Mountaineer Magazine

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50 Years of Wilderness: the past and future of our protected lands

As Mountaineers, we have accessed and experienced some of the most remote areas of this region. Close your eyes and think about where you were on you favorite or most recent trip outdoors. Chances are this trip brought you to some sort of protected land, quite possibly to a federally designated “Wilderness” area, such as the Olympic Wilderness, the San Juan Wilderness, Mount Rainier National Park, Glacier Peak Wilderness, Boulder River Wilderness and more.  Read more…

Expedition Denali: Bridging the Gap

We have come a long way from the early 1900’s when The Mountaineers advised women to “carry heavy veils to shield their faces from sunburn when on snow” and men used greasepaint to protect their skin. Today, we all wear the same clothes and use the same gear, but you are still more likely to see a man climbing a mountain than a woman. However, the gender gap is decreasing, and the accomplishments of female climbers are now celebrated as proudly as those of their male counterparts. Read more…

Grizzlies in the North Cascades: Unbearable to ponder or barely a concern?

Like my first love, I’ll never forget my first grizzly bear encounter. It was highly emotional and intense. Short-lived too, but forever etched into my mind. But unlike my first love, I wish to continue my relationship with grizzly bears into the future. Read more…

Alex Honnold - A World-view Climber

Alex Honnold was on an academic and expected track – at least for the type of lifestyle he grew up in. Before his international climbing career, he was at the top of his class in a prestigious high school in Sacramento, California. Berkeley was his next step, with engineering as his major. Read more…

An Unexpected Path to Conservation

I grew up blind to the American legacy of public lands — an inheritance for all people, regardless of background, language, or creed. I get shivers to think of what my life would be without the rush of climbing mountains in the North Cascades, diving into alpine lakes in the Grand Teton backcountry, or having Elysian Park as a family gathering place for our “Carne Asadas,” our version of a family BBQ. I found my soul in the wild and the heart of my passion within my family in the city of Los Angeles.  Read more…

Balance and Coordination - One-leg deadlift

One of the most important exercises in my own outdoor-conditioning strength program, and indeed in the program of many hundreds of mountaineers I've trained over the past fifteen years, is the one-legged deadlift. Whether you are 8 or 88, you need balance, coordination, and strength. To go faster uphill on foot, include the one-legged deadlift in your program. It will help your glutes, quadriceps, hamstrings, and balancing muscles around the feet, ankles, hips and knees. Read more…

A Climbing Evolution: 40 years with The Mountaineers

We’re aware some people perceive us as an ‘old guy’s club’. And while that may have been the case 60 years ago when we were inventing methods of climbing the highest and most remote peaks, it just isn’t true anymore. Read more…

The Subtle Joys of Autumn

Autumn in the Pacific Northwest can be a circle of sun and ice. Mornings of frost-coated leaves melt into blazing sunny days. You may start the day piling on layers of fleece and down, only to find yourself in one short-sleeve shirt by mid-afternoon.  Read more…

The Fall

Thursday, July 12, 2012. 

It could have been the last day of my life. In fact, I’m still a little surprised it wasn’t. There are certain events that occur in one’s life, to which it’s hard not to attribute supernatural meaning. It being the day before Friday the 13th, I’ve thought perhaps that Thursday was contaminated by the misfortune of its notorious neighbor. I’ve also caught myself half-believing in guardian angels, and, while contemplating other close calls, have wondered whether the Universe is out to kill me, and if so, why it hasn’t succeeded.  Read more…

Conservation Currents | Protecting the Outdoor Experience

For over a century, The Mountaineers has inspired conservation and stewardship of our public lands through our outdoor education programs and books. Today, we build on this tradition by taking responsibility for protecting the places that inspire, excite, and challenge us. The Mountaineers is uniquely positioned to define and grow the modern conservation movement by providing powerful outdoor experiences that enable people to gain special connections to these places and the desire to protect them. We instill stewardship and Leave-No-Trace wilderness ethics through the educational components of our courses and provide opportunities to learn and engage in conservation issues – practices that ignite passion and action in current and future generations of conservationists. Read more…