Ascent to Mount Rainier-camp Muir on 2020-03-09

Climber: chris hooper

Date:Monday, March 9, 2020
Ascent Type:Unsuccessful - Turned Back
Point Reached:Mount Rainier - camp Muir
    Elevation:10188 ft / 3105 m
    Remaining Elevation:4223 ft / 1287 m (100% left to go)

Ascent Trip Report

In our case, "attempt" is generous.

Glen and I left Paradise at 430pm Sunday, arriving to camp Muir sometime after 10. Hard pack snow and moon light made for an easy and scenic night ascent with views of surounding mountains. Canceling our rainier winter attempt is our yearly tradition, but this year we decided to head up with some gear to have a look.

After arriving, I became sick and vomited, most likely from altitude, although I at first suspected bad water as we did not boil or filter our snow at camp Muir. I have been up much higher much faster but never experienced so much as a headache, so it was a surprise.

A considerably stronger and better equiped team was already at the hut and they made an attempt Monday morning via cathedral gap, turning back due to high winds. We held a little hope for our own summit bid Tuesday morning as weather predictions were initially for lighter winds and warmer temperatures Tuesday (-18F, 30mph, green NWAC prediction above treeline).

Ultimately, we decided to descend Monday from Muir shortly after the other group, as weather predictions worsened. We felt our experience and equipment did not offer enough saftey margin for the temperatures and winds developing on the mountain. We were glad for our decision upon reaching paradise as predictions for Tuesday morning had increased from 20mph when we initially set out to 35-50mph winds turning to 55 throughout Wednesday.

It was great to meet Fabien and Nick. Seeing Rainier in winter was a worthwhile experience despite the fact that Glen and I accomplished no climbing above camp muir. It is a much more beautiful mountain in my opinion when it is covered in ice and snow.
Summary Total Data
    Route Conditions:
Snow Climb, Glacier Climb
    Gear Used:
Ice Axe, Crampons, Rope, Headlamp, Ski Poles, Snowshoes, Hut Camp
Ascent Part of Trip: Mt Rainier 2020 winter (1 nights total away from roads)

Complete Trip Sequence:
 Muir Peak2020-03-09 
1(Attempt) Mount Rainier2020-03-09 

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