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Rainier rescue in the Seattle Times 6/22

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the conditions were shit! we went up to steamboat prow, thought about setting up camp, then went back down yesterday! it was heinous! went from the trailhead up to 9500' then back down in under 7hrs though so it was a good workout in bad weather!

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Stupid f**ks!! I cancelled a climb up Glacier peak because of the storm that rolled in. Can't imagine anyone with any clue would be attemting a major peak during this weather. I believe they should be charged for their rescue.

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Part of me really wishes they'd just leave a few of those parties stranded up there from time to time, just to make future parties consider the rammifications of their decisions to proceed a little more carefully.

 

It's an easy call to 'go' when you know you can whip out the cell and call for an air taxi when the going gets tough.

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I'll reserve judgement until I get the whole story, but I would really like to hear the rationale for going up with a forecast like that. Other than training for a winter route in the Himal or sum shizzle, I can't think of many others. Geek_em8.gif

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I think anyone who was training for the greater ranges would 1) either be able to figure out the forecast or 2) be going up there expressly for storm fun fun fun!

 

But whatever. Alive climber are better than dead climbers! Good job to the party getting down.

 

Alex

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Distel32 said:

the conditions were shit! we went up to steamboat prow, thought about setting up camp, then went back down yesterday! it was heinous! went from the trailhead up to 9500' then back down in under 7hrs though so it was a good workout in bad weather!

 

did you do the sit start yellaf.gif

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careful, he's sensitive about that yellaf.gif

 

my guess is they were foiled by the sucker chalk to nowhere coming out of Schurman. hahaha.gif

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Distel32 said:

the conditions were shit! we went up to steamboat prow, thought about setting up camp, then went back down yesterday! it was heinous! went from the trailhead up to 9500' then back down in under 7hrs though so it was a good workout in bad weather!

Very impressive chester

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I know at least three of the climbers. Their leader was Jack LaMont. I saw the story on the TV . They said they dug snow caves and trenches and waited. Sounds like they got themselves down off the mountain when the visibility improved.

 

I know if it had been me leading the trip, I would have either stayed in Seattle or gone to Vantage instead. The weather forecast was so poor. As it happened I put in a nice brick walkway in the front yard and scored a few honey do points.

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Wow, sounds like pretty idiotic decision making. I enjoyed a very peaceful 2 days east of the crest. scattered clouds and some snow flurries but nothing much more.

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I was with the Mounties on Daniel this weekend. We were near Peasoup Lake early Sunday morning with about six inches of freshiez, high winds, and low visibility. We decided to turn around not because the conditions were so bad but because the group dynamics (nine people, some of whom were feeling weak, sick, etc.) combined with the conditions were just too much. It's one of those things were speed is safety -- a small group of experienced climbers would have had no problem summiting, but nine climbers, six of whom were basic students, is a little different.

 

I thnk the whole "sign up weeks in advance for a climb" along with the "need X rock summits and Y glacier summits to graduate" makes people less likely to change destinations and more likely to cancel climbs enroute rather than beforehand.

 

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So I read this article and saw it on the news.

 

What I wondered was: how does anyone think a helicopter is going to pull people off the mountain when they can't walk off due to weather. Do you think a chopper can fly in weather that prevents healthy people from walking? wazzup.gif

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Rodchester said:

So I read this article and saw it on the news.

 

What I wondered was: how does anyone think a helicopter is going to pull people off the mountain when they can't walk off due to weather. Do you think a chopper can fly in weather that prevents healthy people from walking? wazzup.gif

 

Again, I think we need to return to the fact that these people are apparently idiots. I'm sure the thought of *not* being able to be bailed out of their self-created situation never even occured to them.

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I didn't read the newspaper or watch the news, so I know nothing about it. But from what little I've heard about the incident, it sounds like they went up despite a poor forecast, hunkered down and suffered for a day or so, and then made their way back down to Camp Schurman. Did a ranger go up and escort them down or something?

