Trek to Everest Base Camp With Madison Mountaineering

We are just one month shy of our virtual gala’s online bidding site going live. For your second sneak peek at some of the amazing packages available for auction, we bring you an Everest Base Camp trek, a priceless painting by a renowned mountaineer, car camping essentials for the summer, bird watching in the Skagit Valley, and a guided oyster experience. Bidding will occur online from July 17-23.
The Mountaineers The Mountaineers
June 17, 2020

In case you haven’t read yet, last week we announced that our July 23 gala is going virtual. As with many organizations navigating the effects of COVID-19 we’ve had to adapt to new modes of operation, and moving our auction online is one of them. It’s come with a learning curve, but we’ve already noticed many benefits: you have more time to bid on your favorite items, it opens up opportunities for everyone to participate, and we have the opportunity to further promote businesses that have donated to the auction.

Bidding in our live and silent auction will be open from July 17-23. As a reminder, be sure to pre-register so that you can be first in line to place your bids!

For your second sneak peek of the auction, we’re excited to showcase a trek to the tallest mountain on earth, a painting by an acclaimed mountaineering artist and author, incredible gear for your summer camping, a member-led bird watching trip, and a guided oyster experience by a sustainable shellfish company. And to sweeten the deal, each package also includes at least one title from our publishing division, Mountaineers Books, in honor of our 60th anniversary!

Mount Everest Base Camp Trek WIth Madison Mountaineering: April 2-18, 2021

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Follow in the footsteps of legends as you trek to the fabled base camp of Mount Everest’s South Col route. The expert staff of Madison Mountaineering – one of the world’s leaders in high-altitude guided climbing – provide a completely dialed-in experience. 

Along the way to Mount Everest’s base camp, you will have the opportunity to see colorful Buddhist and Hindu traditions in the various mountain villages lined with fluttering prayer flags, stupas, and gompa monasteries – including the Pangboche Monastery, where you and the season’s Everest climbing team will receive a blessing from the High Lama of the Khumbu Valley. Once reaching Everest Base Camp at 17,800 ft. you will see the famous Khumbu Ice Fall and the challenging first segment of the route. Afterward, near the highest village of Gorak Shep, you will ascend Kala Pattar for the striking view of the summit of Mount Everest, before starting the return journey to Lukla and onward back to Kathmandu.

This one-person package includes accommodations in Kathmandu, round trip airfare from Kathmandu to Lukla, park and porter fees, and all accommodations and meals while on the trek. In addition, you will be outfitted with Madison Mountaineering logoed gear, including a Mountain Hardwear Ghost Whisper jacket, MiiR camp cup, Buff, and hat. For the plane ride, we are also including a copy of Leaf Whittaker’s memoir, My Old Man and the Mountain, published by Mountaineers Books.

Mount Shuksan Watercolor Painting by dee Molenaar

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Dee Molenaar (June 21, 1918 – January 19, 2020) was an international mountaineering legend, Pacific Northwest hero, climber, author, geologist, and artist. His contributions to the outdoors are immeasurable. Throughout his life, Dee demonstrated great generosity, getting as much satisfaction from helping others achieve their mountain goals as he did from achieving his own. A 79-year Mountaineers member, Dee’s resume includes pioneering routes on Mount Rainier and completing the first ascent of Canadian peak Mount Kennedy with Senator Robert Kennedy.

An essential item in Dee’s pack was always a box of watercolor paints. He painted mountain landscapes from Death Valley to Mount Rainier. While hunkered down by a severe storm on K2 in 1953, he painted the highest-altitude watercolor in history. His artwork and maps have appeared in books, exhibits, and art shows all over the world.

Now is your chance to celebrate Dee’s monumental life and take home a piece of his mountaineering legacy: a 12x16 inch watercolor painting of the glaciated massif in North Cascades National Park, Mount Shuksan. This original painting was first purchased from Dee in the ’70s and has been kept in excellent condition. The opportunity to own Dee’s paintings are becoming more of a rarity these days, so don’t miss this chance to add a priceless piece of art to your personal collection (along with a copy of his book, The Challenge of Rainier). TSUGA Fine Art and Framing is also contributing a $50 framing gift certificate to help preserve the painting.

Special thanks to the Boulton Family.

Car Camping Champion

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The campgrounds are just waiting to reopen, and there are so many spots calling your name - to Cougar Rock in Mount Rainier, or Kalaloch in Olympic National Park, or Newhalem Creek in the North Cascades. The possibilities abound in Washington state, and we’ve put together the perfect package to help you be prepared.

First, you’ll need a pair of sunglasses, but not just any sunglasses. The Spy Optic Discord 50/50 Sunglasses are durable, lightweight, and stylishly crafted with a low profile semi-rimless frame.

Next, load all of your food and refreshments into your new YETI Tundra Haul (desert tan), the toughest cooler on two wheels. To accompany this are two 18oz YETI Ramblers (river green and clay) and a stylish Boomer 4 Dog Bowl (river green) to keep your pup hydrated too!

Once settled into your site, bust out your new BioLite FirePit. With a capacity for up to four firewood logs, you can now enjoy the warmth, smell, crackle, and feel of a wood campfire without any of the smoke thanks to their unique airflow technology. Then lift the fuel rack and toss in some charcoal to transform the pit into a portable hibachi-style grill. Adjust the flames manually or remotely with the Bluetooth settings.

Mountaineers Books is also including their book Dirty Gourmet to help you eat well outdoors. The book is packed with more than 120 deliciously modern recipes for day trips, car camping, and backcountry adventures.

Guided Bird Watching With Dave Parent

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Dave Parent is a small animal veterinarian who treats wildlife and has led many Audubon and private trips in Skagit County for over 30 years. Now is your chance to grab five friends and learn from this passionate birder!

During this full-day field trip (roughly 9am to 5pm), you will meet with Dave near Edison, WA, and travel by vehicle and foot to observe snow geese, swans, ducks, eagles, falcons, hawks, owls, and many other birds. No experience is necessary and the walking will be on level surfaces.

To help prepare you for the trip Mountaineers Books is including Photography Birds, which provides some of the best guidance for capturing the beauty and splendor of our feathered friends.

A Guided Oyster Experience With Baywater Shellfish

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Chosen by the likes of chefs Brendon McGill and Renee Erickson, Baywater Shellfish has been growing their iconic Baywater Sweets for the tastiest restaurants in Seattle since 1989. Led by a UW marine biology professor, this Hood Canal farm cares deeply about the product they grow and the part they play in climate change.

This package offers an evening of oysters for a dinner party of 15, giving you and your closest friends the chance to enjoy some of the highest quality shellfish in our region. Baywater Shellfish will provide fifteen to twenty dozen oysters, two shuckers, mignonette, and lemons.

In addition, Mountaineers Books is including two titles that offer insight into the natural world: We Are Puget Sound and Earth Almanac. Both books will give a wide range of natural history, calls to environmental action, citizen science opportunities, and so much more.


We look forward to commencing on this virtual journey with you over the next several weeks and hope these sneak peeks get you excited for the incredible gala we have planned. For more information about the event, you can check out our regularly updated Gala 2020 website. Stay tuned for more updates and auction sneak peeks coming soon!

Don’t forget to pre-register for the auction - with our online platform it’s simple, easy, and fun! All auction packages will be uploaded for viewing by July 8 and bidding will commence the week of July 17-23. Please reach out to Tyler Dunning (tylerd@mountaineers.org) with any questions.