|A view from the start of our climb|
Mandy's climb team: 0
Let's start at the end of the story. No one on my climb team achieved the summit of Mt. Rainier. 8 out of the 9 members of my climb team made it to 12,800' before unstable snow conditions made them turn around and return to Camp Muir. 2 days before our climb, the upper mountain received 18" of snow. Avalanche risk was high. When they talked about hearing the snow crack beneath them...
Notice I said "them". I did not make it that far. In fact, I could not keep the pace set by the lead guide. My team reached Camp Muir in 4.5 hours. (Average is 5 hours, 15 minutes). My team only took 3 breaks on the way there, skipping the typical first break. At our first break, I was about 10 minutes behind the team. The guide with me convinced me that it was more beneficial to the team if I did not continue with them. Instead, I joined another RMI team descending from Camp Muir and returned to Base Camp. In hindsight, after speaking with my parents who have achieved Camp Muir, my pace was not truly hurting my team, and I could have continued to push for Camp Muir.
The bottom line though? I was not in good enough condition to maintain their pace. This means I was also not in good enough condition to achieve the summit. On the upper mountain, we travel in rope teams for safety. Up there, I would have endangered my team.
|Me and my Dad at base camp|
|Mountaineering school taught me a lot.|
You can also see that I tore my hard shell with my crampons.
Nothing a little duct tape can't fix!
- Continue with the weight loss. I will lose the remaining 20-25 lbs needed to achieve my goal weight. This will make the climb significantly easier.
- I will incorporate training sessions with a heavier pack (at least 50 lbs). My pack on climb day felt as heavy as my heaviest pack trained with. I want it to feel lighter. :)
- I will train for longer sessions without a break. It is entirely possible that my next guide will also skip the first break. In addition, the section with Disappointment Cleaver is typically 1.5 hours. I want to train for 2 hours minimum without a break.
- I will incorporate speed sessions with a pack. Bottom line, I need to be faster. Especially when training at the Dam Steps. The down portion of those steps is a built in break, and I think that ultimately hurt me. Thus, when on the steps, I need to go even faster. I am considering using only every other step. I will also do these year round.
- On my ski trip next spring, I will spend as many days climbing the ski slopes with my pack as I do skiing.
- I will spend the final 2 weeks pre-climb in Colorado. I will also make another trip to Colorado to climb as many 14'ers as possible. Although they are not as technical as Rainier and do not gain as much in elevation, it will still be good to practice at elevation.
- I will incorporate some time-specific training. Where, I go to bed before the sun, and get up in the middle of the night to workout.
Now, that you've read all that - here are some pictures my husband took from the rest of the climb.
|A view along the way to Camp Muir|
|Mark hanging out at a rest stop|
|My Dad at a rest stop|
|The cozy accommodations at Camp Muir|
|My Dad and Mark at Camp Muir|
|A view after sunrise|
|A view from the upper mountain - near sunrise|
I look forward to catching up on all that I missed while on my 2 week long trip. I will also post stories and pictures from the Alaskan cruise in the next day or so. Oh, and Avery is fabulous, and practically walking.
|Put me down mom, I got a city to walk around!|