10 Essential Questions: Rikki Hinz

Meet Rikki, a Washington local who feels most at home when she's outside and finds her inspiration in the people and places of the Pacific Northwest.
Kristina Ciari Kristina Ciari
July 10, 2015

For our member profile this week we talked to Rikki Hinz, a Washington local who feels most at home when she's outside. She has a great instagram feed too - check her out @rikkirachelle

Name: Rikki-Rachelle Hinz
Hometown: Des Moines, WA
Member Since: November 2013
Occupation: Assistant Preschool Teacher/Advocate
Favorite Activities: Hiking, backpacking, rock climbing, and mountaineering. 

10 Essential Questions

How did you get involved with The Mountaineers?

After graduating from the UW I was in search of a challenge apart from academia. Little did I know that I would find a completely new lifestyle! I started rock climbing and quickly fell in love with the level of focus and growth it provided. But I wanted more. I saw Mt. Rainier everyday looming in the distance. Its presence was enough to inspire me to turn to glaciers. Luckily a poster at a local climbing gym for the basic alpine climbing course caught my eye. Fast forward a year and I’ve taken two more courses through the Everett Mountaineers and instruct with them when I can.  

What motivates you to get outside with us?

The outdoors was my first home. I still have a hard time answering the “hometown” question, as “home” was often not a single, stable location. When I’m outdoors, I feel at home. For me, this is motivation enough to get outside.

The Mountaineers is a wonderful organization that affords people the agency to get outside in a meaningful way. I appreciate the weight placed on safety and skill building, and am continually impressed by the work of countless volunteers within The Mountaineers. The quality instruction and inspiration I receive from The Mountaineers motivates me to stay outside with them. 

What's your favorite Mountaineers memory?

My favorite Mountaineers memory was just about a year ago. I was kicking my crampons into the Southeast Couloir of South Early Winter Spire, high-daggering my ice ax into the steep slope and looking around to a sea of snow capped summits in every direction - the white and blue of the sky rivaled the white and blue of the expansive alpine landscape that is Washington pass. It was my very first Mountaineers climb and I couldn’t have asked for a better experience. My perma-grin stuck with me for a few days and set the stoke for the season. 

Who/What inspires you?

I see inspiration in a lot of people and places. The sheer power of the alpine environment to make me feel small inspires me. The challenge of remaining present on technical terrain inspires me. The instructors and climb leaders of The Mountaineers inspire me. Fellow students who push themselves outside of their comfort zone to learn and grow inspire me. 

What does adventure mean to you?

Taking the risk to liberate yourself from the limitations you and others have created for yourself is adventure, to me.   

Lightning Round

Sunrise or sunset? Sunrise.
Smile or game face? My smile IS my game face!
Superpower? These quads.
Post-adventure meal of choice? Something fresh to offset the consumption of Mountain House dinner and packaged bars.
If you could be a rock star at any outdoor activity overnight, what would it be? Speed-ascent mountaineering.

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Louie Coglas
Louie Coglas says:
Fri, Jul 10, 2015 9:17 PM

Great instructing on the IGC feildtrip.