Thursday, August 29, 2019

Muir Snowfield Conditions Update 8/28/2019

Beautiful summer weather finally arrived at Mount Rainier National Park and the days have been nice for hiking on the mountain. That said, walking conditions on the Muir Snowfield continue to deteriorate as the summer season progresses.

Crevasses are beginning to open up above 8500' and icy patches are melting out all over. The guide services have made the switch to crampons for their trips up and down the snowfield. Skilled snow walkers may be able to navigate the firm patches but we definitely recommend micro-spikes or full crampons.

A crevasse on the Muir Snowfield
We still have the odd (no pun intended) skier or two making the journey to Camp Muir and trying their luck at skiing back down. We definitely cannot recommend that due to the conditions however. The surface is a mix of the aforementioned ice with pumice and plenty of loose rock all around. Please use extreme caution when skiing as the open crevasses can be very hard to spot due to the roughness of the snow surface.

The view down to Paradise from 10,000'
As September approaches we will see a return to stormy weather. If you're planning a trip up to Camp Muir or beyond please prepare for the trip by checking the weather and bringing the essentials, especially navigation equipment.