Thursday, July 23, 2015

We're Jamming in July

It's our busiest month here on the mountain - and it definitely feels busy this year.  The Emmons-Winthrop Glacier, Disappointment Cleaver, and Kautz Glacier have all seen numerous ascents this month.  July holds the best chance of climbers getting stable weather patterns and straightforward route conditions.  There's also quite a bit of daylight in July which helps climbers navigate rocky slopes and broken glaciers.

Sunshine and heat in July cause some of the park's fauna to start venturing higher onto the volcano.  Goats and their tracks can be seen right around high camps near 10,000 feet.  Foxes and mice venture even higher.  Rosy finches swoop in and around and can be seen near 13,000 feet.  And of course the year-round residents, and our favorites - ravens, are also out and soaring above the mountain.  With all of these creatures up high - make sure to secure your food scene.  Keep a tight camp and don't leave food out or unattended.  Crafty foxes have ruined more than one summit bid after snatching a climbing team's food bag and trotting off to their den.  It can make for a hungry hike down the hill.

As the days get shorter into August, and the weather turns a touch cooler, be prepared for the mountain's first "winter storm" to arrive... but until then, come on up and enjoy prime-time on the mountain.