“At first an ordeal and then an accomplishment, the daily run becomes a staple, like bread, or wine, a fine marriage, or air. It is also a free pass to friendship.”
~ Benjamin Cheever, Strides

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Mountaineering Fashion Show

Yesterday, I got a box from Whittaker Mountaineering with all my clothes for the climb.  It's funny how one little package can change my attitude from nervous about the climb to super excited about it.
Is it as exciting as Alfalfa hair?
Of course, I had to make sure everything fit.  But, not just fit....it also had to fit in the appropriate layers....so let's commence the Mountaineering Fashion Show.

First I have for you, this attractive base layer by Patagonia.  It's typically light to medium weight, and the perfect first layer for your next mountain climb.  The top includes a zipper to allow for even more body temperature control.
Looking sexy in the base layer...
To make sure it all fit in the proper order, I added layers from this point.  The next layer is the scintillating "light insulating layer".  Both pieces are by First Ascent.  The top layer is the beautiful First Ascent hangfire hoodie in Smoke Gray.  The bottom layer is the Climbing Pants, First Ascent Guide Pants.
Look how sexy it all looks - base layer peeking out.
I admit, it seemed kind of warm to keep adding layers in June, in Ohio...even with air conditioning.  

The next layer is the bread and butter of mountain climbing wear - the soft shell layer.  The soft shell layer is a windproof, water-resistant (but not water proof) breathable layer.  The soft shell layer is a jacket only, no pants.
I stylishly put the zippers in a way to show all the layers on top...
I bet this jacket will see lots of use this next winter in Ohio as well, it's pretty awesome.

No fashion show is complete without some vogue-type poses with the fancy hood on the soft shell layer.
Strike a pose!
Now, I'm sure all of you are thinking - "what if it's storming on the mountain?"  Or, "You're on a glacier - water resistant??  WTH - what about water proof???"

That's where the hard shell layer comes in.  Hopefully, this layer will just be added weight in my pack and the weather will NEVER require me to pull it out.  The hard shell is a water proof, wind proof layer that goes over ALL the previous layers.  The jacket has a hood and the pants have zippers down the legs to allow for adjustments over boots and crampons.
My expression shows how nice and cool it is wearing 4 layers on top and 3 on bottom in Ohio, in June, in a heat wave.
Practicing hunkering down in my hood.
I stripped off all the extra layers so fast, that I had to showcase the balaclava with just the base layer.
Embracing my inner ninja
Of course, Mark was also trying on all his layers in between acting as my photographer for my fashion show.  I made him have at least one photo when he had all his layers on...
See what I put up with?
And here ends our Mountaineering Fashion show.  I know, I know, you all wish you were climbing a mountain now and could have such cool layers.

I am definitely getting excited about the climb now!  Crazy to think that I still have a 107 mile running relay before the climb (The relay is this weekend!).

I'm late on my training report from last week because a Fashion Show seemed like more fun....On a side note though, just after Avery was born and I started training for the mountain...I wouldn't have been able to fit into ANY of the clothes sold for climbing the mountain.  Last night, not only did they all fit, but I could add all the layers with ease.  So. Awesome.

Have you ever done anything that required so many clothing layers?

Do you own a balaclava?  (I know some runners use them in the winter)

Have you ever been to a real fashion show?  Would you go to one?


  1. Yahoo!! That is awesome! BTW, I love the bathroom - I don't think I've been upstairs to see it yet. Makes me itch to get our master bath done. You guys look great in the layers and you are ready. Hopefully that blue one stays in the bag!

    1. Thanks!!! We had to do the show in the bathroom so that I had a big enough mirror to see how the layers looked. Apparently, I can be vain sometimes. HA!

    2. I thought it was because the bedroom may or may not have been a bit messy!

  2. Omgs I love the inner ninja and I knew there had to be a tongue hanging out photo!!!!! You will be the most glamorous climber!!!!!!

  3. Mandy you look AMAZING!!!! every time I come visit it looks like you've shrunk :) and WOW those layers......I think they all look amazing I loved the fashion show.

    I have never been to a fashion show but I have been in a few ;) I was a runway model in a couple of charity fashion shows. Hahaha so funny b/c I look nothing like a model. Nor can I do the walk....but it was for the cancer society so all is good :)

  4. Love this post :) What a great fashion show! My favourite part? How happy and excited you look!!
    I've never done anything that requires so many layers and I've never owned a balaclava... I think one would make me a little claustraphobic :)

  5. How exciting! What could be better than sporty clothes? I've always wanted something from Patagonia...someday.
    All the best with your relay-- they are way more badass than I thought.
    I was a model dresser in college so yes, tons of fashion shows. Fun!

  6. Oh and yes to the balaclava here too!

  7. ha ha - can you move with all that on?!?! that's a lot of clothing - but nice clothing :)

    i wear a lot of layers in the winter but you have me beat by a mile!

    1. Haha! Good point on the movement! Luckily, mountaineering is not a speed sport...and there is actually decent give in the clothes. :)

  8. Mandy,

    The cloths look great and you look great. I can really see the weight loss!

  9. I am the anonymous poster above - love Dad

  10. I've never done anything requiring that many layers other than snowboarding! I can't wait to hear about how this adventure goes!

  11. We do own balaclavas, but I've never used them for running. Some winters days I've wished for them....

    And I DO wish I were climbing a mountain after seeing this fashion show. I LOVE new gear!!

  12. Oooooooooooooo, exciting!! Love all your new stuff!

  13. Wow! That's a lot of layers-- love the fashion show! :) And congrats to you for fitting into them all in such a short time, that's a great way to measure your success so far!

  14. So random question. Did you skip the down parka?

    1. No. You absolutely HAVE to have the down parka on the upper mountain. However, it is rather pricey and you may not need it on other mountains. Thus, I simply rented one from Whittaker Mountaineering.


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