Day 1 - Arrive at Sea-Tac International Airport and make your way to Olympia Washington. Members may choose to camp in the expedition leader’s backyard/ garden, or we can advise members on a local hotel at your own expense.
Day 2 – We start the day with some of the coffee or tea, and then meet the group for a mandatory meeting at 8:30. After breakfast at a local café, the expedition leader will check the members’ equipment and clothing. Next, the group carpools up to Seattle where participants can buy, try out, or rent equipment at many of the reasonably priced shops like Ascent Outdoors or REI. We will finish the day with dinner at a local restaurant before making our way back to Olympia.
Day 3 - We pack our rucksacks and cars in Olympia and caravan to the Mount Rainier National Park. Along the way, we will stop at a grocery store for last minute food shopping. At the park, we start by getting group gear sorted and permits organized. After learning and practicing snow travel techniques, we will arrive at the glacial moraine where we set up camp, cook dinner, and get a good night’s rest for school the next day.
Day 4 - After an early breakfast, we go over roping up and walking as a team on a glacier. We climb some of the hills surrounding camp and practice building snow anchors. We finish the day by practicing self arrest and glissading with our ice axes as we descend back to camp.
Day 5 - After a morning breakfast, we pack up our camp and spend the day moving through the clouds to the upper mountain where we will build a high camp in preparation for our summit attempt. The path is up a variety of non-technical snow terrain with excellent views of the surrounding glaciers.
Day 6 -We use the technical icefall near camp to teach crevasse self-rescue techniques in the morning. We end the day early so that we can melt snow and fill water bottles for our evening climb. The leaders spend the rest of the day answering any questions that have come up over the week.
Day 7 - We will walk through the night, taking advantage of optimal snow conditions as well as using all hours in the day, hopefully arriving at the summit before lunch. The route has steep snow to 40 degrees and includes portions of volcanic rock that we will scramble over to gain the summit ridge. After arriving at the summit, we can celebrate, and rest in the crater for bite to eat. We walk back to camp while enjoying the alpine vistas, pack up our high camp, and head back to the parking lot for the drive to Olympia. Some members choose to head back to Seattle this day, but do not schedule a flight on day 7 as we may get in very late.
Day 8 - We have a final group breakfast in Olympia, and we say goodbye to new friends, then make our way to the airport for our journey home.
- All members must participate in the full 8-day itinerary. It is not possible to arrive later, nor is it possible to depart earlier.
- We are not able to accommodate people who wish to arrive in Seattle earlier, nor are we able to help those who wish to stay later. If you choose to make a longer trip, you will be "on your own". We ask that you arrive at Daniel Mazur's house in Seattle during reasonable hours, that is, before Midnight on Saturday.