Courses & Activities

All posts

Car Camping and Backpacking Gear Comes to the Gear Library!

Our new Gear Library is committed to helping the next generation explore the outdoors. Since launching in August 2018, we have partnered with local youth-serving agencies to offer free access to outdoor gear to help increase access to our wild places.  We are excited to announce that car camping and backpacking gear are now included in our gear offerings! Attend our upcoming Gear Library orientation on April 8 to learn more. Read more…

Southcentral Alaska Goal Hikes

Hiking goals in Alaska are as diverse as the people you meet out on the trail; they come in all shapes, sizes and ambitions. But one thing is pretty universal: The ideal of an end-of-summer “goal hike” that you train for all summer long. Read more…

Did You Know? The John Day Fossil Beds National Monument

The John Day Fossil Beds National Monument is an exciting and interesting trip largely due to its uniquely well-preserved fossilized records of Cenozoic life. The evidence of past life is observed in the geologic strata, hills, valleys, and rock terraces of this incredibly spot in Eastern Oregon. Read more…

Trail Talk | Reflections on a Life Reared Outdoors

I was born in Bridgeport, Connecticut; the largest city in one of the country’s most densely populated states. Located 50 miles east of New York City, Bridgeport was an industrial powerhouse from the late 1800s to just after World War II. The city attracted waves of immigrants and was, and still is, incredibly diverse. I lived in the city’s Little Italy neighborhood where Italian and Yiddish were freely spoken. I remember a lot of little old ladies in black dresses. My parents were not outdoorspeople, nor were my friends. My neighborhood of tightly-packed two and three family homes was no Walden Pond. Read more…

Top 10 Trip Reports - March 2019

Spring has sprung! Can't you tell? T-shirts and sandals are trickling back into our lives, people are sitting outside just for the fun of it, and all of a sudden it makes sense to buy sunscreen again. Read more…

PCE Communications Quarterly - March 2019

Progressive Climbing Education (PCE) is a strategic initiative to advance our Mountaineers climbing programs, make our suite of volunteer-led Climbing Programs more fun for volunteers to run, easier to recruit volunteers for, more attractive to new climbers (especially those coming out of the gym), and more advanced for our highly-skilled volunteers and students. This quarterly communication is intended to provide regular updates about each committees' projects, offer transparency, and ensure that all branches are able to provide feedback and input to proposed changes to the climbing programs. Read more…

Leader Spotlight: Gordie Swartzman

For our Leader Spotlight this month we talked to Gordie Swartzman, a naturalists leader with the Seattle Branch who encourages new leaders to lead out of their passion! Read more…

Language Matters: Let's Stop Using the Slang Word For Carabiner

Many people use an abbreviated slang word in climbing without consideration or afterthought. This word is frequently used alongside other words like rope, harness, and belay. If you search on the Internet for this word, the first 5-10 results would reference the term to describe a piece of standard climbing gear. Countless climbing websites recognize the slang word as a standard, and our basic climbing students are even indoctrinated with its common use. And all of us are wrong. Read more…

A Beautiful Partnership: Mountaineers Adventure Club & Seattle Climbing Team

One of the core elements of our mission at The Mountaineers is to engage future Mountaineers. Many of our members may not know about everything we do to foster youth involvement in the outdoors, and we hear that some people are surprised to learn about our robust youth program, which has three distinct parts: outreach programs (like Mountain Workshops and our Gear Library), school break camps, and year-round outdoor clubs. One of these year-round programs is The Mountaineers Adventure Club (MAC). Designed for teens aged 14-18, MAC includes a wide variety of outdoor activities and focuses on developing strong alpine climbing skills.  Read more…

Rock Climbing Anchors - Bolted Routes

The weather is warming and many climbers are moving from gyms to outdoor rock. Most will be working on sport climbs with bolted anchors. Here's a refresher on the correct way to clip into bolts excerpted from Chapter 6, "Sport Climbing and Bolted Anchors" in the new book,  Rock Climbing Anchors, 2nd Ed., by Topher Donahue and Craig Luebben. Read more…