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Expedition Skills Seminar - Emmons

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  • Show Trip Info

    Price
    $2325
    Deposit
    $400
    Duration
    6 days
    Difficulty
    Level 3
    Type
    Skills
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Expedition Skills Seminar - Emmons

Expedition Skills Seminar - Emmons

RMI's Expedition Skills Seminar - Emmons is a six day instructional mountaineering course with a summit attempt on Mt. Rainier via the Emmons Glacier route.

EXPEDITION HIGHLIGHTS

  • 2 days of foundational skills training and 4 days of extensive practical training while climbing the largest glacier in the contiguous U.S.: Mt. Rainier’s Emmons Glacier.
  • An expedition-style climb allows us to establish successive tented camps as we ascend the mountain in preparation for our summit bid.
  • Develop strong technical skills and gain foundational mountaineering experience.

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Our Expedition Skills Seminar on the Emmons route climbs a classic Mt. Rainier route with emphasis on developing mountaineering skills. After a Technical Training Day and a Mountaineering Day School, we ascend the Emmons route, using the mountain's terrain to learn mountaineering skills such as snow & ice anchors, crevasse rescue, ice climbing, fixed line travel, belaying and other technical skills, before making a summit attempt from our high camp at Camp Schurman.

Utilizing a less traveled route on the northeastern side of Mt. Rainier, our Expedition Skills Seminar – Emmons captures the best aspects of summer climbing on Mt. Rainier's far-flung glaciers. The Emmons Glacier route is truly an endurance climb, beginning on the forested Glacier Basin Trail and ending on the glacier-capped summit of Mt. Rainier.

Our Expedition Skills Seminars are comprehensive training courses designed to educate climbers to the mountaineering skills needed to tackle the world's greatest peaks. Successful completion of the Expedition Skill Seminar - Emmons will make you eligible for many of our expeditions around the world, including Denali, and provides you with a foundation for other major glaciated mountains.

THE RMI DIFFERENCE

The Mountain Guides at RMI have a reputation as top guides in the United States. RMI Guides participated in some of America's first ventures into the far reaches of the Himalaya. Years of expedition guiding and climbing around the world have built a core of consummate professional guides.

Our guides are celebrated teachers and trainers, known for their leadership as well as their character. They possess the compassion, enthusiasm and ability to empower others and inspire them forward. Such qualities may only be found in people at the top of their profession. Despite their vast experience, RMI Guides still remember their own first steps into the mountains, and enjoy helping other climbers reach new heights.

Our exceptional focus to detail, our unparalleled level of climber attention, and our genuine excitement for these adventures make our programs truly memorable.

SAFETY

RMI strives to create the safest mountain experience possible. Our experienced team of guides focuses on leading fun and successful climbs without compromising safety. Each climb includes careful pre-trip planning, daily weather forecasts, avalanche forecasts, and diligent attention to detail. All RMI Guides are highly trained in remote medicine and rescue skills and carry comprehensive medical kits, rescue equipment, and radio communication equipment throughout the program. Regardless of the objective or the destination, safety remains RMI’s top priority.


NPS Authorized ConcessionerAuthorized Concessioner

RMI Expeditions is an authorized concessioner of Mount Rainier National Park.

Address comments to:
Superintendent | Mount Rainier National Park
55210 238th Avenue East
Ashford, WA 98304

These services are operated in an area under jurisdiction of the U.S. Department of the Interior. No discrimination by segregation or other means in the furnishing of services or privileges on the basis of race, creed, color, ancestry, sex, age, disabling condition or national origin is permitted in the use of this facility. Violation of this prohibition are punishable by fine, imprisonment, or both.

Climate Change

OffsettersAll of our climbs in Mt. Rainier National Park are 100% carbon neutral. We have partnered with Offsetters, Canada's leading carbon management solutions provider, to purchase offsets for our greenhouse gas emissions. Their projects are verified and validated by third parties to ensure that the emission reductions are real, additional, and permanent, so we know that our contribution is making a real difference.

By supporting this project, we prevent the equivalent amount of greenhouse gas emissions that were generated by our operations from being emitted somewhere else. These offsets allow us to achieve our goal of sustainability and further promote responsible environmental practices.

