without all of you who contributed to this great cause, however, nothing could have happened - so thank you the most!

Asante sana (Thank you)!

© 2011 Rainier Mountaineering, Inc. Post Office Box Q, 30027 State Route 706 E | Ashford | WA | 98304 | Ph: 888-892-5462

RMI Expeditions
RMI Newsletter
February 2011
888-892-5462
Greetings fellow climbers!

Although it's only February, this year has already been full of adventure here at RMI.  Shortly after the New Year I traded the long winter nights of the Northwest for the midnight sun of the Antarctic, climbing the Vinson Massif with fellow RMI guides Ed Viesturs, Caroline George, and Seth Waterfall. Afterwards we completed several first ascents and ski descents in the Ellsworth Mountain area. It was a great expedition and you can catch up on our dispatches on the RMI Blog.

While we were in Antarctica, Gabriel Barral and his team were climbing Argentina’s Aconcagua, finding unheard of conditions on the summit: warm temperatures and no winds! Mike Walter and his team found similar conditions during their Ecuador Volcanoes climb in January as well. Our February Expedition Skills Seminar reached the summit of Mt. Rainier on a beautiful winter day and our second Aconcagua expedition, led by Billy Nugent, reached the summit on Valentine’s Day. They are back in Mendoza enjoying a well deserved steak and glass of Malbec!

Meanwhile RMI teams are climbing Kilimanjaro and the Volcanoes of Mexico.  Our Himalayan climbs begin next month with teams trekking to Everest Basecamp, climbing Island Peak and Mt. Everest; be sure to follow all the daily reports on our blog.

We’ve posted all of our 2012 international dates on our website so pull out that calendar and start planning!

We look forward to seeing you out in the mountains this year!

Peter Whittaker

P.S. The Travel + Leisure World's Best 2011 Survey is going on now, please help RMI score well! Cast your vote in the section for Tour Operators/Safari Outfitters. Thanks for your support!

Peter Whittaker leads his rope team up the final summit ridge of Vinson Massif
Upcoming Programs
McKinley (May/June)

Finished an Expedition Skills Seminar on Mt. Rainier? Take the next step... to Denali.  Sitting deep in the heart of the Alaska Range and rising 18,000’ above tundra, Denali is a true mountaineering adventure. 

We are gearing up for the 2011 McKinley climbing season and our expeditions are filling quickly!   Join RMI and our more than 35 years of experience climbing Alaska’s “The High One” this spring.

Mount McKinley Summit Ridge
Seminars (May - October)

RMI’s Expedition Skills Seminars have taught generations of climbers the skills needed to venture safely into the mountains. 

Our Expedition Skills Seminar - Muir has been the standard of excellence for mountaineering seminars for over forty years. Based out of Camp Muir, days are spent on nearby glaciers where we focus on developing the mountaineering skills to pursue bigger mountains like McKinley and Aconcagua. A flexible itinerary means increased chances for a successful summit bid of Mt. Rainier. 

NEW!!!  On the Expedition Skills Seminar - Paradise, we ascend the Paradise Glacier where excellent summer ice climbing can be found. From our high camp we summit via the Disappointment Cleaver Route. This program places an emphasis on technical training and building mountaineering skills. It’s a great compliment to our existing seminar lineup and we’re pleased to be running it!

Further to the north our Alaska Mountaineering Seminars fly into Denali Base Camp and spend nine days learning mountaineeirng skills while experience the terrain and weather of the great Alaska range.  We put our new skills to the test with a summit attempt of Mt. Francis in the shadow of Denali.

Come climb with us!

 

Climbing with a spectacular sunrise on Mt. Rainier
Cho Oyu (August - September)

Join our 2011 fall expedition to Cho Oyu on a journey that takes you from Kathmandu to Lhasa and the world’s sixth highest mountain. Cho Oyu is widely considered the most accessible of the 8,000 meter peaks and climbing with RMI’s Himalayan veteran, Casey Grom, on this expedition is ideal for those with previous high altitude experience and seeking a classic Himalayan climb.

RMI team climbing the ice cliff traverse
Vinson (November)

Venture to the midst of the Antarctice Ice Sheet to scale the Vinson Massif, the highest point in Antarctica, in an adventure unlike any other on earth. Experience matters when climbing one of the most remote mountain in the world: join RMI Guide Dave Hahn on our November 2011 expedition who in addition to his records on Everest has 27 ascents of Vinson and is the most experienced and sought after Vinson Guide around.

Vinson Sled Pulling
Photo Contest

Steve Brush of Willow Spring, NC, has won this issue's photo contest, $250 RMI program credit, and automatic entry into the grand prize drawing this December 2011. Congratulations Steve.

April is our next contest. Remember to submit your favorite photo from an RMI program by March 15, 2011 to take part in next issue’s contest and chance to win the grand prize. For more information check out the contest details. Good luck!

Guide Shack from the women and men of RMI

RMI: Ed, welcome home from Vinson. In addition to your climbing and guiding you are the head spokesperson for Source44, an organization that helps companies identify the sustainability of their supply chains, how did you become involved?

Ed Viesturs (EV): I met the founder Jess Kraus years ago when he ran a company called 3E. He had hired me for a speaking event and we became friendS afterwards. We've stayed in touch and when he decided to form Source44 he asked me to become involved as spokesperson. I'm also a shareholder. It's a worthy enterprise to be involved with - a business that really does some good. Carbon footprinting of materials, products and even the buisinesses themselves is becoming very popular ... Click here to read more

© 2010 Rainier Mountaineering, Inc. Post Office Box Q, 30027 State Route 706 E | Ashford | WA | 98304 | Ph: 888-892-5462