10 Essential Questions: Vishal Vasudevan

Meet Vishal Vasudevan, a 2021 Basic Alpine Climbing grad who is happiest on Mount Rainier and loves meeting new climbing buddies through The Mountaineers.
The Mountaineers The Mountaineers
April 08, 2022

Each week we bring you a personal story from one of our members. For our member profile this week we talked to...

Name: Vishal Vasudevan
Hometown: Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
Member Since: October 2019
Occupation: Applied Scientist in Alexa AI, Amazon
Favorite Activities: Mountaineering, rock climbing, hiking, kayaking, skiing (inbounds and backcountry!), backpacking.

10 ESSENTIALS QUESTIONS

HOW DID YOU GET INVOLVED WITH THE MOUNTAINEERS?

I met a couple of people through Amazon email lists for hiking and did a car-to-car climb of Mount Adams! That was like my third or fourth proper hike in Washington and it was an amazing experience. The people who took me were part of The Mountaineers and told me about the Basic Climbing Course with the Everett Branch. It had been exactly what I was looking for, since I decided that I wanted to climb Rainier before the end of 2022 without being guided up. So I got into the BCC for 2020, which was cancelled due to COVID-19 but took it again in 2021 and graduated!

WHAT MOTIVATES YOU TO GET OUTSIDE WITH US?

The Mountaineers is very inclusive. I wouldn’t have been able to meet my climbing buddies if it weren’t for the Basic Climbing Course. I like the fact that everyone who takes the course comes back the following years to volunteer and give back to the community. This is probably one of the most compelling reasons for me to climb with The Mountaineers. Plus, you also get to meet more climbing buddies each year!

WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE OUTDOORS MEMORY?

My favorite memory is probably hanging out with fellow students and instructors after a day of rock climbing in Leavenworth for a course field trip at a campsite around a fire pit and just having a crazy time. I often feel like I don’t belong in this country due to various reasons, even though I’ve been here for so long, but being outside in nature with any group of people always makes me feel at home. This memory definitely keeps me going and I’m grateful to have had a chance to experience it.

WHO/WHAT INSPIRES YOU?

I’ve met so many climbers through The Mountaineers and other similar communities and every one of them is an inspiration. I come from a place back in India where there’s not a lot of exposure to outdoor activities. Seeing people from all walks of life climbing together inspires me and hopefully, one day, I can take some of this back to my home country and give back in a meaningful way!

AS A DONOR AND VOLUNTEER-SUPPORTED ORGANIZATION, THE MOUNTAINEERS IS BASED ON COMMUNITY SUPPORT. HOW HAVE YOU PAID IT FORWARD, OR HOW HAVE YOU BENEFITED FROM SOMEONE ELSE PAYING IT FORWARD?

I've helped donate to The Mountaineers as I know that this helps provide scholarships to those who are in need of support to fulfill their passions.

WHAT DOES ADVENTURE MEAN TO YOU?

Adventure to me just means getting out there and having fun with friends without being worried or burdened by the fears or concerns of everyday life. It’s an escape and makes me happy!

LIGHTNING ROUND

Sunrise or sunset? Sunrise
Smile or game face? Smile
What's your 11th Essential? Almond snickers
What’s your happy place? Mount Rainier
Post-adventure meal of choice? Gobi manchurian - indo-Chinese dish
If you could be a rockstar at any outdoor activity overnight, what would it be? Ice climbing


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