Thursday, June 27, 2024

Climbing and Outdoor News from Here and Abroad - 6/27/24


--The section of the Pacific Crest Trail that goes through Snoqualmie near Interstate 90 may be closed for short periods each day this summer due to blasting for work on a ski lift. To read more, click here.

--KTVZ is reporting that, "the snowcapped peak of Mount Rainier, which towers 4.3 kilometers (2.7 miles) above sea level in Washington state, has not produced a significant volcanic eruption in the past 1,000 years. Yet, more than Hawaii’s bubbling lava fields or Yellowstone’s sprawling supervolcano, it’s Mount Rainier that has many US volcanologists worried. 'Mount Rainier keeps me up at night because it poses such a great threat to the surrounding communities. Tacoma and South Seattle are built on 100-foot-thick (30.5-meter) ancient mudflows from eruptions of Mount Rainier,' Jess Phoenix, a volcanologist and ambassador for the Union of Concerned Scientists, said." To read more, click here.


--The respected big wall climber John Middendorf has died of a stroke. He was 65. Gripped has a good write-up on his legacy, here.

--Climbing is reporting on a new 17-pitch route on Keeler Needle, a 14,260-foot neighbor to Mt. Whitney called Keel Haul (V 5.13c). Read more.

Colorado and Utah:

--Fox News is reporting that, "A skier is safe thanks to the quick thinking of two off-duty ski patrol members who saved him after he fell over 1,000 feet while attempting to descend South Arapaho Peak in Colorado. On Sunday, June 16, shortly after 10:30 a.m., the Boulder County Sheriff's Office was notified of a skier who had sustained serious injuries in the area of the Skywalker Couloir on South Arapaho Peak, west of Nederland." To read more, click here.

Notes from All Over:

--Climbing is reporting on a death that took place in a rock gym: "Lee Hansche died in an accident while route setting at the Vertical Dreams climbing gym in Manchester, New Hampshire, on May 21. While the cause of the accident is unclear, Hansche, who had managed the gym for over two decades, was using the appropriate safety gear and was extremely comfortable with the rope systems involved with indoor route setting." To read more, click here.

--WABI 5 is reporting that, "A 24-year-old rock climber was rescued in Acadia National Park on Monday. It happened in an area around South Bubble Trail near Jordan Pond. According to park officials, he slid and fell about fifty feet down the rock." To read more, click here.

--CTV News is reporting that, "A skier fell about 650 metres down the side of Mount Temple after breaking through a cornice last week. Parks Canada said they were called to help on June 20. A pair of skiers had been climbing up the southwest ridge of Mount Temple, south of Lake Louise, when one fell through a cornice, an overhanging ledge or shelf of snow at the ridge of a mountain." To read more, click here.

--Teton Gravity Research is reporting that, "Lukas McClish had been lost in the Santa Cruz Mountains of California for 10 days before being rescued on June 20. When the 34-year-old hiker finally emerged from the woods, he was shirtless, scruffy, and on the brink of malnutrition. He had been surviving on berries and creek water, sleeping on damp beds of leaves, and shouting for help as he searched for a way out." To read more, click here.

--And finally, the photo above is what you get when you ask AI to teach you how to camp. Maybe hire a guide instead. This has been making its way around the internet. First seen on @tamaryellin's account on Threads, but appears to be making the rounds.

Upcoming American Alpine Institute Programs:

Mountaineering in Ecuador
Kilimanjaro Expedition
Alpine Mountaineering and Technical Leadership
Alpinism I: Introduction to Mountaineering
Glacier Skills and Crevasse Rescue
Mt. Baker Skills and Climb
Mt. Shuksan Skills and Climb
Mt. Whitney Skills and Climb
Alpine Rock Climbing

Thursday, June 20, 2024

Climbing and Outdoor News from Here and Abroad - 6/20/24

American Alpine Institute Denali Updates:

Team 5 has made the summit of Denali. And Team 6 is moving up to Camp II.


--The News Tribune is reporting that, "A missing skier who was found deceased at Mount Rainier National Park has been identified. Karen Jackmin, 38 of University Place, died from multiple blunt-force injuries on May 18. Her manner of death is listed as an accident, according to the Pierce County Medical Examiner’s Office." To read more, click here.

--The Washington State Parks has put out a survey on snowmobile use in SnoParks. To respond to the survey, click here.

--Climbing is reporting on an older incident on the Goat Wall: "On Tuesday, May 21, a group of eight climbers from Illinois and Indiana attempted to ascend a long sport climbing route on the Goat Wall in Mazama, Washington. The party started climbing at 7:30 A.M. and were still only two-thirds up the route (at the top of the seventh pitch out of 11) when the sun began to set. By the time the group called the Okanagan County Sheriff’s Office at 10:30 P.M. to initiate a rescue, it was dark." To read more, click here.


--Climbing is reporting that, "Yosemite National Park was the site of a protest against Israeli intervention in Gaza this week. A team of four climbers hung a banner emblazoned with the words “STOP THE GENOCIDE” and the colors of the Palestinian flag on the iconic rock face of El Capitan." To read more, click here.

Desert Southwest:

--The Associate Press is reporting that, "A couple hiking in the desert south of Joshua Tree National Park in Southern California was rescued after running out of water, authorities said. On Sunday, the man called 911 and reported that his girlfriend was dehydrated and weak, according to a statement from the Riverside County Sheriff’s Office posted Monday on social media." To read more, click here.

Mt. Wilson in Red Rock Canyon

--The Las Vegas Sun is reporting that, "Commissioners unanimously approved an $80 million settlement to end their yearslong legal battle with developer Gypsum Resources and owner Jim Rhodes, giving Gypsum the green light to move forward on their residential project that will erect 3,500 homes near Red Rock Canyon and Blue Diamond Hill. The agreement calls for Gypsum Resources to limit its development to 3,500 homes, when they initially planned for 5,000. It is also contingent on the Bureau of Land Management agreeing to divert traffic from Scenic Route 160 to Scenic Route 159." To read more, click here.

