Courses & Activities

Courses & Activities

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New Course: Winter Trail Running Conditioning

The Foothills Trail Running Committee has just launched a new course: Winter Trail Running Conditioning.  Read more…

Andrew Okerlund, 20, becomes youngest to complete Washington’s Bulger List

On September 11, Andrew Okerlund became the youngest person to have completed the Bulger List: the highest 100 peaks in Washington. Not only did he climb all 100 peaks, but he managed to do so in a single summer – 85 days to be exact. He is the fifth person to have completed the Bulger List in one season and the second fastest, right after Jason Hardrath. Andrew's timing was impeccable as his college classes began only nine days later, making him the most interesting classmate in all of San Luis Obispo.  Read more…

Become a Ski or Snowboard Instructor at Meany Lodge

Our volunteers hosts at Meany Lodge are looking for several ski and snowboard instructors to join their wonderful team! Read more…

Walk Turkey's Lycian Way with Global Adventures

The first time I ever hiked on the Lycian Way, the oldest of Turkey's long trails, I was gobsmacked by the casual juxtaposition of ancient history and daily life.  Read more…

Sobriety: “Near Misses” in Basic and How to Find Support

It's 9:30pm. I’m on a glacier, on a private climb with my Small Instructional Group (SIG). I joined the Basic Alpine Climbing course in December, and now we are out on one of the best climbs of my life. It’s been beautiful all day, with amazing views, great company, and a feeling of comradery. We are crawling across a glacier in swirling mist and smoke.  The day’s warm weather has melted the top layer of the glacier, and the cool night air freezes it as we traverse. I am at the end of the rope, the last one to cross the glacier, and my crampons are skittering off the ice under my feet. Our climb is one misstep away from real danger. It will be a “near miss” if we make it off this steep slope, and it will be so much worse if I slip now. Read more…

Global Adventures | Shifting Perceptions of Adventure Travel

Trekking through Nepal’s villages for the first time many years ago, I felt like I was dropped into the pages of a National Geographic magazine. Everything was new to me. Read more…

Volunteer with Baker Lodge

Bring your work gloves and working spirit up to The Mountaineers Lodge at Mt. Baker!  Read more…

Retro Rewind | A Family’s First Climb of Mt. Rainier, August 1974

On the blue-skied morning of August 9, 1974, I steer our 1969 Ford van, “Bessie,” into the parking lot at Paradise. With me are my 16-year-old daughter Kim, my 14-year-old son Harold, and our fellow Mountaineer, 16-year-old Ken Cook. The four of us have completed all but one of our required climbs for Seattle’s Basic Climbing Course, and we’ve chosen Mt. Rainier as our graduation goal — a mountain none of us has summited before. Read more…

Impact Giving | Homegrown Expertise and Values-Based Publishing

As an independent nonprofit publisher, one of the goals of Mountaineers Books is to amplify the values of Mountaineers members. The editorial team has a finger on the pulse of our outdoor community and chooses projects that help bring readers to the frontlines of outdoor education. Read more…

Rose Vanderhoof, 78, Becomes Oldest Woman to Summit Mt. Rainier

On the morning of July 10, 2023, Rose Vanderhoof, 33-year Mountaineers member and avid outdoor enthusiast, became the oldest woman to summit Mt.Rainier at 78. She reached the summit with her son Chris Haugen, granddaughter Aleah Haugen, friend Mingrey Hildebrandt, and Mt. Tahoma Trails Association’s High Hut Manager Dr. Leyton Jump, who led the climb. This trip marked Rose’s ninth, and last, summit of Mt. Rainier.  Read more…

The Wonderful Burden of Backcountry Parenting

Our group erupted in peals of laughter as I smashed the pee-soaked diaper into the boulder with my boot, hoping to squish out some of the water weight. I peeled back the diaper in astonishment. Not a drop of pee had transferred to the rock. Read more…