Contact Us

As you prepare for your upcoming adventure please feel free to contact our office and speak directly to one of our experienced guides regarding equipment, conditioning, the route, or any other questions you may have about our programs. We are available Monday thru Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at (888) 89-CLIMB or info@rmiguides.com.


Climber Reviews

Filter By
08/22/2018
I climb exclusively with RMI. I recommend them to everyone that will listen due to my two extremely amazing experiences. I feel like part of a team and not a customer when I'm climbing with RMI and I know I will be safe and that matters.
Geoffrey D.

08/15/2018
Obviously the climb was the goal but what I enjoyed the most was the camaraderie we had as a team while we faced the challenge of the summit. RMI just employs some of the best most motivating people to be guides. I had no idea what to expect and was still blown away by how much fun I had climbing with the team.
Alden D.

08/06/2018
I enjoyed learning about mountaineering and it was just so beautiful out there! Sherman was breathtaking, this was by far my favorite expedition.
Anna F.

07/27/2018
I will be recommending RMI to anyone and everyone who is looking for a guided trip. This Emmons Seminar provided me with all the tools I need to feel comfortable climbing Denali. I feel so comfortable with rope travel and anchors because we were actually able to implement many of the tools we learned on days 1 and 2, while on the glacier. I came off the mountain higher than life - and still feel that way! This experience was by far, the best experience and best week of my life!
Kim C.

07/26/2018
The course was comprehensive and enabled me to do more than just "summit". I learned life skills from knots, to camp skills, to leadership skills. Safety was never compromised and will continue to climb with RMI because of that.
Clayton W.

07/26/2018
Honestly we had a great team. The guides were so positive and competent. We felt really lucky to have such a great team. We also had a great group of climbers. Again we felt really lucky to have such a great team of climbers and people to hang out with for 6 days!!
Mason K.

07/26/2018
The guides were all great. Learned a ton from them, and the overall experience was amazing. I really enjoyed the crevasse rescue exercises we did.
Ryan H.

07/22/2018
Outstanding! I would recommended RMI to anyone and will not climb with anyone else.
Tim M.

07/01/2018
Is "everything" a cheat answer? I loved learning skills beyond what I thought I'd learn, met some really interesting folks who share similar passions, being outside all day, the climb, the exercise, the views, etc..
Nicole W.

06/14/2018
Everyone was very pleasant and I loved learning anything and everything from Zeb Dustin Joe and James
Timothy W.

10/18/2017
It was the Guides and the people on the climb with me. we all got along really well and it really made the trip for me. I have definitely made some new friends after this trip.
Daniel S.

08/06/2017
Honestly it was more about the climb than the summit. It's the journey that shapes us right? Our team clicked so well. We had many laughs and worked super well together. The guides picked up on this and helped keep our team strong
Keith G.

08/01/2017
I like that the guides on our seminar provided direction but did not hold people's hands. The course was set up in a way that prepared the group for more advanced objectives.
William C.

07/08/2017
Very rewarding, wonderful experience. It was a true privilege to be on that wonderful mountain with such a great bunch of people!
Stephan S.

07/05/2017
I loved getting to experience real mountaineering. I had done other climbs in the cascades before, but none with roping up, ice axes, and heavy duty mountaineering boots/crampons. I liked getting to not only climb Rainier, but to learn a lot of invaluable stuff along the way.
Daniel D.

06/26/2017
My experience with RMI was great. What stood out most was your team. It is obvious that RMI has a great company culture. Everyone I interacted with was friendly and helpful. I will definitely be back to climb Rainier again. Next time I do, it will be through RMI. I will use RMI again because of the experience I had with Mike, Jenny, Jessie and Ben.
Ryan B.

06/17/2017
The guides, the team and the scenery. I learned alot about safe travel on emaciated terrain.
Tracy L.

08/23/2016
The commitment to LNT and the privacy of the mountain was fantastic. I couldn't ask for a more peaceful time on the mountain.
Tyler T.

08/23/2016
The overall experience was amazing. I think RMI is an exceptional company with the best guides! I really enjoyed the timeline for the trip.
Rebecca P.

