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Backpackers' Pajama Parties Back by Popular Demand

We're back! The Foothills Backpacking Committee's Backpackers' Pajama Parties helped many of us stay sane during the early days of quarantine, and many of you have told us you want more. We're happy to announce our 2021 lineup, sure to keep you entertained while we wait for the summer season to arrive. Read more…

Outside Insights | Taking Care of the Basics: Setting your students up for successful learning

Volunteer-led outdoor education is the heart and soul of The Mountaineers. Our instructors are passionate about sharing their love of the outdoors with others, and many of our students choose to play an important role in our community as volunteer instructors after graduation. Read more…

Safety Stories: Our Ice Pitch Top-Rope Anchor Would Have Been Worrisome, Had We Known

As Mountaineers, we are committed to learning from our experiences. We examine every incident that happens on a Mountaineers trip for opportunities to improve the ways we explore and teach. Our volunteer safety committee reviews every incident report and picks a few each month to share as examples of ‘Lessons Learned’. The trip report below describes what happened on this trip, in the leader’s own words, and outlines the lessons the leader has identified. In some cases, we offer additional key learnings from the incident. Read more…

Backpacking Courses Spring 2021

Although we’re still in the heart of winter, it won’t be too long before the skies begin to lighten and we’re planning our spring and summer adventures. Get a head-start on your summer plans now by signing up for one of our upcoming introduction to backpacking courses, an excellent way to develop your skills and confidence on the trails before heading out on your first over-night or multi-night trip. Read more…

Join Mountains to Sound Greenway for an MLK Day of Service

On January 18,  the Foothills Conservation Committee is collaborating with Mountains to Sound Greenway to sponsor a day of service in celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. (MLK) Day. This is a great opportunity to get outside and provide cleanup to the parks and public lands that we all love, use, and recreate in.  Read more…

What's in a name?

Language is powerful. We use a string of characters or words to attempt to capture history, context, meaning, intent, and often, emotion. Language is subject to personal interpretation -  most context-laden words rarely share the exact same meaning from one individual to the next. That’s what makes language imperfect.  Read more…

Conservation Currents | At Capacity: Getting outside in the age of COVID-19

Like many aspects of our lives, 2020 has been a roller coaster of a year for public lands. During the initial weeks of the coronavirus pandemic, public lands in Washington State closed as a result of Governor Inslee’s ”Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order. Read more…

Mountaineers Programming and the Coronavirus

On February 28, 2020, the Center for Disease Control announced the likelihood that coronavirus (COVID-19) would spread in US communities. Since then, The Mountaineers  has been carefully tracking the recommendations of public health agencies, and our hearts go out to those who have been affected. The health and safety of our community is our top priority and we will diligently implement recommended actions while doing everything we can to sustain our mission and operations. We will continue to update this blog as the situation develops. Read more…

Webinar Series - Giving Structured Feedback

It is an all-too-familiar feeling for many of us. You just watched one of your peers fumble a skill demonstration. Or maybe you've noticed a student who is over-participating, not leaving at room for others to ask questions or share knowledge. You want to provide feedback to get things back on track, but you're worried about how it will be received. What do you do? Read more…

Trip Report: Windy Ridge at Mt. St. Helens

Mt. St. Helens is an exciting place to explore; a true-to-life science experiment, fun for both children and adults alike. My hiking partner and I decided to hike and explore the seldom traveled Windy Ridge Side of Mt. St. Helens. Here you get an up-close and personal view of the destruction done by the lateral blast that rolled over the landscape on May 18, 1980. Read more…