Trip Report    

Alpine Scramble - Camp Muir & Anvil Rock

the classic leg-stretcher in typical summer conditions

  • Road suitable for all vehicles
  • Just about what one would expect at this time - snow from the parking lot, easy to walk up in boots and somewhat more tedious on the way down as the snow gets mushy from the heat and one sinks to mid-shin level. Bootpack more defined and compacted lower down, and progressively more diluted as you near Muir, and the excitement causes people to spread all over the mountain. No traction or flotation needed. Some of us wished they had snowshoes on the way down, but none of us myself included would have wanted to bother carrying them on the way up, even though conditioning was kind of the point. A human mind works in mysterious ways.

    Conditioning enthusiasts negotiating the mashed potato barrier:


Last-minute replacement for a cancelled Basic rock climb, posted  on Saturday morning for Sunday on a Memorial Day weekend, and miraculously brought to critical mass within a few hours by one student who has never seen Rainier and had Camp Muir as their New Year's resolution, and another who signed up for Rainier later this summer and needed conditioning. Everybody got out of it what they wanted, with the reported average of about 1.3-type fun.

These were the contestants:


And here's the TL;DR of the trip:


Not getting instant skin cancer from these things is always the crux, and I always get nervous about missing a spot, which I often do.

Anyway, we gathered at Longmire at 8:45am or so to consolidate cars, grabbed one of the last spots in a near-full lot in Paradise, started walking around 9:30am, and took about 6 hours to top out, going at a relaxed pace and taking generous breaks to rest, refuel, and take photos.


Manush topping out:


Obligatory family photo in Muir with the summit in the background:


What it looks like on the other side:


We took an hour to reinflate and started descending at 4:30pm or so, with a detour to tag Anvil Rock.

Obligatory family photo at the tip of Anvil Rock:


A mysterious boot pack on Cowlitz leading down to a crevasse where the aliens have opened a portal from the adjacent dimension:


Aliens beaming down canned soup and other supplies to Muir. Are the guiding companies also owned by lizard people? Who knows.


Final look on the way down, even nicer in the afternoon with some dramatic shadows:


The general sentiment was that the 3 to 3.5 liters of water per person wasn't enough, and Pebble Creek was not out yet enough to refill, so maybe 4 liters per person would be the more appropriate amount for a day like this unless one wanted to take the time to melt snow (tricky at Muir where the whole thing is one big toilet, and you can't exactly be sure what you're melting and putting into your mouth).

Down to the cars in about 2.5 hours.

We ancitipated getting back home before dark, but we ran into an accident by Alder cutoff, forcing us to reroute. Getting back home from these things always feels a bit sketchy as a fatigue kicks in, so I appreciated having a passenger carpooling with me for most of it.


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Ananth Maniam (ஆனந்த் மணியம்)
Ananth Maniam (ஆனந்த் மணியம்) says:
Dec 11, 2023 03:01 PM

"Aliens beaming down canned soup and other supplies to Muir. Are the guiding companies also owned by lizard people? Who knows."

It was baked beans and It was good!!