08/14/2016
The expert training. Being new to Mountaineering this course was the perfect level of hands on detail to the many skills you need to be effective and safe going forward.
Jeff S.

08/12/2016
Summit day and the feeling of accomplishment once we got to the summit of Mount Rainier. To be completely honest though, the entire trip was so great that the whole entire week itself was what I enjoyed most.
Anthony B.

08/08/2016
The guides and the skills - I feel we got everything we were promised.
Olga W.

07/28/2016
Absolutely amazing. The entirety of the trip - from interaction with the office staff, to the itinerary and pace of the trip, to the people and guides on it - all stellar. I have recommended your company numerous times in the past and will continue to.
Michael W.

07/19/2016
The guides were awesome. The skills that I learned were by far the best part of the trip. The climb itself was a close second.
Jeremy L.

07/19/2016
The detailed instruction on climbing and safety. But nothing beat the actual trip to the summit. That is a memory I will never forget.
Robert W.

07/14/2016
I thought the guides were the best part of the trip. It's hard to have a great trip if you don't have guides who you click with. They made the trip.
Prescott C.

07/14/2016
Learned a ton of skills and loved being on the mountain.
Jared E.

07/13/2016
Making such a challenging and sometimes painful experience, so much fun and exciting of an experience. Most of the comments in credit to Mike were what made this an amazing experience. Flawless.
Gareth J.

07/06/2016
Learning about the characteristics of the mountain (weather, crevices, ice and rock fall) and how to navigate them safely was very fascinating and exciting.
Ellen D.

07/03/2016
1) Being on an amazing adventure with my sons.
Marvin A.

06/17/2016
Learning from people that are passionate about what they do. The guides love the outdoors and it shows.
Paul B.

10/03/2015
Not only were the guides amazing but our group was as well. Even though we did not summit the knowledge and experience is unforgettable.
Roseanne A.

08/31/2015
The Emmons route was a far different experience than when I climbed the DC route with RMI 5 years ago. From the heavier pack to the longer approach through the forest, it was as if I was on a different mountain. I think overall I enjoyed the challenge of an expedition style approach and the lack of traffic on the route. Can't believe we had both the route and the summit pretty much to ourselves!
Russell F.

08/28/2015
The detailed discussions on mountaineering techniques, skills, and equipment. Thanks for sharing the knowledge.
Mike B.

08/24/2015
Learning the basic mountaineering and glacier travel skills from a group of guides that were all willing and enthusiastic about teaching and sharing their knowledge.
Tye H.

08/24/2015
The skills based learning was the best part. Certainly learned a lot that I will be able to apply toward future climbs.
Peter L.

08/19/2015
team comradery, guides sharing knowledge & experience, sense of adventure.
Chris M.

08/19/2015
What really made this trip for me was how much we learned. The guides shared so much information with us, and the real-life crevasse practice was also incredibly helpful. I also enjoyed interacting with the guides; it would have been a very different trip if we hadn't had such friendly guides.
Catherine G.

08/11/2015
I really enjoyed and thought highly of our guides. They were all very competent, which I expected. But, I genuinely enjoyed spending 6 days with them. They shared lots of knowledge and created an appropriately fun and light atmosphere.
Zach S.

08/10/2015
The camaraderie.
Anthony D.

08/07/2015
Just the overall challenge, pushing ourselves through some beautiful country. I could not place one thing per se, but it was a collection. While I was not super excited about doing the crevasse rescue when we had a long climb down yet on the final day it actually was really cool and I am glad they had everyone take turns at every position. That sort of hands on style and accountability forces me to learn things much better.
Jeffrey M.

07/30/2015
The guides were what made this trip amazing. I can't say enough good things about them!
Jeremy S.

07/29/2015
I liked the small group environment and the guide to guest ratio. I found the crevasse rescue training very valuable.
Iain S.

07/29/2015
The people (the other clients), the process (itinerary), the learning (the skills seminar), the time spent in the mountains with true professionals (the guides), and the folks that made it happen (the RMI staff).
Scott K.

