Mountaineer Magazine

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Confessions of an Old Scrambling Student

I looked around at the others, perhaps 75 in all, and saw that almost everyone was quite a bit younger than me. One exception was an instructor who looked like he might at least hail from the same part of the century. The lines on his clean-shaven face were well-defined and weathered in a good way. Read more…

Youth Outside | Growing Up with Nature

A little past noon, the younger members of our group started getting hungry. One of the parents found a small rock outcropping with a nice view for a bite, and I unburdened myself of my backpack and sat down next to my father. Taking in the early autumn air of the Appalachians, we ate the sandwiches he’d prepared earlier that morning. Read more…

Three Generations Outside: A Love Letter to my Sons and Granddaughters

Our small town in rural Pennsylvania didn’t have a community center. Or a swimming pool. The only thing for us children to do when we weren’t in school was hike the surrounding hills and mountains. My family was poor, so we never went on vacations that didn’t involve a tent or camper. My strongest and most vivid memories growing up are from experiences in the outdoors. Spending time in the forests and mountains is as natural to me as breathing. Read more…

Outside Insight | An Important How To: Create Inclusive Experiences

The Mountaineers annual Leadership Conference is dedicated to the ongoing development of our volunteer leaders. Discussions on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) have been incorporated since its inception in 2014, and we’ve strived to include a wide array of presenters and sessions centered on inclusive and equitable programs. At the 2018 conference, we chose to introduce a full track focused on DEI, an exciting first for this event. Read more…

Voices Heard | Changing the Face of Mountaineering

With just three days left in his 23-day, reality television ordeal, Don Nguyen was the very embodiment of the show’s title, “Naked and Afraid.” Cold rain and winds pounded and compromised his primitive shelter in the Namibian wilderness. As he shivered uncontrollably, in the buff and borderline hypothermic, he pondered an ending that he ultimately refused to accept. 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…

A New Program Center for our Kitsap Branch

A revamped building in Bremerton is set to transform how The Mountaineers Kitsap Branch teaches and trains students. But before we get too far into the future, the story of our new home warrants a look at the past. Read more…

Global Adventures | A Lucky Find in Italy

A few years ago, I took a group of Nordic skiers to the Dolomites in Italy. One couple in my group was looking forward to celebrating a significant anniversary in Florence and Rome following our ski adventures. We had been in the Dolomiti for about 10 days and, on this day, had enjoyed a rigorous mountain ski. After lunch and a ski back to a side valley where our path crossed a road, the anniversary couple decided to take the rest of the day off and bus back to the hotel. Read more…

Retro Rewind | Into the Archives

In the first few decades of The Mountaineers existence, members planned long, yearly excursions into the wilderness every summer and winter. On these annual trips, our members ventured into the mountains to explore and discover first ascents on unmapped peaks. In 1912, The Mountaineers spent July 20 - August 10 traveling around Mt. Rainier. Read more…

Nature's Way | Earthquakes and Tsunamis: The Cascadia Subduction Zone

On February 28, 2001, a friend was being prepped for varicose vein surgery at the Seattle VA Hospital. He was given a mild sedative and began experiencing what he thought was vertigo when his surgeon announced that the procedure was cancelled and he needed to get dressed and leave the hospital immediately. An earthquake later known as the Nisqually, of a magnitude 6.8-7.0 had struck. My friend was disappointed at the postponement of his operation at the time, but it could have been worse. Read more…