Why You Should Sign Up for Navigation Courses

I thought I didn’t need a navigation course. As a frequent trail hiker who carried the Ten Essentials (paper map included), I was confident in my skills. I used my phone’s compass and altimeter apps to orient myself and figure out what I was looking at. When I went home, I reviewed my route on my paper maps. I had the Gaia app, and I always knew where I was and where I’d been. Read more…

How to Get Involved as a Lodge Host

Among The Mountaineers properties are our three rustic lodges: Baker, Meany, and Stevens. Each nestled close to their own mountain terrain, our lodges provide a restful atmosphere after a long day outdoors. Read more…

Remembering Mountaineer Scott Shafer

We are devastated to share that Scott Shafer has passed away. He was a widely beloved and respected member of The Mountaineers community as a climb leader, SIG leader, Super Volunteer, teacher, mentor, climbing partner, and friend to many during his 26-years as a Mountaineers member. He passed away on June 26, 2023, after a four month battle with cancer. Read more…

Learning to Backpack as an Adult

As a San Francisco-born and raised city girl, I used to dread backpacking. My love of the outdoors inspired me to move to the Pacific Northwest in 2016, but backpacking remained a beast I feared to tackle. Read more…

Summiting at Seventy: A septuagenarian's dedication to the alpine

Neal Kirby and his sprightly crew were the first to attempt Mt. Baker via Coleman Glacier last season after a washout added nearly ten miles to the climb. Being the first, they had the coveted and grueling responsibility of kick stepping and trail breaking through miles of fresh, untraveled snow. Black Buttes basecamp — their intended resting stop for the night — was just in sight when ominous clouds enveloped the mountain. With the warning flashes of fast-approaching lightning, no one was in the mood to become a hillside’s electrical conductor. They retreated to treeline and set up camp for the night. Read more…

Discover Your Backpacking Dreams and Unlock New Badges

Memorial Day has come and gone, and summer can't be too far behind, right? That means it's high time to get serious about planning your summer (and fall) backpack trips, and we can help. We have four Mountaineers backpacking award badges to offer ideas, inspiration, or perhaps a gentle nudge. Grab a friend or two or three and check them out, or join a Mountaineers backpack trip and leave the planning to us. Read more…

A Date with the Devil: Trip Report from Jackita Ridge-Devil’s Dome Loop, North Cascades

"The world is all the richer for having a devil in it, so long as we keep our foot upon his neck." - William James Read more…

Become a Global Adventures Leader, Next Training Nov 1

Are you an experienced Mountaineers activity leader who dreams of taking Mountaineers companions on multi-day adventures in far-flung places around North America and the wider world? Global Adventures leaders have taken groups skiing, snowshoeing, climbing, scrambling, backpacking, trekking, and day-walking in the desert Southwest, Alaska, the Rockies, the Alps, Patagonia, Peru, the Himalayas, the British Isles, New Zealand, Turkey, Jordan, the Amalfi Coast, and more.  The Global Adventures program may be the perfect place for you to live your travel dreams and take your trip planning and group leadership skills to a new level! Read more…

Volunteer With Seattle Mountain Workshops

The Mountaineers partners with Seattle-area youth serving organizations to deliver single or multi-day experiences designed to get youth outside, expose youth to transferable outdoor skills, and impart a desire to explore and conserve the outdoors. We call these programs Mountain Workshops. Through our Seattle Mountain Workshop partner programs, The Mountaineers provides over 1,100 youth experiences a year. We couldn’t provide these programs without the support of our amazing volunteer community! Read more…

Global Adventures | Streams in the Utah Desert

Raindrops began to fall as our group of Global Adventurers set off to hike Lower Calf Creek Falls in the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument. Prior to the trip, we had checked the weather forecast and knew rain was possible. As we had previously done a hike up the Virgin River Narrows, we were aware of the risks of flash floods and the appropriate precautionary measures to take while hiking. Although this trail was along a creek surrounded by greenery and red sand, it was not in a canyon and there was plenty of easily-accessible high ground near the trail should the creek abruptly rise. Read more…