07/21/2015
You guys did a great job in planning great weather for our summit day :). Not too cold, not too hot. Just kidding, the experience on the mountain was incredible. The pace was great. The skills seminars were great. The whole experience was so seamless, hard to call out one thing I enjoyed the most. I guess summit day was a great challenge and experience and the views were other worldly.
Mason K.

07/20/2015
The scenery was obviously incredible. I was extremely impressed with the guides' ability to instruct, lead, and really just manage climbers, like myself, with very little experience with the apparent ease and enthusiasm they did. It made for a very enjoyable experience.
William W.

07/15/2015
Meeting people with similar ideas of fun.
Edward S.

07/13/2015
The people- guides and other students
Douglas K.

07/07/2015
I really enjoyed the seminar format. We had time to really get to know our teammates and guides and take our time getting from camp to camp. I also enjoyed learning rescue techniques and having the chance to ice climb in a crevasse... while still achieving our ultimate goal of summiting.
Shannon W.

06/30/2015
RMI did an excellent job. The trip was very enjoyable, the guides were great and I will definitely consider future trips with RMI.
Byron C.

06/23/2015
Friendly staff and beautiful mountain! This is what climbing is all about!
William S.

06/22/2015
Interaction with amazing guides. Learning.
Ewa B.

09/16/2014
I loved getting to know my other group members and enjoying our time on the mountain as a big team
George H.

09/08/2014
The guides were so cool, it just made the trip so fun. Also, the summit was cool. The 4 guys worked so good together and their humor was perfect. Encouragement when climbing, and humor and good stories when relaxing.
Bennett D.

09/07/2014
the guides. They were all amazing. The leave no trace behind tactics being practiced on the mountain has left the mountain very well preserved. It's a beautiful place.
Tom M.

08/27/2014
Great experience, wonderful and knowledgeable guides. Memories that will last a lifetime.
Chad M.

08/26/2014
All aspects I enjoyed.
Tamara B.

08/20/2014
The cohesiveness of the group and the opportunity to climb with experienced and knowledgeable guides was the best part of the trip, no doubt.
Sam D.

08/19/2014
The guides on this trip we're fantastic.
Brian C.

08/11/2014
The weather conditions made for great success. Having done the DC last year really provided a good foundation for this year's seminar in terms of expectations for physical demands and further developing technical skills.
Brian B.

08/06/2014
Learning from the guides. They have so much combined knowledge and were more than happy to freely give it. The main purpose of this trip for me was to learn the skills to apply to my independent mountaineering ambitions. I got way more information than I was expecting and couldn't be happier with the way it was delivered.
Owen E.

07/31/2014
I LOVED this trip!!! Probably the biggest factor in our overall success was the highly positive and upbeat tone that Pete and the guide team set from the very beginning. They got along incredibly well, kept things interesting and fun, laughed and smiled a lot and treated everyone with respect. Also they seemed very relaxed, never rushed and projected confidence that we all picked up on. As a result, our group got along very well, learned A TON, and ended up helping each other for the good of the team. Except for some soft snow encountered on our descent on summit day, we could not have had better conditions for our climb. The weather and the mountain were just about perfect for us.I was a little surprised that after having made it down from the summit and then taking a few hours rest, Pete roused us out for crevasse training! (I thought we should be taking the rest of the day off!) However, crevasse rescue turned out to be my very best experience for the entire trip! I loved going down in the crevasse and having 10-15 minutes to look down inside as my team was preparing to haul me out. I had no idea how deep, how big and how beautiful and spectacular a seemingly "minor" crevasse could be. I came away with an entirely new respect for crevasses and the importance of avoiding any falls near them. Back on the top side, I thoroughly enjoyed learning anchor, rope and pulley techniques from Mike. When it was time for me to lead, he always was there encouraging me, projecting incredible confidence and coaching in a very calm manner. I learned a lot and never had any doubts that we would succeed. What a great experience!
Craig F.

07/28/2014
It's hard to beat being on the mountain and looking out over the landscape...or down into it when I was doing crevace rescue. As far as RMI goes, I thought your guides were the best part hands down. You've hired good people in Pete, Mike, Bridget and Billy.
Tim R.

