Thursday, May 22, 2014

Memorial Day

Thanks to all the Military folks out there for your service. We couldn't do our job effectively without the support of the 214th GSAB out of Joint Base Lewis McChord. Their SAR Chinooks and crews have been giving us unparalleled support for many years. Big Thanks.

Keep an eye on road openings and closures, especially on the east side of the park.  Downed trees, stormy weather, and lingering snowpack have impacted some of the opening dates.  Both Chinook and Cayuse Passes are open (awesome!).  The road to White River Campground is still closed for this holiday weekend, but cars are allowed to park at the White River Ranger Station.  Climbers can approach climbs starting there for the holiday weekend (adds four miles to the approach).  Check out the Park Access link above and click the links on the right hand side for the most up-to-date info.

Hope everyone will have a fun and safe holiday weekend!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

It's Very Warm. Heads Up.

Ingraham Glacier & Disappointment Cleaver 
The Northwest is going to get a blast of summertime over the next few days. Temperatures are going to be hot. Seattle will be in the 80's and freezing levels in the mountains are going to be hovering around 12,000' until the weekend. The Northwest Avalanche Center has issued a special advisory through Thursday for our area. Please read this before venturing into the backcountry in the coming days. Many wet loose avalanches have been observed on steep slopes around Rainier along with a few moderate sized slabs. Avalanches can be seen  high on the Kautz above the ice chute and most likely are occurring in other high elevation spots around Rainier. A recent pit profile from the Ingraham can be found on our weather and snow page.

The next few days are going to be beautiful and great for getting outside but be wise. Climb early before the sun is up and be back in camp before the heat of the day takes real effect. Travel in all snow covered areas during the daytime will be strenuous. Skis or snowshoes will be necessary if you plan to make any progress. The snow surface should be refreezing fairly well overnight making late night and early morning travel much more pleasant. PLUS it's pretty much a full moon these days and with all the new snow the mountain will be lit up at night by moonbeams.