 

From my ignorant perspective, it sounds to me as if you folks who rant about how stupid they must have been probably don't know much more about it than I do, and I bet some of you have done equally "dumb" things at some point in your climbing careers. Some people stay at home until they get a perfect weather report, and then they rely upon that weather report to go "fast and light" without carrying storm clothing or bivvy gear. That could be said to be at least as stupid as going up in poor weather with sufficient gear to hunker down and wait for clearing.

 

Go ahead and flame me, because I've already admitted I really don't know what I'm talking about.

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I heard on the news that they had their judgement distorted by reading too much gung ho do it in a day aiding in the rain beer drinking cheating death chestbeating drivel on some internet site.

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mattp said:

 

 

Go ahead and flame me, because I've already admitted I really don't know what I'm talking about.

 

Ok, Fuck you Matt madgo_ron.gif I know even less than you, but I did some yard work at my house on Saturday, and I wouldn't have even attempted the descent to Ballard cantfocus.gif

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I wouldn't have made an attempt either. But I'll give them some leeway untill I hear the whole story.

 

My point about the chopper was more of an observation, and I'm not so sure that the climbers even asked for a chopper. My point was only that someone, most likely the media asking a ranger about choppers pulling them off the mountain when the weather was supposedly so bad they couldn't walk off. cantfocus.gif How can one expect a chopper to fly in that?

 

From what I've heard so far it sound like they used bad judgment. (We'll see). If they didn't have the cell phone, and didn't make a call, the same outcome would have likely occurred, but we wouldn't be discussing it because we never would have heard about it. They would have hunkered down and then just walked down when the felt it was time. Because they had a cell phone, we have a news story. frown.gif

Edited by Rodchester

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The TV interviewed a couple of guys who summitted before this group and saw them heading up on their way down. Sounds like it was doable for some groups that day. wave.gif

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Looks like they're going to need to install a phone booth on both the summit of Glacier Peak AND the Emmons Glacier! hahaha.gif

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The weather forecast for this weekend wasn't questionable, it was just plain shitty. No reading between the lines was nescessary to determine that a big ass snowy volcano was *not* the place to be. I'm not one to wait for perfect weather, but given a forecast so poor with a high level of confidence, you have to realize what you are in for and change plans. I mean, c'mon, 5k snow level, winds and rain in June...that should tell you the last place you want to be is rainer. The forecast also specifically stated the worst weather events were going to be on Saturday and Monday. I'm willing to say leaving Schurman and heading up on Saturday despite this is stupid. They should have gone earlier (sounds like one group did...and summited) or waited a day. Also, given the fact that they knew they were walking into worsening weather, they should have been prepared to descend in whiteout conditions by wanding the route, etc.

 

Many people have pointed this out before, but I think when people make plans to "do rainer" (or whatever else) months in advance they will force a climb despite good reasons not to.

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JoshK said:

The weather forecast for this weekend wasn't questionable, it was just plain shitty. No reading between the lines was nescessary to determine that a big ass snowy volcano was *not* the place to be. I'm not one to wait for perfect weather, but given a forecast so poor with a high level of confidence, you have to realize what you are in for and change plans. I mean, c'mon, 5k snow level, winds and rain in June...that should tell you the last place you want to be is rainer. The forecast also specifically stated the worst weather events were going to be on Saturday and Monday. I'm willing to say leaving Schurman and heading up on Saturday despite this is stupid. They should have gone earlier (sounds like one group did...and summited) or waited a day. Also, given the fact that they knew they were walking into worsening weather, they should have been prepared to descend in whiteout conditions by wanding the route, etc.

 

Many people have pointed this out before, but I think when people make plans to "do rainer" (or whatever else) months in advance they will force a climb despite good reasons not to.

Very good point on the permits issue. In my opinion the danger with inexperience is clarity of thinking in "stormy" conditions. Unfortunatly these events will always happen, and will become more common in the coming years due to population increases, and apathetic reasoning. pitty.gif

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