Safety Stories

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My Surf Kayak Got Trapped by Breaking Surf

As Mountaineers, we are committed to learning from our experiences. We examine every incident that happens on a Mountaineers trip for opportunities to improve the ways we explore and teach. Our volunteer safety committee reviews every incident report and picks a few each month to share as examples of ‘Lessons Learned’. The trip report below describes what happened on this trip, in the leader’s own words, and outlines the lessons the leader has identified. In some cases, we offer additional key learnings from the incident. Read more…

Mountaineering Judgement in the Age of COVID-19

In our Mountaineers climbing and alpine scrambling courses, an essential skill we are always trying to instill in our students is what I call “mountaineering judgement.” To be safe outdoors and in the mountains, one always needs to be aware of - and alert to - risk factors, changing conditions, and issues with other party members. Because of this, courses in activities like climbing, scrambling, and kayaking could just as easily be called risk management courses. Everything students learn in these courses reduces risk and makes the activity safer. Read more…

Trail Edge Gives Way, Backpacker Falls 30 Feet

As Mountaineers, we are committed to learning from our experiences. We examine every incident that happens on a Mountaineers trip for opportunities to improve the ways we explore and teach. Our volunteer safety committee reviews every incident report and picks a few each month to share as examples of ‘Lessons Learned’. The trip report below describes what happened on this trip, in the leader’s own words, and outlines the lessons the leader has identified. In some cases, we offer additional key learnings from the incident. Read more…

Safety Stories | A Fall on Cutthroat Peak

Everything about this climb was perfect, until it wasn’t. Read more…

50 Foot Leader Fall on Concord Tower

As Mountaineers, we are committed to learning from our experiences. We examine every incident that happens on a Mountaineers trip for opportunities to improve the ways we explore and teach. Our volunteer safety committee reviews every incident report and picks a few each month to share as examples of ‘Lessons Learned’. The trip report below describes what happened on this trip, in the leader’s own words, and outlines the lessons the leader has identified. In some cases, we offer additional key learnings from the incident. Read more…

Change Creek Waterfall Rappel – Employing Best Practices After a Slip

As Mountaineers, we are committed to learning from our experiences. We examine every incident that happens on a Mountaineers trip for opportunities to improve the ways we explore and teach. Our volunteer safety committee reviews every incident report and picks a few each month to share as examples of ‘Lessons Learned’. The trip report below describes what happened on this trip, in the leader’s own words, and outlines the lessons the leader has identified. In some cases, we offer additional key learnings from the incident. Read more…

West McMillan Spire - Slipped, Slid, Bounced, Finally Arrested

As Mountaineers, we are committed to learning from our experiences. We examine every incident that happens on a Mountaineers trip for opportunities to improve the ways we explore and teach. Our volunteer safety committee reviews every incident report and picks a few each month to share as examples of ‘Lessons Learned’. The trip report below describes what happened on this trip, in the leader’s own words, and outlines the lessons the leader has identified. In some cases, we offer additional key learnings from the incident. Read more…

The Time a Search & Rescue Member Got "Rescued" By Her Team

In April 2019, my friend Becca and I were antsy to start backpacking season. We were excited to escape urbanite life for a couple of days and hit the trails. We opted to head out on Baker Lake Trail in the North Cascades. The trail is a lower-elevation trail, perfect for early season backpacking when many trails are still covered in snow. Read more…

Commonwealth Basin Snowshoe - The Fall Looked Minor

As Mountaineers, we are committed to learning from our experiences. We examine every incident that happens on a Mountaineers trip for opportunities to improve the ways we explore and teach. Our volunteer safety committee reviews every incident report and picks a few each month to share as examples of ‘Lessons Learned’. The trip report below describes what happened on this trip, in the leader’s own words, and outlines the lessons the leader has identified. In some cases, we offer additional key learnings from the incident. Read more…

I Fractured My Wrist By Way Of A "FOOSH"

As Mountaineers, we are committed to learning from our experiences. We examine every incident that happens on a Mountaineers trip for opportunities to improve the ways we explore and teach. Our volunteer safety committee reviews every incident report and picks a few each month to share as examples of ‘Lessons Learned’. The trip report below describes what happened on this trip, in the leader’s own words, and outlines the lessons the leader has identified. In some cases, we offer additional key learnings from the incident. Read more…