07/27/2014
The people and guides! I really enjoyed our group, we had a fantastic group! I loved the route and wish we could have completed it.
Kim M.

07/25/2014
Climbing on ropes, camping, climbing with a group.
Steve W.

07/16/2014
I most enjoyed interfacing with guides and other clients. Learning their backgrounds and skill sets. The summit was, of course, enjoyable, but I will always remember the people who got me there.
Kearney S.

07/16/2014
I really enjoyed the professionalism and down to earth attitudes of the guides. Walter and Katie were solid leaders during the training days and during the climb. Bridget and Chase provided great support during the climb and also had great attitudes, giving advice and sharing personal knowledge to help everyone become better climbers.
Ryan L.

07/11/2014
The challenge, learning new stuff, camaraderie
Andrew B.

07/04/2014
I really enjoyed the entire trip. The guides were fun, professional, and knowledgeable, and I felt safe with them the entire time.
Andrew C.

01/26/2014
The entire trip from booking to enjoying my beer at base camp. Whitaker bunkhouse was terrific, the rental shop was more than helpful. And of course the guides where all great.
Braunsen K.

09/07/2013
I enjoyed everything about this trip. Summiting was an especially moving experience for me for a variety of reasons, but simply spending time on the mountain and meeting a group of fantastic, fascinating people was wonderful. The guides were exceptional, and the experience was unforgettable. Can't wait for my next climb with RMI.
Jake G.

09/04/2013
The comraderie and bonds that formed between our team and our guides. Most of us were strangers before we met at base camp, but the friendships that were established on the peak will far outlast this one climb. We already have our next trip scheduled, and many of us will be climbing together again. I'd love to climb with any of the guides again as well, and plan to look them up as I plan my future climbs.
Brett W.

08/27/2013
Just being on the mountain, taking it all in. the information, the desolation, the mountain, the people, the experience. It's a lot to process sometimes.
Jake J.

08/19/2013
the great learning. the interactions with the guides and other climbers. a great experience. best mountain experience that i have had so far.
Jeong Y.

08/16/2013
I couldnt have hoped to learn as much as I did from the guides throughout the seminar-summit trip. Encouragement from the guides, who could see that I could make the summit when I couldnt see it myself was so great. RMI offers such a great trip and I will be using RMI again next season.
Jake W.

08/12/2013
The instruction was great.
Scott W.

08/08/2013
The guides were always attentive and provided a professional and rewarding experience. I will use RMI again because of this.
Terry R.

08/07/2013
Hanging with the guides. I would seriously pick hanging with this group of guides over handing with my favorite band backstage. I was so impressed by the guides and their professionalism balanaced by their experience. I can't say enough...
Dean J.

08/06/2013
Zeb, Robby, Lindsay and Alex
Linn P.

08/05/2013
I'm being generous with the rating, but I am giving it an average because of my respect for what the guides do. Personally, it was a "poor" experience compared to my other RMI experiences.
Bill C.

07/25/2013
Learning rescue techniques and rope work
Casey C.

07/20/2013
The location - seeing Mount Rainier and the National Park. Being challenged mentally and physically. Hanging out at the RMI Base Camp with other mountaineers. Ice Cream at the bunk house. Buying new gear. Learning about and experiencing the functionality of gear and clothing. Learning mountaineering skills and camping. Appreciating nature.
Tara B.

07/19/2013
The skills like crevasse rescue, ice climbing, rope walking, etc.
Rakesh R.

07/14/2013
I really get a kick out of mountaineering. I love being up on the glaciers and going high and having to learn new skills. I particularly enjoy the challenge. Committing to this sport at my age is in many ways life changing. It forces me to set long term diet and physcal fitness goals in a way that I have never experienced before. I think of myself as pretty fit and I lead an active (semi-retired) lifestyle - I hike in the mountains around Sun Valley, ID, I ski there 45 days a year, I play lots of golf and walk (I eschew electric carts), I bike, I fly fish in trout streams (rocky bottoms in current is great for balance) and I love being outside in nature and in the mountains. This sort of adventure simply elevates all of the challenges - I truly understand that to do this you have to be really fit. I understand that there is lots to learn to climb in the mountains safely. I understand that there are objective dangers and that there are conditions and situations beyond our control that may affect whether or not a climb will result in a summit attained. But I have learned that the journey is as much fun and the summit. And by journey, I mean reading about mountaineering, working out to stay fit and building up to the experience. My only regret is that I did not start doing this until I was 61. Thanks to RMI for creating this terrific set of experiences and for making it as safe as possible.
Jim D.

