Mountaineer Magazine

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Snow Goat Skimo: Supporting the Boom in Uphill Ski Racing

It must be nice, being a mountain goat. To move through the mountains with speed and grace, inspiring fear, respect, and admiration in all who lay eyes on you. With gravitydefying climbing skills and a legendary beard, mountain goats are untouchable. Read more…

New Beginnings: A Place To Be Yourself

17 miles per hour. That’s the speed of the rope tow at Meany Lodge when it’s in third gear. Touted as the fastest, longest, legally operated tow west of the Mississippi, the Meany Tow whisks skiers 500ft up an east-facing glade deep in the heart of Stampede Pass. The angle is gradual at first, but then steepens midway, creating a small gap between the rope and the slope. Regulars will tell you they routinely see small children lift off the ground, carried for a dozen or so feet before touching back down on the high side. They love it. Read more…

Six Months in Nine Days: Life as an Intense Basic Student

Walking backward, on the roof of the Seattle Program Center, I made my way to the edge. I had doublechecked my rappel system: My anchor, rope, belay device, autoblock, and harness all looked good. Before I unclipped my personal anchor, my instructor gave my system a final sign off. Read more…

Rebuilding History & Hearts

"What are those?” I asked, pointing to the four hikers who had pulled off the trail to don microspikes and crampons. It was a frigid, late Saturday in February 2015 on Mount Pilchuck. At this point in my outdoor career I was a sport climber, a casual hiker (at best), and had only backpacked a handful of times. You can imagine my reaction to seeing people take these grizzly-bear like claws from their packs and attach them to their boots. Read more…

Impact Giving | How Scholarships Strengthen Community

On Tuesday, December 3, 2019, The Mountaineers will participate in #GivingTuesday and once again all donations received on this day will directly support Mountaineers scholarships. Read more…

Retro Rewind | Mastering McKinley

Charles “Charlie” Crenchaw was a member of The Mountaineers and the first African American to summit Denali. He did so on a Mountaineers expedition and Charlie wrote a report of the adventure for our 1965 Annual to commemorate the trip. The expedition, was exemplary for a variety of reasons, and Charlie’s recap has its fair share of excitement. Read more…

Silencing the Noise: Climbing Through an Anxiety Disorder

You’re climbing on a busy day at the crag, surrounded by incessant chatter and constant commotion. Sometimes you find this noise pleasantly engaging, but today you just want to tell everyone to be still – be quiet. The voices follow as you start your climb, continuing to echo in your brain even as you climb higher. They seem to be demanding your attention, and suddenly it feels like your mind is fighting between listening to the voices and trying to block them out. But the problem is that both options leave you unable to focus on the present moment. The “what-ifs” start to seep into your head, and before you know it, you fall. Read more…

Becoming a Commuter Naturalist

A shadow darkens the window – a heartbeat of dim sunlight. I look up to see a large bird, a raptor, glide against the sky, wings stretched wide to catch a breeze. Squinting against the light, I catch the distinctive white head and tail before the eagle flicks a few feathers, banks right, and disappears. The train continues racing north to home while my gaze falls back to the shoreline looking for birds and animals, my little time with nature on my commute. Read more…

Outdoor Leadership: Everyone Has A Place in the Mountains

Forest McBrian is an IFMGA Mountain Guide with over 15 years of experience in the mountains. Among his many notable achievements, in 2017, Forest and his partner Trevor Kostanich embarked on a 34-day ski traverse from Snoqualmie Pass to Canada. Forest instructs for the American Mountain Guide Association, and guides throughout the Pacific Northwest. Read more…

NOLS Leadership: An Interview with John Abel

John Abel has been a NOLS instructor since 1991, and has a Masters in Leadership and Organizational Development from the Leadership Institute of Seattle. Since 2010, he has worked primarily for NOLS Professional Training, teaching leadership seminars for NOLS Instructors, and facilitating various leadership training programs for NOLS organizational clients.  Read more…