--Backpacker is reporting that, "an outbreak of a severe gastrointestinal illness swept through the hundreds of hikers who visited Arizona’s famed Havasu Falls this week. In some cases, individual hikers and whole groups had to be airlifted out because they were too sick to walk unassisted. The cause of the outbreak is as of yet unknown." To read more, click here.

--News Channel 3 is reporting that, "Joshua Tree National Park leadership has implemented fire restrictions that began on Saturday, June 15, and will continue through October 1 due to hot, dry weather conditions and increasing fire danger." To read more, click here.

Colorado and Utah:

--Yahoo News is reporting that, "Two off-duty firefighters happened to be in the right place at the right time on Sunday when they witnessed a skier begin an attempt to descend a gully on South Arapahoe Peak before falling. It happened on the Skywalker Couloir. According to the Boulder County Sheriff’s Office, the skier was beginning the ski descent of the couloir, which is west of Nederland, when he fell and slid around 1,000-2,000 feet down the snowfield before his fall was arrested on a rock ledge." To read more, click here.

--The National Park Service is reporting that, "A ranger at Bryce Canyon National Park has died from injuries sustained after tripping and falling while on-duty. Around 11:30 p.m. on Friday, June 7, Park Ranger Tom Lorig was working with park visitors at Bryce Canyon’s annual Astronomy Festival. While directing a visitor to a shuttle bus, Ranger Lorig fell and struck his head on a large rock. Finding him unresponsive, the visitor quickly notified a nearby law enforcement ranger. National park rangers, medically-trained bystanders, and local EMS personnel cooperated to provide initial life-saving care, but were unsuccessful in reviving Ranger Lorig. He was 78 years old." To read more, click here.

--Ski is reporting that, "a decision that just came down from the Colorado Supreme Court has the potential to disrupt the state’s ski industry. The seven justices of the state’s highest court ruled 5-2 that the broad liability waivers we all sign when we purchase our lift tickets don’t hold ski resorts immune from lawsuits in all situations." To read more, click here.

Notes from All Over:

--The American Alpine Club has awarded several grants, including one to former AAI Guide Chantel Astorga. Read more.

--The Associated Press is reporting that, "Shaun White is starting a season-long halfpipe league that will offer more than $1.5 million in prizes in hopes of pulling together what has long been a spread-out, confusing action-sports calendar." To read more, click here.

Thursday, June 6, 2024

Climbing and Outdoor News from Here and Abroad - 6/6/2024

American Alpine Institute Denali Updates:

American Alpine Institute Team 2 made the summit. Team 3 is waiting for a chance at the summit at high camp. Team 4 is at Camp 3. And Team 5 is waiting for a weather window to fly onto the mountain. Read more about AAI's 2024 Denali Season, here


--It appears that some experienced climbers are missing near Squamish. Read more.

--Washington State Parks are looking at a proposal to cut the number of nights that campers can stay. To read about it, click here.


--Climbing is reporting that, "accomplished California climber and guidebook author Charles Barrett was sentenced to life in prison for the rape of a woman in Yosemite National Park. The ruling, made by U.S. District Court Judge John A. Mendez, comes after a weeklong February trial in which a jury found Barrett guilty of two counts of aggravated sexual abuse and one count of abusive sexual contact. All of the case’s proceedings were held in Sacramento." To read more, click here.

El Capitan

--Gripped is reporting that, "Alex Honnold has set a new rope-solo speed record in Yosemite that surely won’t be broken anytime soon, having climbed the 3,500-foot Salathé Wall in only 11 hours and 18 minutes." To read more, click here.

Desert Southwest:

--A fire burned approximately 113 acres of Red Rock Canyon last week. Learn more.

--The Deseret Sun is reporting that, "Joshua Tree National Park is seeking public comment on a proposal to increase camping and Key’s Ranch Tour fees, which would take effect next year." To read more, click here.

Colorado and Utah:

--Unnoffical Networks is reporting that, "Brian Head Town Council approved on Tuesday the annexation of approximately 1,799 acres for a new real estate community called Aspen Meadows. This real estate community will add hundreds of acres of new skiable terrain and multiple lifts, including a multi-stage gondola, to Brian Head Resort. Trail cutting reportedly began yesterday, but an opening date for the first phase of the ski resort expansion hasn’t been officially announced." To read more, click here.

--The NPS is reporting that, "The National Park Service has finalized a Day Use Visitor Access Plan for Rocky Mountain National Park to manage day use visitor access in a way that protects the park's resources, maintains positive visitor experiences, promotes safety, and supports the park’s ability to maintain daily operations. The plan establishes two timed entry reservation systems from late-May through mid-October, one for the Bear Lake Road Corridor and one for the rest of the park. This is similar to what the park has piloted the last three summers and is the current operational plan for this summer. The reservation systems have been successful at spreading visitor use out throughout the day and throughout the park." To read more, click here.

--Here's a rundown of what went down at the first ever Outside Festival in Colorado.

Notes from All Over:

--An independent climber died in a snow cave on Denali this week. From Alaska Public Media: "One of the two climbers trapped since Tuesday near Denali’s summit was rescued alive by a helicopter crew early Friday. The other died in a snow cave while waiting for help, according to park officials." To read more, click here.

--The New York Times is reporting on sexual harassment and assault in climbing culture. To read the piece, click here.

--Several routes on Wyoming's Devil's Tower are now closed for nesting falcons. Read more.

--A new study indicates that there's a correlation between social media use and National Parks visitation.