07/08/2013
The staff.
Craig W.

07/03/2013
Learning the skills i need from people that really know their stuff.
Dan S.

06/30/2013
Being on the mountain with good company!
Rob C.

06/19/2013
Learning the mountaineering skills by the instructors; knots, crevasse rescue, ice climbing, and glisadding.
Johnny V.

06/17/2013
Everything was great but if I had to pick one I would say the guides are great. It is obvious that RMI makes a great effort to put the best guides in the industry on their team on on the mountain. I hope to keep in touch with everyone of them and get the opportunity to climb with them soon!
John S.

06/14/2013
Views near the summit.
Donald K.

Table of Contents
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Day 1

TECHNICAL TRAINING DAY

8:00 - 6:00 p.m.: Meet at 8:00 a.m. at Rainier BaseCamp in Ashford, WA. Please dress casually and bring your climbing equipment and clothing.

We begin our Technical Training Day with a welcome and introduction of team members and guides. Throughout the day, the guides provide a focused introduction to a variety of topics. These include a detailed equipment discussion and gear check; an introduction to safety practices such as use of helmets, harnesses, and avalanche transceivers; route planning and preparation, instruction regarding Leave No Trace practices and environmental considerations; and a discussion/demonstration of knots, anchors and the first steps toward understanding crevasse rescue. These skills prepare us for our adventure on Mt. Rainier and increase the likelihood of a safe, successful ascent of the mountain.

Please make your own arrangements for the day's meals and a place to stay in the Ashford area for this evening.

Technical Training Day



Day 2

THE MOUNTAINEERING DAY SCHOOL

8:15 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.: Meet at 8:15 a.m. at Rainier BaseCamp. Please arrive dressed for hiking, packed with your Mountaineering Day School gear. After a team meeting a shuttle takes our group to Paradise.

The Mountaineering Day School is spent training in the field on the lower slopes of Mt. Rainier. Climbers are introduced to many skills, from the basic techniques of efficient mountain travel (rest-stepping and pressure breathing), to various safety practices including use of helmets, harnesses, and avalanche transceivers, cramponing, roped travel, ice axe arrest practice, anchors and running belays, fixed line travel, and the basics of crevasse rescue.

Please make your own arrangements for the day's meals and a place to stay in the Ashford area for this evening.

The Mountaineering Day School

Over the next four days we ascend the mountain in an expedition style climb, establishing multiple camps to set ourselves up for our summit bid. During this time the group will learn and practice various mountaineering skills such as crevasse rescue, anchor placement, ice climbing, fixed line travel, and self rescue techniques among many others. Evening lectures in camp include discussion on mountain weather, medicine for mountaineering, altitude wellness, equipment and any requested topics that spark your interest.



Day 3

APPROACH TO CAMP 1 (either Glacier Basin or Inter Glacier)

Meet at 6:00 a.m. at Rainier BaseCamp. After an early team meeting a shuttle takes our group to the trailhead at the White River Campground (4,400').

We make the 3.3 mile hike, passing through beautiful mature forests, to Glacier Basin, or ascend a bit further to the base of Mt. Rainier's Inter Glacier, to establish camp. As we move towards camp, we work on the foundational skills that make us more efficient and capable climbers, including pressure breathing and using the rest step, dressing appropriately for the weather and workload, kicking steps and climbing in balance on snow, and efficient pacing that allows us to climb comfortably.

Approach To Camp 1



Day 4

CLIMB TO CAMP SCHURMAN

We ascend the Inter Glacier and climb over the flanks of Steamboat Prow onto the heavily crevassed Emmons Glacier as we move to our high camp, Camp Schurman, 9,440'. At Camp Schurman, we have a great arena to practice additional skills, such as proper placement of snow and ice anchors, crevasse rescue simulations, and ice climbing. In the afternoon we prepare for the summit bid.

