Summitted Rainier via the Disappointment Cleaver route Tuesday, July 30.
We arrived at Camp Muir on Monday around noon to 50 mph wind gusts and the news that no teams had summitted for the past two days due to high winds. And, there was a cloud cap hanging over the summit.
Awoke at 220am (slept through our alarm) on Tuesday to same winds and same cloud cap on summit. We decided to make a go of it and get as high as we could with the top of the Cleaver our goal, and were under way by 330am.
We encountered gusts of 40 or so in the Igraham Flats and same for Cleaver. Two RMI teams were ahead of us and had not yet turned around. There are several sketchy snow bridges above the Cleaver between 12-13,000 feet.
We continued climbing into the cloud cap, which seemed to thin as the sun came up. As we topped out at the summit crater (930am)it was neccessary to get down on all fours due to wind gusts, which my partner estimated at 70-80 mph.
After a short stop on top we descended, and about 100' below the crater rim the winds subsided greatly. We were surprised at how soft the snow had become by 945am-10am, which made the pucker factor on the snow bridges high.
Return early from the summit to avoid the soft snow as it has been warm lately at altitude. Move quickly below the Ceaver to avoid the 'bowling alley'. Enjoy!