Olympia Branch Blog Posts

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Top 5 Trip Reports - September 2018

Fall is here, which means lots of transitions between t-shirts and raincoats - don't forget your layers, folks! Although our Washington weather can be fickle at this time of year, when you get a  crisp autumn day perfect for an outdoor adventure, it's well worth it. We hope you're able to get out there and enjoy the season before it's time to  start strapping on skis, snowshoes, and snowboards. Read more…

Retro Rewind | Coming Full Circle

Judy Sterry remembers the exact day she joined The Mountaineers. It was her 14th birthday, the minimum age required to become a member at the time. By 16, she had climbed all six of Washington’s major Cascade volcanoes: Mount St. Helens, Mount Adams, Mount Baker, Glacier Peak, Mount Olympus, and Mount Rainier – 65,640 feet in total elevation. Read more…

Did You Know? South Point Lookout Trail #123

South Point Lookout Trail #123 is located in Gifford Pinchot National Forest. The path used to lead to a fire lookout, which was established in the 1920s and dismantled in 1972. Read more…

Outside Insight | Making the Case for Outdoor Recreation

Ruth Nielsen has practiced law in Washington for 30 years, specializing primarily in sports-related personal injury defense and outdoor product liability defense. She has successfully defended claims involving many of the activities that we lead at The Mountaineers - including skiing, rock climbing, mountaineering, and backpacking - and she is a frequent presenter at The Mountaineers annual Leadership Conference. Read more…

Trail Talk | Looking Beyond Stoke: It’s Time To Educate The Masses

It’s no surprise to any of us who have been hiking and adventuring in our wild places since the days of heavy luggedsole boots, knee high cotton socks, and external frames that in the words of conservationist Rick McGuire of the North Cascades Conservation Council and Alpine Lakes Protection Society: we are currently facing a human tsunami on our trails. And if we’re to stay true to this metaphor, a tsunami inundating our wild places isn’t going to leave them in good shape. Read more…

Volunteers Needed! Recruiting for Inclusion Committee

The storied legacy and history of our 112-year old organization is our biggest asset, and our biggest weakness. Like all great mountains, The Mountaineers has a shadow side; a largely untold story where people have been excluded from or marginalized in the outdoors because of their skin color or gender or available resources or sexual orientation. It's time to change. Read more…

Building A Safe and Respectful Culture

One of our Core Values is Community. We provide opportunities for all because we believe a diverse and inclusive outdoors inspires unity, respect, and passion for the places we love. To be true to this value, our commitment to treating one another respectfully must be iron-clad. When we do this consistently, day in and day out, we build the kind of culture where all people feel safe and can enjoy outdoor experiences to their fullest. Read more…

Celebrating K2: A Recap of our 40th Anniversary Event Series

It started with a phone call. Jim Whittaker, best known as the first American to summit Mt. Everest, had an idea. In 1978 'Big Jim' led the first Americans to the top of K2, and wanted to get his ’78 team back together, 40 years to the day of the summit. As a visionary leader, Jim knew the reunion would be a gathering for the ages and wanted to share the excitement with the community that supported him. Jim started climbing with us when he was fifteen, and as a lifelong Mountaineer he saw an opportunity to promote The Mountaineers, with all proceeds benefiting our nonprofit. We were honored and quick to agree. Read more…

Mountaineers Youth Clubs - New Member Meetings & Registration

It’s fall, the air is crisp, the leaves are turning golden brown, and The Mountaineers Youth Clubs are launching new seasons to transform our young Mountaineers into lifelong outdoor enthusiasts! Join our youth clubs this fall as we welcome new members and plan for a year of learning new skills and adventuring. Read more…

We ARE Outside | Reframing What It Means to Be ‘Outdoorsy’

One of my favorite places in the outdoors has multiple trails, several different habitats, and offers spectacular views of a major snow-capped peak. There is an old-growth forest where, among the mossy trees, you are serenaded by the rat-ta-tat-tat of pileated woodpeckers, hoots from barred owls, and screeches of Stellar’s jays. There also is abundant shoreline, where rabbits bound, beavers sun, and bald eagles, kingfishers, great blue heron, osprey, and otters nab fish. Read more…