Climb To Camp Schurman



Day 5

SUMMIT DAY

Today we put it all together and make our attempt on the summit. The Emmons-Winthrop Glacier route climbs the northern edge of the largest glacier in the lower 48 states, the Emmons Glacier. The spectacular 35-degree central ramp of the glacier offers a route by which we access the crevassed slopes of the upper mountain. We thread our way through these immense crevasses toward the summit of Mt. Rainier!

At 14,410 feet, Mt. Rainier is the highest point in Washington. The summit is spectacular with panoramic views from the Pacific to the eastern side of the Cascades when the weather is clear. A large crater dominates the summit, with steam rising out of the cavernous summit vents and the bare ground near the summit is often warm to the touch.

After reaching the summit, we descend back to Camp Schurman. The descent typically requires half the amount of time of the ascent but requires significant effort as we retrace our route down the mountain. The duration of the climb depends on many variables including snow conditions, the time of the year, the route conditions, the weather, and temperature among others. It is a long and challenging, but rewarding day!







Day 6

DESCENT

On the final day of the program we descend to the trailhead and return to Rainier BaseCamp in Ashford. After all the gear is unpacked, we gather as a team to celebrate our adventure.

The duration of the climb depends on many variables including snow conditions, the time of year, the route conditions, the weather during our climb, the temperature, etc. Those variables often affect our arrival time to Ashford, which might vary dramatically from climb to climb. For this reason we do not recommend scheduling an airline flight before midnight on the last day of your program.



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What You’ll Need

A list of required personal equipment accompanies every RMI program, and the thought process behind each item is much greater than simply “preparing for the worst and hoping for the best.” The list for your program takes into account factors such as: seasonality, route conditions, weather, elevation and more. As such, this list is framed within the broadest of contexts and is dynamic by its very nature. Therefore, certain variables (additions and/or subtractions) are inherent within such an all-encompassing list. We make every effort to recommend only top of the line clothing and technical gear and it is never our intention for you to buy or rent unnecessary gear.

The Guide Pick is an example of the listed item, giving you an idea of the material and specifications of the item. This exact item does not need to be purchased or used; however, any item you choose must have similar characteristics and performance abilities to the Guide Pick.

RMI Guides concur on the potential necessity of every item, thus every item on the list is required at gear check. However, guides may also have suggestions derived from their experience, some of which will vary from a given list. The guides’ recommendation whether to bring along or leave behind certain item(s) comes during the gear check, when the team first meets. Occasionally this recommendation comes at the expense of having previously purchased an item. If a guide presents the option of leaving behind certain item(s) on the list of required equipment, it is for a reason. Their recommendation may be related to the weather, route conditions, freezing level, perceived strength of the party, or desired pack weight.

Ultimately, there will never be a consensus for a “perfect” equipment list for an ascent. It does not exist because of the multitude of variables faced by climbers throughout the climb. Please follow this equipment list closely so that you will arrive for the gear check with all the required items. Keep in mind the list is not black and white, fine tuning will occur once you meet with your guide. Have a great climb!


  • Most of the required equipment is available for rent or purchase from our affiliate Whittaker Mountaineering. RMI climbers receive a 10% discount on new clothing and equipment items ordered from Whittaker Mountaineering when they use code RMI2018 at checkout. This offer excludes sale items, rentals, meal packages, and Feathered Friends.

Shop Your Equipment List // Rent new equipment for your climb

Equipment List

    • ICE AXE

      The length of your axe depends on your height. Use the following general mountaineering formula: up to 5'8", use a 65 cm axe; 5'8" to 6'2", use a 70 cm axe; and taller, use a 75 cm axe. If you hold the axe so that it hangs comfortably at your side, the spike of the axe should still be a few inches above the ground.

    • CRAMPONS

      The 10 to 12 point adjustable crampons designed for general mountaineering are ideal. We highly recommend anti-bot plates to prevent snow from balling up underfoot. Rigid frame crampons designed for technical ice climbing are not recommended.

