The Smileys Project: Committed, continues with a successful climb of Liberty Ridge on Mt Rainier. The climb was amazing, all 10,000 vertical feet of it. Justin H. and Matt M. joined us for the climb. All told it took three days to get up and back down. Starting at the White River Campground we hiked into the Winthrop Glacier. Day two we advanced to Thumb Rock. Day three we went to the top and all the way down and out...it was a 16 hour day!
The start of the route requires you to be in the blast zone. Rocks wiz down around you from over a thousand feet above. Helmet or not, if one of those catch you it would be a closed-casket funeral for sure. There is also slab pitch up higher. You clip the rope to a 40 year old angled piton, then climb diagonal and up for 40 feet across a slime covered slab that is wet from the perpetually melting snow patch above. So if you do slip near the top you are going for a tumbling, cheese-grating 80 footer...
Mark Smiley and Christian Stoll climbed the Northwest Arete in the spring of 2009.
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Justin, Matt and the Marks went down to Ecuador to climb a few volcanos. It was an amazing time for sure. If you are interested in booking you own trip please contact Salt Mountaineering today. firstname.lastname@example.org