Volunteers needed to help our Global Adventures Committee

Mountaineers Global Adventures (GA) gets members out on exciting multi-day adventures across North America and worldwide. We have several new leaders and trips in process, but keeping the program running smoothly and efficiently - including the increasing load of amazing trips to review and leaders looking to certify - requires more time than our current small committee can handle. We have identified a number of support roles that individually don't take much time but, if we could get willing volunteers to take them on, would assure that our program can continue to grow and thrive.  Read more…

How to Get Involved with Branch and Committee Leadership

Our mission to help people explore, conserve, learn about, and enjoy the lands and waters of the Pacific Northwest and beyond is driven and executed by over 2,000 highly skilled volunteers serving our community of over 16,000 members. Each year, our volunteers teach hundreds of courses, lead thousands of trips, and dedicate thousands of hours to regional stewardship and conservation advocacy efforts to help ensure our members can get outside safely and responsibly. All of this work happens through our seven branches. Read more…

Retro Rewind | Changing Climate, Changing Climbs

Alan Kearney and his posse of bell-bottom clad buddies are obsessed with buildering. All the rage in 1973, ‘buildering’ is the art of bouldering on urban infrastructure, or in lay terms, climbing up a building. Inspired by the emerging ice climbers in the Alps, Alan and crew want to take their new passion a step further by buildering on ice. They look for ice anywhere they can find it, and stumble across a 15-foot frozen wall behind a local meat market in the dark of night. Ice axes in hand, they anchor a top-rope to a fence post and begin to climb. To call them “ice climbers” would be an overstatement, but they have a blast regardless. Ice buildering, as it turns out, is just as fun as they had imagined. Read more…

Climb Like A Mother

A five-hundred-foot wall of loose rock loomed above me—the final five hundred feet between me and my first glacier summit, Clark Mountain. Someone on my climbing team drew a line through the air to map out our path. “Shouldn’t be more than thirty minutes,” our trip leader said. I flinched at the cheer in her voice. We’d left camp almost six hours earlier, and it felt like a lifetime away. My lungs and legs burned. I was hungry—no, thirsty. “Maybe I’ll just wait for you guys here,” I said, fishing for encouragement from our leader. “I think you can do it,” she said. “But it’s your decision.” Read more…

Endurance Training for Mountaineering

Mountains present many challenges that are out of our control, but of all the factors we can control, fitness is arguably the most important when it comes to our safety, success and enjoyment. Whether climbing a Cascade volcano or attempting an 8000-meter peak, mountaineering demands a varied set of fitness components. If you climb mountains, you’re an athlete. No matter what your level, training for the specific demands of climbing mountains can make for a more fun and even safer experience. Read more…

A Journey Through Cancer & Resilience

Given my strong family history, it’s not a matter of if I’ll get cancer, but when. Read more…

Make the most of winter by visiting Washington Sno-parks

Venturing into nature during winter can be challenging if you don’t know where to start. The cold and snow require more technical gear to keep you safe and warm in such low temperatures. But there are ways you can get outside, even if you are short on experience or gear. If you are curious about exploring Washington in winter but don’t know where you should go, check out one of Washington’s Sno-parks!  Read more…

How to Get Involved as a Trip Leader

 At The Mountaineers, leadership plays an integral part in every facet of our organization. We have a wide variety of leaders in many different roles - from Branch Treasurer, to Qualified Youth Leader, to Committee Chair. The term "leader" also specifically refers to a volunteer who has been vetted by an activity committee to lead a Mountaineers activity. These trips leaders have fulfilled the technical and interpersonal skill requirements included in our Club-wide Activity Standards. By leading hundreds of trips each month, trip leaders play a fundamental role within our organization.  Read more…

Engaging with History Through Urban Navigation

It seemed important two years ago to better know Seattle’s Central District (CD). After leading more than 50 Urban Night Walks (then known as “Night Hikes”) on Seattle Stairway Walks (2013) routes, a keener feel for the CD was in order. Nothing beats walking a neighborhood and soaking in the casual interactions with people and places. Active navigation with many turns sharpens attention to landmarks and the shape of the land. Read more…