    • AVALANCHE TRANSCEIVER

      A digital transceiver is preferred; analog will work as well. If you rent a transceiver, one set of new batteries will be provided.

    • BUFF / NECK GAITER / BALACLAVA

      One item for face protection is required. Our primary recommendation is the Buff. A neck gaiter or balaclava is also acceptable.

    • GLACIER GLASSES

      You will need protective sunglasses, either dark-lensed with side shields or full wrap-around frames. Almost all sunglasses block UV-A, UV-B and infrared rays adequately. Pay attention to the visible light transmission. The darkest lenses (glacier glasses) only allow approx. 6% visible light to get through, while lighter lenses (driving glasses) let in as much as 20+ %. A good rule of thumb is that if you can see the wearer’s pupils through the lenses, they are too light for sun protection at altitude.

    • GOGGLES

      Amber or rose-tinted goggles for adverse weather. On windy days, climbers, especially contact lens wearers, may find photochromatic lenses the most versatile in a variety of light conditions.

    • Each glove layer is worn separately as conditions change during the climb.

    • We recommend a minimum of five upper body layers, all of which can be used in conjunction with each other. Two of these should be insulating layers, one light and one medium, that fit well together. Today there are many different layering systems to choose from, including fleece, soft-shell, down and synthetic options.

    • We recommend a system of four layers, all of which can be used in conjunction with each other. Products which combine several layers into one garment, such as traditional ski pants, don’t work well as they don’t offer the versatility of a layering system.

    • MOUNTAINEERING BOOTS

      Insulated mountaineering boots with completely rigid soles are needed to climb Mt. Rainier. While both leather and plastic boots will work well, each has strengths and weaknesses. Plastic boots (or double boots - a boot with a removable insulated liner) will work all season. Appropriate leather boots (stiff-soled, insulated and designed to hold a crampon) are suitable only for warm weather climbs.
      The freezing level forecasted for the time of your climb will be the best guideline for which boot to wear.  A freezing level below 10,000' will dictate the use of plastic or double boots.  A freezing level above 10,000' will provide the option for either plastic boots, double boots or single leather boots. Freezing levels above 10,000' are only seen on a consistent basis between July 1 and August 15 on Mt. Rainier.  We strongly recommend plastic or double boots outside of this time frame.
      Whether leather or plastic, mountaineering boots are designed to remain stiff for kicking steps and working with crampons. To ensure that your feet do well, mountaineering boots must be comfortable right from the start. If renting boots, consider bringing personal orthotics or foot beds.

    • SUNSCREEN

      We recommend small tubes of SPF 15 or higher, which can be carried in pockets for easy access and to prevent freezing.

    • 2 - 3 WATER BOTTLES

      Hard-sided, screw-top, one-liter water bottles with wide mouths are required. Plastics made with high post-consumer recycled content and BPA-Free are recommended.

    • ZIP-LOCK BAG (1 GALLON)

      Please use the Zip-Lock as your personal trash bag.

    • CAMERA
    • TOOTHBRUSH
    • TOOTHPASTE
    • HAND SANITIZER(S)

      Personal size (2 oz.) bottle.

    • SEPTIC-GRADE TOILET PAPER
    • INSULATED MUG

      Stainless steel or plastics made with high post-consumer recycled content are recommended.

    • Purchase travel insurance.

    • Arrange lodging in Ashford.

    • Reserve rental equipment.

    • Arrange transportation to Ashford.

    • Be in the Best Shape of Your Life!


Provided Equipment

RMI provides the following equipment for your program: tents, group cooking gear, shovels, climbing ropes, and blue bags (for solid waste disposal).

Every guide on your climb will carry rescue equipment and a first aid kit. Each climb has two-way radios and a cell phone for emergency contact.

Print all Trip Details Print this Page
Print all Trip Details Print this Page
Print all Trip Details Print this Page

What is the Climber-to-Guide Ratio on this program?

Our climber-to-guide ratio is 2:1 on the Emmons Glacier route.

What is the maximum group size?

The maximum group size of any program anywhere on Mt. Rainier is 12 individuals, including guides.

 

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